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Eskaton Ardeur album cover
3.68 | 76 ratings | 8 reviews | 16% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1980

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Ardeur (2:30)
2. Couvert de gloire (4:25)
3. Attente (6:45)
4. Eskaton (5:58)
5. Un certain passage (6:53)
6. Pierre et l'ange (4:03)
7. Dagon (6:05)

Total Time 36:39

Bonus tracks on 2003 remaster:
8. Le chant de la terre (1979 single) (6:25)
9. If (1979 single) (4:24)

Line-up / Musicians

- Paule Kleynnaert / vocals
- Amara Tahir / vocals
- Gilles Rozenberg / guitar, organ, synth
- Marc Rozenberg / piano, Fender electric piano
- André Bernardi / bass
- Gérard Konig / drums

- Patrick Lemercier / violin (2,5)
- Alain Blésing / guitar (8,9)
- Eric Guillaume / Fender electric piano (8,9)

Releases information

Artwork: Stephane Dumont

LP Musique Post Atomique - E 38001 (1980, France)

CD Soleil Zeuhl - SZ10 (2003, France) Remastered by François Terrazzoni with 2 bonus tracks and different track order

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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ESKATON Ardeur ratings distribution

(76 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(16%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(57%)
Good, but non-essential (21%)
Collectors/fans only (3%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)

ESKATON Ardeur reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars ESKATON have slimmed down from an 8 piece band to a 6 piece band for this recording. There are guest musicians adding violin, piano and guitar although the piano and guitar were both played on the final two tracks that weren't originally on this album, but were the "a" and "b" sides of a single the band released.

The first song "Ardeur" is an uptempo track with steady drums and vocal melodies right off the bat. We get some guest violin melodies as well. The song calms right down with some organ before reverting back to the original melody. Good song. "Couvert De Gloire" features keys and vocals that sound especially good 1 1/2 minutes in. These two ladies can sing ! The song ends in dramatic fashion with a collage of sounds. This is my least favourite song here, but it's still well done. "Pierre Et L'Ange" is another uptempo song with drums, vocals and piano leading the way. Synths are prominant late but check out the melody 2 minutes in. "Attente" was also on the "4 Visions" album and is catchy with a great sound. The drums, synths, vocals and piano shine. The vocal lines late in the song are fantastic. "Dagon" has a spacey intro with pulsating keys, vocals and light drums eventually taking over. The vocals and keys join each other in a beautiful arrangment. The song breaks out before 5 1/2 minutes as a good beat with great drumming leads the way. It's hard not to move to this song at this point. Originally this was the final song on the album and I can understand why.

"Un Certain Passage" is mellow to begin with as violin, vocals and keys create the soundscape. Eventually the vocals, light drums and violin make such a beautiful melody, so uplifting. The song then starts to intensify before settling back down to end it. "Eskaton" is the other song that was on "4 Visions". This is my favourite with the ANEKDOTEN-like guitar melodies that come and go. This song has a great sound to it and it's also heavier. I also love the way the two vocalsists are singing different parts at the same time. Just an amazing song. The first bonus track is a definite let down after hearing "Eskaton". Good bass lines though and the keys and drums are certainly active. "If" opens with the sound of wind blowing as organ comes in and the beat becomes relentless.The vocals come and go, mostly they just go. This is a very good song from the band, it must have been the "a" side single.

Yukorin the Zeuhl expert, when comparing this album to "4 Visions" said "I prefer the rougher, younger sister "Ardeur". And it's hard for me not to agree. They both are "must haves" as far as i'm concerned. And how can you pick one sister over the other ? Pick them both up.

Review by Sean Trane
3 stars 3.5 stars really!!!

First album proper (read: released as a vinyl and marketed properly) from Eskaton, Ardeur (fervour) takes from where 4 Vision had left things. The group has lost guitarist Blésing and keyboardist Guillaume as members, and failed to replace them, which actually limits the group's capacities in terms of variety, even if violinist Lemercier comes in on two tracks. As opposed to the debut album, the lion's share of the songs is written by Marc Rozenberg, leaving just two songs to bassist Bernardi. But counting the two bonus Bernardi tracks from a previous EP, the balance evens out a bit more.

What we have here is a Magma-derivate and unfortunately Ardeur, unlike 4 Vision or Fiction later, it fails to build its own personality, especially in the vocals dept, where you'd swear Stella and the gang finally had time to take up French to sing on this album. Music-wise Ardeur is closest to Udu Wudu with a huge bass sound, and the usual Zeuhl traits without any surprise, if you'll except the unusual intro of Pierre Et L'Ange and some bits of the otherwise too-long Dagon. Lemercier does bring in a much-needed breath of fresh air with his violin in Un Certain Passage, but this is the only noticeable contribution of his. Apparently the group wasn't happy with their eponymous track on 4V and decided to give it another shot. Can't tell you which is better, though!

Included here are two bonus tracks from a two-tracks EP Musique Post-Atomique that was released prior to Ardeur and recorded with the full 4 Vision line-up. Chant De La Terre (Song Of The Earth) is a funky version of Zeuhl, stylistically halfway between their debut album and this one. If starts on windy sounds then flies on a war march at speed of light, with entertaining patterns with both Rozenberg brothers soaring with their respective organ and electric piano and wordless scats from the two singing graces Amara and Paule.

This might come a bit as a surprise, but I think Ardeur is Eskaton's weaker album, preferring Fiction's unconventional and innovative Zeuhl or the debut album. What strikes most with Ardeur, is that the group makes no effort at all to distance themselves from the Kobaian galaxy, except in the two bonus tracks.

Review by Warthur
4 stars This one was recorded after 4 Visions but released earlier - 4 Visions having been hampered by its uncommercial structure. So, the band boiled down their Magma worship into smaller, bite-size chunks (though there is one longer song on here in the form of the 10 minutes long Dagon), but the tight song lengths does not mean they don't capture the style of classic Magma wonderfully. Eskaton set themselves apart from their inspiration by a more prominent inclusion of modern synthesisers into their music, but otherwise create an album which will appeal to most Magma fans - and whilst it doesn't measure up to Magma's absolute best works, it gives the likes of Udu Wudu a run for their money and I'd say it's clearly superior to Attahk.
Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Entering the new decade Eskaton would have the chance to record and move on to a proper release of an album.But no without any losses and changes.Alain Blesing and Eric Guillaume both left the band and the guitar was handed over to Gilles Rozenberg.Malicorne's Patrick Lemercier would join them on violin and Eskaton would record ''Ardeur'' at Studio Ramses in Paris during August 1980.The album was launched later in the year on the band's own Musique Post Atomique (named after the first single).

Very good and original Zeuhl/Fusion by Eskaton, actually with a very eclectic sound, not being afraid to face the period fashion, which wanted all remaining Prog bands adding even a touch of synths in their sound, but Eskaton never abandoned their love for intricate and adventurous arrangements, always propelled by their strong MAGMA influence.Elements of Jazz, Classical Music and Opera all ara combined in an excellent album, full of fascinating twists and turns, highlighted by the clever use of synthesizer in the process, placed next to the jazzy electric pianos, the Avant-Garde sounding acoustic ones and the mighty sound of organ.With Blesing out of the picture, Eskaton had moved to a more keyboard-centered sound, led by the changes on keyboards and piano and a superb rhythm section, as always with the Zeuhl groups the vocals are used at times like an additional instrument.''Ardeur'' is an album with tracks mostly delivered in fast-paced tunes and emphatic, jazzy-spiced orchestrations with the nervous synths and the great electric piano opening the way for challenging and complex music.Throbbing bass lines and powerful drumming are still in the menu, the electric guitars are not particularly apparent, but their addition makes up for an even more dense sound, while some of the keyboard solos and rhythms, executed at the same time, are simply fantastic.I think the French language couldn't be more suitable for such a musical background and the female choir offers a combination of wordless lines and operatic lyrics in another great contribution to the album.

Zeuhl/Fusion towards its best quality.With intelligent display of synths, with awesome electric and acoustic piano, with intense and passionate vocals and, above all, rich and convincing progressive music.Highly recommended.

Review by siLLy puPPy
COLLABORATOR PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams
3 stars ESKATON are famous in the zeuhl section of the progressive rock universe for having released its second recorded album ARDEUR before it released its classic first recorded "4 Visions" the following year. This band jumped on the zeuhl bandwagon immediately after Magma unleashed its debut album in 1970 but it would take an entire decade for ESKATON to finally release this second recording ARDEUR as its debut album in 1980. The band originally was formed as ESKATON KOMMANDKESTRA which also showed a clear and direct influence to Magma but the second part was dropped before any albums were released. ARDEUR is the French word for "ardor" which means intensity of emotion, especially a strong desire, enthusiasm or devotion and nobody can refute the claims that ESKATON was indeed an enthusiastic Magma worshipper.

Being the second recorded album, ARDEUR saw the band diminish from eight members to only six with two vocalists, two keyboardists a bassist and a drummer. What set ESKATON apart from the world of Magma was the use of electric guitars although they were clearly not a dominant feature however three guest musicians sat in on a few tracks raising the number up to nine. While the band would become more original as it went along through the 80s underground, in the beginning ESKATON were undeniable disciples of Magma with a nearly identical Jannick Top styled cyclical bass groove churning along at energetic tempos and accompanied by a series of keyboard stabs as well as a stentorian choral section in the classic Stella Vander ballpark with unfortunately little differentiating qualities.

"4 Visions" was recorded as far back as 1978 and the band preceded the release of ARDEUR with the single "Musique Post Atomique" in 1979 which wasn't released on any of the band's initial three albums. ESKATON originally released its early albums on cassette only and it wasn't re-released onto CD until 2003 despite the band having reached some international success as a zeuhl band. If you listen to the ESKATON canon in order of recording it's clear how ARDEUR was a bit of a step down not only in the richness of band members but also in the boldness displayed on "4 Visions" which is deemed a superior release and i won't argue with that at all. The problem with ARDEUR is that through its seven tracks is that they all end up sounding pretty much the same. You got a frenzied bass drive and the exact same template of the "Köhntarkösz" era Magma album which featured a more stripped down approach.

ESKATON seems to be second only to Magma in terms of popularity in the zeuhl world but i have to ask the question why? To my ears they are way too derivative and rarely distinguish themselves at all even on their most creative album "4 Visions." On ARDEUR the band pretty much skirts by with their Magma-by-the-books approach unlike many of the infinitely more creative zeuhl obscurities that existed simultaneously. Yeah ARDEUR is a pleasant journey into the Kobaian martial rhythms with a few guitar sounds as a supplement but when it comes down to it, ESKATON just sounds like a one-trick pony and not even performing a trick that hasn't already been fulfilled throughout the decade prior. Truly one of those albums i just can't get hot and bothered over, ARDEUR is the antithesis of enthusiasm, passion and devotion in my world.

Latest members reviews

4 stars Recorded after 4 Visions but released before it, Eskaton's first album release (after the 10 minute EP of 1979) is a little stripped back having lost two key band members. But, the shorter tracks and fast paced scatty vocals are incredibly catchy. Being slightly more accessible, in French rathe ... (read more)

Report this review (#2598449) | Posted by bartymj | Saturday, October 2, 2021 | Review Permanlink

3 stars The second album from Eskaton continues in the same vein as the debut album. For those who loves Magma, Eskaton is another band they should engross themselves in. On this album, place themselves as a middle of the road Zeuhl band. The music is driven by female vocals, some very pulsating Hamm ... (read more)

Report this review (#372877) | Posted by toroddfuglesteg | Tuesday, January 4, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars All right, so what we have here is a little Magmaesque Zeuhl brought back to planet Earth. I hear reminders of second generation King Crimson throughout as well, so in that respect, I'd say that Eskaton expands outside of the Zeuhl realm in a way that Magma does not. Some people with an immediat ... (read more)

Report this review (#170649) | Posted by kabright | Sunday, May 11, 2008 | Review Permanlink

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