Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography


Serge Bringolf


From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Serge Bringolf Strave album cover
3.68 | 24 ratings | 5 reviews | 17% 5 stars

Write a review

from partners
Studio Album, released in 1980

Songs / Tracks Listing

Disc 1 (34:30)
1. Delire parties I, II & III (16:30)
2. Strave parties I & II (18:00)

Disc 2 (33:00)
1. Utopie (18:00)
2. Jodwernssen (15:00)

Total Time 67:30

Line-up / Musicians

- Serge Bringolf / drums, perscussion, sax, vocals
- Richard Muller / vibraphone
- Francois Grillot / bass
- Jean Golanet / trumpet, bugle
- Philippe Gisselmann / alto, baritone, tenor & soprano sax
- Pascal Beck / trombone
- Michael Nick / violin
- Mary Cherney / flute
- Jurgen Roth / alto flute on Jodwemssen (2/2)
- Mano Kuhn / vocals

Releases information

Omega / Om 67016
Soleil Zeuhl 27 (2011 CD reissue)

Thanks to listennow801 for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
Edit this entry


SERGE BRINGOLF Strave ratings distribution

(24 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(17%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(54%)
Good, but non-essential (25%)
Collectors/fans only (4%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

SERGE BRINGOLF Strave reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Marty McFly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Thanks Gabriel (look one page upwards, it's Tsevir) for telling me about this album. Because after few months of occasional listening of "Strave", I still don't know what to write about it. That is, however, not bad thing at all (instead of some who would feel confused), I take it calmly. For certain artists, it's understandable. Not just this, it's completely natural, it's part of their music.

However, I'm enjoying it. So you can read "inside" review of Gabe's, as he is fan of this genre. I am still on the edge of Zeuhl, listening just few albums from this tiny genre (however so mysterious that it is enough for ten times more albums from any other genre) that I can be called wannabe Zeuhl fan. Still in beginning.

And this is very important, perspective, experience (how many other albums you've heard, with which you can compare) and your relationship. I see transcendental elements in Z-et music. So I think that this is not too much sounding as Magma (obvious comparsion) is, it's rather more Jazzy album. And I mean typical Miles Davis Prog Jazz, his best era from late 60s. Not too much chant singing, if so, it's rather subtle and only sparsely used. Trumpets and xylophone-like instrument are dominating (one with force, other one in disguise) and helps to set mood closer to Jazz, some kind of brass band. However, it's still Zeuhl because of certain feeling that's there. And so, drumming is important (as in Magma, leader is drummer, so unusual in other genres), plays vital part in how you perceive the music. Your liking will also probably depend on how much you can follow delicate drumming. Rare thing in Zeuhl is use of violin (prominently in Utopia.

So I think that 4(-) is good rating from a little bit confused listener. As with similar music, you have to be in such mood to listen this, but when you are (and I'm now), you will enjoy it.

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars Serge Bringolf is certainly a very talented drummer but his talents go far beyond the kit. He's a great composer and also plays sax and guitar. He was influenced early on by KING CRIMSON, JETHRO TULL, SOFT MACHINE and LED ZEPPELLIN, but his biggest influence was Tony Williams, the legendary Jazz drummer of course. So yes he was sort of drawn into that Jazz style but certainly on this album we get a strong Zeuhl flavour as well. He used to frequent a concert venue that drew many French bands annually like VORTEX, ART ZOYD, GONG, ZAO, POTEMKINE etc but also a lot of English bands like NATIONAL HEALTH, Hugh Hopper, Elton Dean etc. It was at this venue that this double album was recorded in 1980 and it was Serge's first. Some call this Big Band Zeuhl because of the brass section and that it's a 10 piece band.

"Delire" is Jazzy to start with bass then the horns blast followed by vibes and vocal expressions.This continues until we get a change after 5 1/2 minutes.Vocals and a MAGMA flavour come in but this is lighter and more orchestral. It's still really good though.Vocals stop before 11 minutes as it settles some with bass and cymbals supporting as different sounds come and go over the next five plus minutes to end it. "Strave" opens with drums as deep bass lines join in. Horns and vibes follow.Violin comes and goes. Horns lead again then the vibes before 6 minutes. A calm 8 minutes in as drums only offer up some random patterns. Bass before 11 minutes as other sounds join in including vocal expressions. A Zeuhl flavour to the vocals 16 minutes in that go on until after 18 minutes. Nice.

"Utopie" opens with a beat as horns join in followed by vibes and violin. I like the repetitive horns here. Vocal expressions after 6 minutes. A change after 9 1/2 minutes.Violin joins in then the bass leads before 12 minutes.The violin is back then horns. Flute late. "Jodwernssen" opens with the horns blasting and then it settles in before a minute.Vocals join in briefly but they will come and go. A change 4 minutes in as a Zeuhl rhythm takes over. Another change before 9 minutes and this reminds me of the bass on EIDER STELLAIRE's debut as the horns play over top.Violin late along with flute and vibes.

I would have liked this more if it was a single album but it's hard to complain about so much great music even if it is kind of samey throughout. A solid 4 stars.

Review by Guldbamsen
4 stars Teutonic fusion

Zeuhl has always been a branch of the jazz rock happening in the late sixties early 70s, and whilst a group such as Magma started out on the jazzier side of things, their real characteristic sound that made them (somewhat) famous is infinitely more rooted in the rock side of the equation. The best word I can come up with, that somehow encapsulates this magnificent genre, although there are many different aspects to it, is perhaps teutonic. Serge Bringolf's Strave certainly fits the teutonic moniker. It's music that towers high over you like one of those mechanical octopus robots from War of the Worlds - walking rigidly through the landscape with the confidence of a true colossus.

The first cut here perfectly puts this imagery into focus. Rumbling fusionesque drumming with a unique sound to it - that has me thinking old hollow fuel containers and skips turned into percussive instruments. Swarming around these wonderful and rather tribal sounding drums, is a fantastic bass that edges its way into the most narrow of musical corners - sweeping every little note and expression around it up - enhancing it and then putting a spin on the sucker. Like most of my Zeuhl records, Strave is about the close and loving bond between these two pelting lovers. On this opening track the feel is almost symphonic - it is gentle and swaying - huge in size - opening up in these towering sonic sculptures. Had it not been for the openly tsch-tsch-tssscchc old school jazz rhythm - this one could have been a terrific symphonic epic with all what that entails of exotic fruits and capers. But it isn't - because hanging lightly onto the suave and docile teutonics here is this cold ethereal female voice, that to start with sounds just like an overweight opera-singer getting surprised in the shower with a sudden burst of ice cold water: AAOOOUGHHHHHH WOOOOOAAAAARRHHGGG. Instead of pausing her early morning shower serenade, she stumbles a bit thereby altering the tone of her voice slightly - picks herself up heroically and suddenly hits that sweet lofty spot, where this kind and jazzy brand of Zeuhl suddenly comes together and grows in size like a small horse on viagra.

After this piece of ethereal Zeuhl - I felt like I had this under wraps - like I knew what this thing was all about, but alas - or should I say fortunately I was dead wrong. Not that I wouldn't mind a whole album filled with music like this, but this is a double album, and when that second track first gets going, you just know you're in for a real treat.

I'm not going to make a track by track review - mostly because I am far too messy and all over the place for such a thing to work well, but also because it would take me half a bible to do so. Stick with the bible, if you want length ladies! I would, however, like to mention the second track here that kind of shatters one's hopes for a full so-called ethereal Zeuhl album. It is an astonishing track, and to people like myself who have grown up in Denmark with all these famous children's stories around them(Scandinavia has had a long-standing tradition of imaginative children's literature fx Astrid Lindgren), just think of Folk og RÝvere I Kardemommeby! Alright that probably didn't make much sense to most of you people, but this track reminds me so much of a book called Folks and Robbers in Cardamom Town(Loosely translated). This town is home to a lovable group of thieves who every night go out and rob whatever they can find. They usually sing about it in loud voices as well, which kind of ruins the plot altogether. Anyway, when these guys go out to sneak in the middle of the night - with cat paws and stealth mode, albeit singing, this is the kind of music I get. This Zeuhl! Man I was almost in tears - laughing like a buffoon when I first made this strange connection. Katjing! It's those robbers man!

Enough of that already! Yeah well sometimes I have to stop myself, before everything winds up in preschool city talking about Care-bears and Bugs Bunny. Let's get down to brass tax here! If you want something out of the ordinary - something that swings, towers overhead you with the will of a dozen cement crows - basking dark fusion and Zeuhl vibes in your face like it was going out of fashion, then throw your dog in the river immediately and get this pronto! Occupying the jazzier realm of Zeuhl, Strave utilizes tight and dry rhythm textures that seem to float alongside a wonderful concoction of reeds, doomsday piano, violin, operatic yet soothing vocals and bass lines that could borrow their way down to China inside the first few bars. A deep sonorous bass mole.

Strave is unique in the way that it feels like an early fusion record with all the maniacal slingshot manoeuvres and grand hand gestures that such a thing entails, although bearing a striking resemblance to what the Zeuhl acts were trying to do towards the end of the 70s, which was funnelling the music downwards into the ground - making it earthier and more funky. Here it's exactly that as well as being the direct opposite - even if that makes absolutely no sense at all. Oh well, I've done my job if you're just as confused as I am. This is after all music...

Latest members reviews

3 stars Serge Bringolf is clearly a fantastic drummer, and having a fantastic drummer is pretty much a requisite for early Zeuhl. His debut album is a fast paced jazz fusion effort with only hints of Magma-like Zeuhl. Built around drums, and interplay with rollicking basslines and horn sections its cert ... (read more)

Report this review (#2602216) | Posted by bartymj | Thursday, October 14, 2021 | Review Permanlink

4 stars A forgotten album; an excellent debut by a man who is not really well known for his musical work Serge Bringolf's first album, Strave, is an impressive effort. Classified as zeuhl, but including lots of jazz to it, he achieved to create a unique sound. Of course, since Bringolf is a drumm ... (read more)

Report this review (#281475) | Posted by Tsevir Leirbag | Tuesday, May 11, 2010 | Review Permanlink

Post a review of SERGE BRINGOLF "Strave"

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.