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Transit Express - Couleurs Naturelles  CD (album) cover


Transit Express

Jazz Rock/Fusion

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Sean Trane
Prog Folk
4 stars Couleurs Naturelles is TE's last album, but by this time, they're a quintet, having integrated David Rose (violin) as a full-time member. Again recorded in Chateau d'Hérouville under the Laurent Thibault patronage, CN has a very simple and un-comitting artwork, presenting a spent tube of red colour paint and it comes with a text of their other musical project leader, where they are Yves Simon's backing band.

In some ways this album seems to head back towards the debut album and its Mahavishnu influence, partly because of David Rose's violin is reminiscent of Goodman's violin (more that than of Ponty's), thus enforcing the comparison. Strangely enough, this album is more written by Perathoner, the rest of the quintet sharing the equivalent of one good. If I mentioned that Rose's violin reminded me more of Jerry Goodman (rather than Ponty), it's overall effect on the group's sound (and the fact that we are now well into the second half of the 70's) is a shift from first era Mahavishnu and Iceberg towards the second-era Mahavishnu and late 70's Ponty (the Armstrong and Struemer years). Are you sure you're following me? In other words, I'm saying that Rose sounds like Goodman but his effect on the band is that they sound more like bands in which Ponty have been in. There is still a slight Zeuhl slant that could be likened to Potemkine.

This was to be the last album of TE, their third in little more than 18 months and released early 77, but by that time, most likely the group had said everything that they'd had to say, even though I imagine they kept on backing up French singer Yves Simon, and only Perathoner will commit more works to discs. It's pretty hard to tell you which of the three albums is the best, or tell you which one to start with, as they're all good. But you might want to attack this band's oeuvres chronologically

Report this review (#183378)
Posted Wednesday, September 24, 2008 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
4 stars This is TRANSIT EXPRESS' third and final album. David Rose who guested on the final two tracks of the previous album is a full time member now, so lots of violin on this one. I like this album better than the debut but not quite as much as the previous one. Although this one is very impressive no matter how it compares with the others.

"10eme RUE EST" opens with uptempo violin before the power comes in with drums and bass. I like when it settles 1 1/2 minutes in with violin playing over top. Keyboards follow then the violin returns. The bass is chunky late. "Visite Au Minoir" opens with the sound of rain and acoustic guitar. Melancholic violin joins in. Drums and a full sound 1 1/2 minutes in. It settles into a funky groove. A calm with rain, acoustic guitar and violin like the intro takes over 3 1/2 minutes in. Drums join in as it builds. "Marchand De Sable Et Pere Fouettard" opens with acoustic guitar and bass. Violin joins in as it builds. Drums too. It turns funky 1 1/2 minutes in as it changes. Guitar after 2 1/2 minutes lights it up.

"Au Dela Du Miroir" opens with piano as violin joins in. It starts to pick up before 4 1/2 minutes. "Le Grande Escalier" features these haunting vocal melodies as drums come in and eventually dominate. "Cathedrale De Verre" is a darker song while "Stress" opens with slicing vioin as drums, bass and electric piano support. The guitar starts to rip it up before a minute then the violin responds as they trade solos. Nice. It blends into "L'Imaga Du Miroir". This is intense with violin,bass and drums standing out. "Qui Donc A Reve?" is uptempo with violin playing over top.

Cool to see that this was recorded and mixed at Laurent Thibault's studio. This one is a pleasure to listen to.

Report this review (#267489)
Posted Monday, February 22, 2010 | Review Permalink

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