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Seven Reizh

Symphonic Prog

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Seven Reizh L'Albatros album cover
3.75 | 103 ratings | 3 reviews | 26% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2018

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Le Pavillon Chinois (3:59)
2. Brizh (14:48)
3. Tiqit Weman (5:52)
4. Dalc'h Mad (6:55)
5. Klasker-bara (4:40)
6. Kriz (9:27)
7. Lostmarc'h (9:59)
8. Er Lein (9:30)

Total Time 65:10

Line-up / Musicians

- Claude Mignon / composer, arrangements, electric, lap steel & acoustic guitars, piano, synths
- Gérard Le Dortz / lyrics & novel writer

- Farid Aït Siameur / Kabyle vocals
- Laurène Bourvon / English & French vocals
- Bleunwenn Mével / Breton vocals
- Stefanie Théobald / French & German vocals
- Louis Mével / harmony vocals
- Olivier Salmon / electric & acoustic guitars
- Ronan Hilaireau / piano
- Régis Huiban / accordion
- Bernard Le Dréau / tenor saxophone, clarinet
- Ewan Le Gallic / Scottish bagpipes
- Loïc Bléjan / Uillean pipes
- Bro An Aberioù / pipe band led by Goulwen Bono
- Gwenaël Mével / whistles, bombard
- Gwendal Mével / concert flute
- Michel Hoffmann / oboe
- Philippe Durand / horn
- Cyrille Bonneau / duduk
- Sébastien Charlier / harmonica
- Shane Lestideau / violin
- Jonathan Dour / violin
- François Pernel / Celtic harp
- Marcel Aubré / ehru
- Mihai Trestian / cimbalom
- Olivier Carole / basses
- Thierry Runarvot / double bass
- Gurvan Mével / drums, percussion

Note : The actual instrumentation could not be fully confirmed at this moment

Releases information

With a book, consisting of the second part of the novel "La barque ailée et l'Albatros", plus a CD

Artwork: Gérard Le Dortz

CD Seven Reizh Editions (2018, France)

Thanks to mbzr48 for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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Buy SEVEN REIZH L'Albatros Music

SEVEN REIZH L'Albatros ratings distribution

(103 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(26%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(40%)
Good, but non-essential (19%)
Collectors/fans only (11%)
Poor. Only for completionists (5%)

SEVEN REIZH L'Albatros reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The only other Seven Reizh album I've heard is 2001's Strinkadenn Ys--one of my five favorite albums from that year. As the band and its composers did so well on that album, there is an attempt to merge and blend the musical traditions of different cultures and ethnicities--here more toward West-East, Celtic and Arabic. Apparently, I've just learned, the four Seven Reizh musical releases--Strinkadenn Ys, Samsara, La Barque Ail'e, and L'albatross--are meant to be a "quadrilogy," four album releases intended to musically convey the story as told in an accompanying fantasy novel--one that tells the "history" of the adventures of a 19th Century Bretagnais world-traveling sailor named Jean-Marie Le Bris who is also imagining and aspiring to invent an "aerial ship" (the "barque aill'e"). I love the fact that composer Claude Mignon and novelist-production designer G'rard Le Dortz show the esteem in which they hold their contributing vocalists (who are all wonderful) by listing them first among their credited contributors. As you listen to any of the Seven Reizh albums you'll understand why: These albums are unique in the way they are telling the story--the novel--in a kind of conversational/narrational format with all vocalists making appearances over the course of each and every song--and using multiple languages and many, many ethnic music traditions, to do so.

1. "Le Pavillon Chinois" (3:59) The title says it all: music stylized Chinese. Could be a travel video soundtrack. The takeover of the main melody from Chinese flutes to Celtic Uilleann pipes at 2:30 is interesting--and then German vocals! (8.5/10)

2. "Brizh" (14:48) slow, cinematic music plods beneath violin and English vocals of Laur'ne Bourvon. The synth "Strings" lead that follows the first verse sounds a little dated, but the breathy, vulnerable vocal (not unlike KOOP/LITTLE DRAGON's Yukimi Nagano) is awesome. At :00 the singer and language of choice change. I'm not much of a fan of saxophone, so the long Dick Parry-like solo in the sixth and seventh minutes is not for me. The ensuing lull of orchestral nuances is gorgeous--great, emotional melody. More delicate female vocalists appear, wafting in and out, until at the 13:00 mark an explosion of sound unleashes more Dick Parry-like sax and some slide guitar co-soloing to the finish. Overall, a great song; a veritable classic prog epic. (9.5/10)

3. "Tiqit Weman" (5:52) opens with strings to support the Kabyle singing of Farid A't Siameur (who sounds a bit like older PETER GABRIEL). In the second minute the lead vocal switches to a female singing in a different language. Back and forth the two go; this is a conversation. The operatic voice of this lead singer is quite beautiful--and a great contrast to the raspy voice of A't Siameur. The underlying music is quite like a stage or cinematic musical--could be a Disney love song. It's beautiful. (9/10)

4. "Dalc'h Mad" (6:55) Farid A't Siameur bursts out from the opening note in his Kabyle tongue, isnging in a forceful, devotional way. Laur'ne Bourvon's English singing comes next over some incongruously heavy rock music. Again, a theatric conversation style of lyrical presentation unfolds as the two protagonists and their choral support seem to be expressing anguish and longing. Another great song that could belong in a Disney or Cirque du Soleil presentation. (9/10)

5. "Klasker-bara" (4:40) the most subdued and sad of the Celtic-Arabic blends on the album, here the exceptionally emotional vocal performances are perfectly matched and integreted with the music--much of which is orchestral acoustic. (9.5/10)

6. "Kriz" (9:27) electronically clipped drum with delicately played steel-string guitar and woodwinds opens this song for the first gentle, sleepy two minutes. Then Laur'ne and Farid continue their conversation. I am so engaged in this conversation, this story, I just wish I knew what it was about (in detail)! There is a major song shift at the three minute mark into a kind of Buddha Lounge oriental fantasy song. It's extremely pretty! Lyrics are sung in French. Some cool drumming at the end of the fifth minute to signal another shift--one in which Farid enters and sings on multiple tracks with electric guitar power chords counter-balancing the Chinese erhu and then the English lyrics sung by Laur'ne. Nice guitar solo in the seventh/eighth minutes (especially its climactic section flwoing into the ninth minute). Oriental themes return and are woven among the continued soloing of the electric guitar to the end. Brilliant creation! (9.25/10)

7. "Lostmarc'h" (9:59) despite an unspectacular opening section--calm and desert-beautiful, sung in English--this one carries an incredibly touching emotional quality within both the multi-voice vocal performances and the instrumental fabric supporting it all. The musical foundation becomes more compelling with the entry of operatic voice of one of the women (Stefanie or Bleunwenn, I know not which). The conversational aspect of storytelling is quite apparent in this one as Laur'ne, Farid, and Stefanie/Bleunwenn take turns in the lead position. Eventually, the song finishes with some more wonderful acoustic and electric guitar soloing. In the end, this is truly a gorgeous song regardless of whether or not it ever develops or evolves into something surprising or unexpected. I'm just so glad someone is doing this kind of music. (9.25/10)

8. "Er Lein" (9:30) all-out Celtic rock (despite Farid's Kabyle vocals). After the opening three minutes, this song is amped up to full power all the way through until the final 30 seconds. The female vocals are awesome from start to finish--from the scrambled, almost mumbled openers into the thrum-supported doubled-up verses to the operatic Gaelic ones before Farid's entrance. Brilliant! The deep pulse of bass, drums, and keys balanced by the celtic cimbalom (zither/autoharp), celtic pipes and horns and guitar are so well done! Truly an awesome song! (9.5/10)

I greatly admire the successful melding of Celtic and Arabic traditions; perhaps there is a larger social-political statement being made here. Now knowing the continuous story line that this one concludes I will go back and add the middle two releases ((2006's Samsara and 2015's La barque aill'e) that I have yet to hear. Also, I must comment on the drastically improved sound production Messers. Mignon and Le Dortz have achieved since Strinkadenn Ys: it doesn't get much better than this.

Five stars; a masterpiece of cross-cultural storytelling progressive rock music.

Review by kenethlevine
4 stars This is another lavish epic from Claude Mignon, Gerard Le Dortz and their myriad guests, who show as much dedication to the project as its parents. Apparently "La Barq Ailee" and "L'Albatros" were originally conceived as the final part of a trilogy that began with "Strainkadenn Ys" in 2001, but the scope of the story and the limitations of CD lengths necessitated their split. It's therefore a "trilogy" in the manner of "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy". Underpromise and over deliver!

While the concept and production are as fantastical as they should be, and "L'Albatros" is somewhat more diverse and memorable than its predecessor, I feel unfair in judging it as somewhat formulaic. Most of the tracks clock in the high single digits, and follow the playbook of beginning reflectively, with one of the three main singers taking and sometimes relinquishing lead in the language of their character, after which the intensity builds to a bombastic end with the charge led by a wind instrument, sizzling electric guitar, or pipes. Like Loreena McKennitt, Seven Reizh is loyal to the Celtic tradition no matter what the lineage of the piece. Sure I hear Arabic and world influences, and even Chinese motifs in the opener, and this is undeniably symphonic in nature, but the filter is stuck on Celtic. Personally I don't mind that at all, but I sometimes find the music is so familiar and likeable that I take it for granted. For all the twists and turns, it's a bit predictable, but it does sound wonderful in a home stereo setting!

It's taken nigh 20 years for this work of the heart to reach fruition, but our gents have managed to liberate their albatross. Where to go next? Well deserved rest or perhaps a more conventional production? Now that doesn't seem very likely. 3.5 stars rounded up.

Latest members reviews

3 stars SEVEN REIZH came to hit my ears in 2006 with "Samsara", a concept album on world-prog notes of great beauty. I had in mind a varied instrumentation and an incredible number of musicians on stage! Then time made that I lost sight of them, knowing however that they had also mixed at the famous Rea ... (read more)

Report this review (#2934420) | Posted by alainPP | Monday, June 19, 2023 | Review Permanlink

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