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Dionysos Le Prince Croule album cover
4.00 | 35 ratings | 4 reviews | 23% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1972

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Lever du Prince (4:48)
2. Chanson du Courage (3:11)
3. Demain la Vie (4:20)
4. Terreur et Masque (3:19)
5. Le Prince Jardine (4:11)
6. Safari (5:28)
7. Ballade Inquiete (3:31)
8. Terreur et Jouie - Le Prince Croule (13:51)

The Mandala CD reissue features the the Prince Croule tracks reworked in 94 for the Pionniers 69-74 release

Line-up / Musicians

- Éric Clément / guitar
- Jean-Pierre Forget / saxophone
- Robert Lepage / drums, vocals
- André Mathieu / Organ
- Paul-André Thibert / lead vocals, harmonica, flute

Releases information

Vinyl: Canada Zodiaque label # ZOX 6001, 1972

CD: Mandala 290

Thanks to Ricochet for the addition
and to ProgLucky for the last updates
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DIONYSOS Le Prince Croule ratings distribution

(35 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(23%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(37%)
Good, but non-essential (34%)
Collectors/fans only (3%)
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)

DIONYSOS Le Prince Croule reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
4 stars Second and seminal album from this solid pioneering quintet of La Belle Province. Again released in 70 (but on a different label, the first release of Zodiaque), and graced with an abstract artwork, Le Prince Croule (the prince crumbles) is the logical continuation of Le Grand Jeu, but the quintet have learned a few tricks and Prince is a definitely better album as well as a concept album, revolving around a crumbling realm and a revolution.

Starting on the heavy dramatics of a Hammond and some prime guitar squeals; Dionysos unleashes into the Prince's new day (Lever Du Prince), telling us nothing has changed and they're ready for some solid proto-prog but with French lyrics, even if Thibert's vocals are an acquired taste. Chanson Du Courage (too bad for the abrupt fade-out) and Demain La Vie (a fantastic "prog start" ala Crimson) are both excellent, but Terreur Et Masque has a real Uriah Heep feel due in great part to the saturated Hammond. Most of the album is well in the line of what's been described so far, with plenty of good solos and when the needle lifts from the wax of side A and lands on the flipside (Prince Jardine means the prince is gardening), while it's still clearly the same group, the songwriting has taken on another dramatic turn with Mort De L'Aigle (death of the eagle) and some truly demonstrative and descriptive playing that the power is shifting and the reign is over. There are some Spanish hints in the most dramatic of times. Ballade Inquiète is the prince realizing his carelessness, but he wonders way too late and the 13-mins+ title track is closing the story with again plenty of instrumental dramatics and some inventive vocals (at times anyway, and they're still an acquired taste), .

For some reasons, the group will remain mute until 74, when they will write and play the soundtrack of a play, Sam Sheppard's Tooth Of Crime, which to my knowledge was never edited into vinyl or CD. They will take 75 off and come back with the vastly different Changé D'Adresse. Together with the debut album, Dionysos' early career still have to find a legit Cd reissue (poor boots exists), while the inferior later albums have been out for a while) and unfortunately the vinyls are not the cheapest around. But if you must have only one, Prince Croule is it.

Review by Guldbamsen
4 stars The Collapsing Prince...

The French Canadian prog scene has received a very distinguished reputation around these parts and deservedly so too. With acts like Harmonium, Maneige and more recently Godspeed You! Black Emperor, this French speaking part of North America has been a hotbed for musical visions with a twist ever since the late 60s.

This is why I find it all the more puzzling that a band like Dionysos haven't received the same amount of glowing reviews as their contemporaries, because the music on offer here is just about tailor-made for you people out there with a hard on for the early eclectic prog rock sound. It's an amalgamation of different things, but first and foremost can you hear how the preceding decade has diminished in favour for an edgier feel - a more tumultuous and boisterous sound. Sure, the powerful and sludgy organ work does give off a psychedelic hippie silver-lining that reeks of early Santana, but surrounding it is an altogether different sounding animal. This is 1972 with all of its charm and far reaching musical ideas - with a magical content of melody, flair and that something special that escapes any wording out there.

The vocals here are all in French, and while they may be an acquired taste, they do however suit the music perfectly. They're breezy and wafting - floating over the different hard rocking soundscapes like swirling black feathers. This is something that feels infinitely French to me. I've heard it so many times, - especially a band like Harmonium utilise this breezy vocal trade, and what it does to the music, is to breathe a lightness into the midst of things - a sudden gust of autumnal wind cooling everything around it. Dionysos are no different, and on this their sophomore release Le Prince Croule, the counterpointing effect of rocking edgy guitars and that of those vocals are downright gorgeous.

Apart from the closing cut that infuses long jams and inspired unorthodox vocal sections, all of these tracks are short and to the point - even if they feel developed and large in scope. They have a way of melting together creating a red line running all the way through the album, and more than once did I feel transported deep into a sonic tale of sorcery and thick French wine.

Le Prince Croule simply means the collapsing prince.....?!? My high school French has sadly met its match here, even if the odd phrase seems recognisable and decipherable. You do, however, not need to speak the language to get with the program here. There's plenty of things to enjoy besides the lyrical content, and to those of us who get woozy whenever a guitar jumps into overdrive and starts soaring electrically high above our heads, - we certainly get treated to some eargasms en route.

There's a distinct early feel to this one. I am reminded of bands like Raw Material and a decisively more symphonic and psychedelic sounding Van Damme Generator. All in all Dionysos strike me as the French Canadian version of Os Mundi, but then again writing something like that only makes sense to me and a couple of German pensioners. We're talking obscure here - though not because of a weird unapproachable sound. More like bad exposure and hard to find albums, which similarly echoes the feeling I have regarding Dionysos. These guys deserve far more attention, and if you by some miraculous touch of faith stumble over one of their reissued albums, then I wholeheartedly recommend them. This is sonic honey right here!

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars 4.5 stars. There were so many bands from Quebec that I didn't know about until I joined this site. In Ontario here we usually just heard Pop bands from Quebec who sang in English. So yes my mind has been opened to some amazing French bands and albums that were just next door to our province here. And it took a Dane (Bamsen) to introduce me to this particular band and for that I thankyou David ! Man what a discovery this has been for me. This is adventerous, experimental, heavy and very proggy.

"Lever De Prince" has a very interesting soundscape with so much going on. Vocals a minute in. The guitar comes to the fore after 2 1/2 minutes. The vocals are very passionate at times especially to end the song. "Chanson Du Courage" is a relaxed tune with pleasant vocals. It does turn nasty before a minute instrumentally as the vocals stop. That opening sound is back though with vocals after 2 minutes. "Demain La Vie" has some atmosphere to start as the vocals and a beat rise out of it. Some powerful organ follows along with guitar. So good. The tempo picks up but then slows back down before 3 minutes. It settles back again as the intro is reprised with atmosphere but then it builds again. My God ! "Terreur Et Masque" opens with organ and a heavy sound as the vocals join in. The vocals stop as the guitar starts to solo. Nice. The vocals are back before 2 minutes. Piano joins in as the vocals and heaviness continues.

"Le Prince Jardine" features organ and a catchy sound with vocals. Great sound before 2 minutes as we get this instrumental interlude. "Safari" is uptempo and upbeat to start. It slows some and turns heavier before a minute. A guitar solo arrives after 2 minutes followed by a calm. Ripping guitar after 3 1/2 minutes and the drums join in then the organ as they kick some ass. "Ballade Inquiete" is mellow with reserved vocals and gentle guitar. The guitar is replaced by piano as these contrasts continue. "Terreur Et Jouie-Le Prince Croule" is the almost 14 minute closer. It's experimental with theatrical vocals to start but this is replaced by organ, guitar and a beat quickly. Vocals join in too. This is a slow burner. Great sound ! It turns almost dreamy before 3 minutes until before 7 minutes without vocals. They retrun though just after 7 minutes and become passionate before 9 minutes. The song then drifts along with floating organ. Guitar and some nasty organ follows along with some intense vocals. How good is this !

Just a killer album that is very entertaining as well. A must !

Latest members reviews

5 stars When I was young I always want to have French Canadian music. But in the late 60's it's only pop available in Québec.Even in 1965 there where what we called underground groups in Québec. None of those survived the Education révolution in 1968.That was the year where private school dissapeared. An ... (read more)

Report this review (#172085) | Posted by Thunderrock | Saturday, May 24, 2008 | Review Permanlink

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