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EDHELS

Neo-Prog • Monaco


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Edhels biography
EDHELS is led by multi-instrumentalist Marc Ceccotti (but most praised for his acoustic guitar work), and was co-founded by guitarist Jean-Louis Suzzoni in the early 1980's. They met at the Monaco Academy of Music, and soon added percussionist, and keyboard player, Noel Damon. For the first album, 1981's "The Bursting," violinist Sandrine Brisson, keyboardist Philippe Peratonnere, and keyboardist /percussionist Jacky Rosati were also brought aboard. Unfortunately, this first effort was shelved. It did not see release until 2001. After things settled down, Sandrine and Philippe had moved on, but Jacky remained as a member of the band. This would be the lineup for the band's first three "official" albums (remember, "The Bursting" was still not available), all released by Musea.

The first changed occurred when Noel Damon left after the recording of 1991's "Astro-Logical." With the band in flux, Marc Ceccotti decided it was time to try it on his own. He recorded his first solo project, "M.A.S.C." in 1993. The band did regroup, and found Jean-Marc Bastianelli to replace Noel. They went back to the studio, and released "Angel's Promise" in 1997. Whereas all of the previous albums had been instrumental, this time they added vocals to mix. This new wrinkle was provided via new member, Jean-Marc. Also that year, the received the honor of prominently featured in Edward L. Macan's "Rocking the Classics: English Progressive Rock and the Counterculture." However, 1997 was not without drawbacks. After "Angel's Promise," Jacky decided to leave EDHELS.

After the latest shakeup, they leaped right back into action. Drummer Yannik Chavatier, and bass player Lionel Routier were enlisted, and they went into the studio. For this album, they were also on their own. Musea was not involved, and the album was self released. The result was 1998's "Universal." Details are a bit fuzzy, but there seems to be a bit of controversy surrounding this release. Some love it, and some despise it. It seems as if Cecotti brought this out into a large stage show, which was captured in the 2005 live release of the same name. He states that serious record company backing could not keep this collaboration afloat, so once again the future was uncertain.

After the turmoil, the core of the band (Ceccotti, Suzzoni, and Bastianelli) got back to basics, and released the instrumental album "Saltimbanques" in 2003. It also seems they decided to go back to the machine, because the album...
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Buy EDHELS Music


Angel's PromiseAngel's Promise
Import
Musea Records France 2006
Audio CD$14.75
$9.99 (used)
Astro LogicalAstro Logical
Musea 1991
Audio CD$25.00
$19.50 (used)
Still DreamStill Dream
1988
Audio CD$19.99
$15.98 (used)
UniversalUniversal
Mals Limited
Audio CD$23.39
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EDHELS discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

EDHELS top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.14 | 3 ratings
The Bursting
1981
2.10 | 11 ratings
Oriental Christmas
1985
3.19 | 17 ratings
Still Dream
1988
2.45 | 10 ratings
Astro - Logical
1991
2.86 | 10 ratings
Angel's Promise
1997
1.61 | 5 ratings
Universal
1998
4.14 | 7 ratings
Saltimbanques
2003

EDHELS Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

EDHELS Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

EDHELS Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

EDHELS Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

EDHELS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 The Bursting by EDHELS album cover Studio Album, 1981
2.14 | 3 ratings

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The Bursting
Edhels Neo-Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

2 stars The only known Prog band from Monaco was found in 1981 by its leader Marc Ceccotti.Ceccotti was previously involved in several local bands, after having studied at the Monaco Academy of Music.He set up the band along with classmate Jean-Louis Suzzoni on guitars and Noel Damon on keyboards and percussion.The same year the Monegasques recorded the demo ''The bursting'' along with guest musicians Jacky Rosati, Philippe Peratonnere (both on keyboards) and Sandrine Brisson on violin.It became commercially available several years later, when the band kept solding it as a CD-R via its website.

Being original is a good thing, but it can also lead to stylistical confusions and that was the case with Edhels' early recordings.The band produced six pieces of synth-drenched soundscapes with a deep guitar background, which shifted between acoustic and electric parts, but inexperience and lack of professional equipment led to below average material.Extremely poor programmed drums (propably coming out of some sort of Casio technology) and thin electronic movements resulted a flat, cold sound with limited emotional content and total lack of coherence between one piece's variations.Propably they attempted to go for a combination of Electronic Music with symphonic overtones and guitar-based Instrumental Rock with occasional dark perceptions, created through the sinister, muddy and laid-back guitar solos and a dramatic approach on keyboards, but the weak sound quality left much to be desired.The short ''L'Etrange quete'' sounds a bit more consistent with Fusion-like guitar solos over eerie synthesizers and developing sound effects, quite similar to TIEMKO, while the following ''Edhels (symphonie no.1)'' and ''Maleak (symphonie no.2)'' contain hints of old GENESIS and intense keyboards ala ALPHA III, even flirting with Neo Prog but with a more sterile approach and pronounced electronic sounds and effects, the quality of the recordings though is below the acceptable levels.

Propably Edhels were too young to offer such serious musical experiments.Dark yet smooth Electronic-Fusion with some decent moves, but overall very incosistent and pale.For fans of the band or maybe TIEMKO and similar groups.

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 Angel's Promise by EDHELS album cover Studio Album, 1997
2.86 | 10 ratings

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Angel's Promise
Edhels Neo-Prog

Review by Neu!mann
Prog Reviewer

3 stars The last album of the 20th century from the Monaco-based Edhels took the liabilities of their flawed 1991 "Astro Logical" album and turned them into virtues. The band's icy digital sound hadn't thawed in the previous six years, but this time they used it to their advantage, as heard in the potent opening rhythms of the album's kickoff track, "The Lord of the Fire". And the writing was more sensitive to instrumental color and melody, recalling the band's popular "Still Dream" album, recorded a full decade earlier but even now a career peak.

The addition of vocals is a bit of a shock, however. The instrumental music of Edhels was never geared toward actual songs, but the singing here is at least weird enough to add a not-unwelcome sense of cognitive dissonance. Check out the mock-heroic "Guinevre's Regrets", in which Arthur's queen delivers a backhand slap across the face of courtly chivalry: "Instead of cutting off dragons heads / You should have cut off your own / Bloody Lancelot of Camelot / Rot in hell, forever..." Take that, Thomas Mallory!

The oddball song interludes (all of them odd-numbered tracks, by the way) make a half-hearted effort to swim into mainstream waters, but the riptides of Marc Ceccotti's compositional eclecticism are a little too strong. From the lush Neo-Prog bombast of "On the Borderline of Sleep" to the idiosyncrasies of "Gentle But Not Giant" (take that too, Derek Shulman!), this is a collection of music dodging all over the Prog Rock map.

It might have been more effective as an unplugged effort, as suggested by the delicate acoustic guitar of "Life, Life". And with a total running-time of 70-minutes, be prepared to accept a little padding. Tighter editing might have revealed the four-star gem hidden somewhere inside it, but as it stands the album marked a welcome retreat toward a less clinical, more accessible style.

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 Astro - Logical by EDHELS album cover Studio Album, 1991
2.45 | 10 ratings

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Astro - Logical
Edhels Neo-Prog

Review by Neu!mann
Prog Reviewer

2 stars Marc Ceccotti's Monaco-Prog quartet release its fourth studio album in 1991, with a cheesy title, a tired concept, and some laughably tacky cover art (the pseudoscientific hokum of astrology really isn't all that sexy). After the disillusions that followed the supposed dawning of the Age of Aquarius, did an album of instrumental zodiac portraits make any sense? And if not, could it at least be salvaged by the music itself? The answer to both questions is: almost, but not entirely.

The album was released a mere three years after the band's popular 'Still Dream'. But even with the same line-up a lot had changed since 1988. Gone were the melodic Neo-Prog nods to classic '70s role models, replaced by a cold electronic soundstage more in step with the antiseptic early 1990's. However it all might have begun, the music in its finished form was digitized to a not-very flattering degree: cybernetic might be a better description.

A flesh-and-blood percussionist is credited, but he likely had to be plugged into his drum kit and re-programmed before every session. Even the guitarists (two of them, including Ceccotti) sound computerized. On the other hand, any musician who models his technique (and his tuning) after Robert Fripp or Alan Holdsworth deserves our applause, and the performances are often brilliant, even at their most mechanical.

The music too, beyond its impersonal cosmetic design, is never less than challenging. But the episodic framework, often within each song, keeps the listener at arm's length, never allowing even a casual brush of human contact. The album would have been far more involving with a little more organic warmth, but clearly that wasn't in the stars.

Appreciate it as a noble experiment: Progressive Rock by way of Isaac Asimov, or William Gibson. But don't expect too many repeat plays.

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 Still Dream by EDHELS album cover Studio Album, 1988
3.19 | 17 ratings

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Still Dream
Edhels Neo-Prog

Review by b_olariu
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Third album of this discrete band coming from a small country is better in any way then the previous album. Released in 1988 under the name of Still dream, this time Edhels make a more complex, uptempo and with much better arrangements, but with all that not really something special. The keybords are very lush, smooth , again Marc Ceccoti did a good job, but as I said before the music of Edhels suffers in great arrangements, it's not enough to have good musicians who can handle the instrument , must be some shining moments, at last here and there. This album has it's moments for sure, the arrangements are better though, they play a kind of neo prog not far from late '70's german albums like Tibet, what done Novalis in that times, Machiavel in some parts, even Camel or Mike Oldfield, more the melodic side of neo with lush keybords and melodic guitar elements, some elements have that new age touch tipycal for that period. The music is accesible most of the time, not a prog rock listner will not be afaraid to take alisten, but for sure not many will be pleased what they will here. Edhels is not a very popular band here aswell like on other sites, maybe because some of their albums are not on every corner, but aswell their music is nothing realy impressive, at least these two albums reviewed by me is nothing extraodrinary. The highlits are for sure Heart Door and Butterfly child, good pieces whre is shown the talent of Ceccoti, the rest are only ok, but good. So, a 3 star album to me, better in any way over Oriental christmas, but nothing close to a masterpiece or alike.

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 Oriental Christmas by EDHELS album cover Studio Album, 1985
2.10 | 11 ratings

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Oriental Christmas
Edhels Neo-Prog

Review by b_olariu
Prog Reviewer

2 stars Edhels is a progressiverock band from Monaco formed in early '80's by guitar player Marc Ceccotti. They beggin their career wanted to keep the prog flame alive in those dark years of prog, mid '80's. They succeded with this second album named Oriental christmas??, not realy. The album to my ears is to dull, to mellow, with a little great moments. Sometimes sounds like a cross between instrumental genesis but far less complex, Rousseau and some spacy moments ala Novalis, but the entire result is not great, realy. I had hard time listning to this album more then two times, in some moments I've almost got asleep. What bothers me is that the album, with the exception opening track , the best from here is not varied and the '80's keybords sound is all over, to mediocre to be a real intrest for progressive rock fans. The guitar lines are ok , Marc Ceccotti realy have some good moments here, but the songwritting is almost mediocre at best here. I'll be short, the album gets from me 2 stars, maybe 2.5 but no more then that for sure. One of the most unintristing albums from mid '80's from this scene for sure.

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 Still Dream by EDHELS album cover Studio Album, 1988
3.19 | 17 ratings

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Still Dream
Edhels Neo-Prog

Review by progrules
Prog Reviewer

4 stars There is one style of music (or better: prog) that will always appeal to me and is in fact my number one preference: the instrumental, melodic style preferably in the neo vein. And actually here we have a perfect example of that. This release by Edhels from the late eighties (!!) is just about how I like it most.

This is such elaborate music, very accessible, dreamy at times (the title is well chosen !) and simply captivating especially if you are in the right mood for it. Well, I'm in the mood for this most of the time except for those moments I want my music fierce and energetic. Because that's what this is NOT. It's extremely lush yet restrained and also laid back, very delicate also.

Describing each song is useless, it's the style what it's about here. I regret I have only found this album by Edhels, it's one of those bands that are pretty hard to find. But I'll keep searching if only out of curiosity what the other albums sound like. If it's the same as this one, I will buy them right away. Four stars without hesitation and recommended for fans of laid back, extremely melodic music.

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 Still Dream by EDHELS album cover Studio Album, 1988
3.19 | 17 ratings

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Still Dream
Edhels Neo-Prog

Review by Discographia

3 stars On 'Still Dream "here we are in the best of the group, nothing to do with the catastrophic" Astro-logical. "Here we are closer to the sumptuous" Oriental Christmas ", the first two titles are not excessively but achievable. third title "Boarding Pass" is a beautiful title, Guitar Hero beautiful, clean and beautiful. "Fee Winter" is a title very acoustic but very short and not annoying. The famous 'September Dawn' is here, here, the style of Best edhel is in his best side, the sound "edhel" in fact we do not think of everything King Crimson for example, a headline in any way the class. "Gael & Selena" does not drift into the shallows is a very cool way around the keyboard. "Christie Feline Girls" shows bad signs bad "edhel 'alas it will eventually become, but the title still hold the road." Still dream "air starts very simple and relaxing." Anibal "s Trip" Foley then offers an organ sound and guitar attack from the outset, standing out still other securities of the group, even the guitar solo as the final s'indentifie edhel and not another group. "At the edge of the sun reveals the sun do not come, but the charm of edhel 'is entered him. The last 2 tracks are not more famous, it seems to fill, but the last title short acoustic is fun just to finish ending on

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 Angel's Promise by EDHELS album cover Studio Album, 1997
2.86 | 10 ratings

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Angel's Promise
Edhels Neo-Prog

Review by Discographia

2 stars Here we are far from the great 'Oriental Christmas' the synth sounds are very dated and a strange taste for progressive rock. Fortunately, the guitar is level on "The Lord of the Fire." "Tension" is a title well done, very soft in the tradition of the best 'edhel. On "Iq 27" can be heard singing "edhel" To my great surprise, the song is really disappointing, singing in English to a group of Monaco, which makes it an accent really intolerable. The title 'Angel's Promise' is a beautiful title. "Guinevre's Regret" is a title very badly orchestrated, bad singing, bad sound, very disappointing, regret it so sacred. "Noah's Ark" is a title rather painful ... The next "On the borderland of sleep is also a wolf." Lights being Messages "is somehow the best of the group if one compares the other tracks on the album." Tales of Mr. K "is still sung, and c It is a disappointment once again uen. "Life, Life 'n dansu different kind, air, acoustic, closer to nature sounds." Gentle Giant but not "as unpleasant. The group nevertheless managed to raise the bar against the previous album which was a disaster 'Astro-Logical ". "And to think that I loved you so much" is a very good title to what the group is still. "Visions and meetings" thus closing the album on a good note.

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 Saltimbanques by EDHELS album cover Studio Album, 2003
4.14 | 7 ratings

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Saltimbanques
Edhels Neo-Prog

Review by Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars The seventh effort by this band finds them reaching yet another creative peak - the 2003 release "Saltimbanques" is a lovely progressive feast in which the use of weird sonorities (mixing psychedelia and fusion) frankly mixes well with a set of lightweight arrangements. So, here is a clever, softly delivered mixture of accessibility and solid experimentation. Experimenting with bizarre nuances of the prog genre in not that new in Edhels' history: their cornerstone album "Astro-Logical" found them incorporating an interesting amalgam of electronic frameworks and Crimsonian textures through creative, intricate melodies. "Saltimbanques" signifies a step beyond in this constant exploration performed by Ceccotti & co.: the rhythm section is utilized through rhythm computers, but this is not a chill-out or trance effort, since the rhythm sequences are intelligently adapted to the complex patterns and cadences inherent to the compositions. The namesake track opens up the album with gypsy colors, patently marked by agile acoustic guitar arpeggios and electric guitar solos, that at times get as bizarre as some sort of Fripp-meets-Holdsworth. 'Legende-III' brings a more relaxed ambience, relatively similar to a modernized Hackett: for a last minute rumpus, the mood gets subtly augmented without breaking the track's integrality. 'Schizo-Scherzo' bears a weird melodic development, but it is not challenging or inscrutable since its framework is serene and exotic: this is a beautiful, sober mixture of symphonic and jazz-pop. The same trend is pursed at 'Avignon', being even more sober. On the other hand, 'Rever avec Toi' and 'Nomad's Joke' are delicate symphonic ballads whose romantic vibes feel very ethereal. The band show how comfortable they feel dealing with constrained melodic structures functioning as a well-oiled ensemble. Also set on a slow tempo but with a defined jazzy tendency, 'Bruxelles' reminds us of 90s Holdsworth at his most introspective - besides its set of bizarre harmonic deliveries, this track is designed to motivate the warm side of the listener's heart. 'Paradoxical Intentions' bears a spacey aura very much a-la Vangelis with clear hints to the electronic side of the Projekcts, plus the recurrent exotic nuances evident in both the rhythm sequences and keyboard ornaments. You can describe this track as a cousin of most tracks included in the "Astro- Logical" album, and let me add that it comprises one of the most exciting guitar leads in the album. 'Eternelle' is kinder, taking a hard rock-friendly approach to a slow jazz-rock piece: the track is really fresh as it is melancholic. 'Siena' is pure fusion with acoustic predominance, simplistic yet cleverly evocative. So far, this album has been a beautiful travel of sound that is now about to be completed with the 11 ½ minute long closure 'Mare Temporis'. Even from the earliest passages we can figure that this piece is majestic and heavily lyrical. This piece might as well be the perfect soundtrack for a walk about the rooms of a desolate palace, big and pompous yet filled with some creepy atmosphere. The guitar solos, very Hackett-ish, sound like soft laments confidently displayed over the keyboard layers and mysterious piano chord progressions. For the last two minutes a climax arrives, not bombastic but clearly charged on an emotional level. The creepy and the ethereal remain fused in a single sonic source - even though this track states a contrast with most of the melodic schemes pursued in the other pieces, it serves as a powerful closure for the album. This Edhels album is a jewel in the progressive rock scene for the new millennium.

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 Astro - Logical by EDHELS album cover Studio Album, 1991
2.45 | 10 ratings

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Astro - Logical
Edhels Neo-Prog

Review by Discographia

1 stars This group of Monaco presents here his worst album. start to the end titles are all missed, and uninteresting. "Edhel" offers here a progressive rock of the worst, sloppy sound and very syntéhtique. The group demonstrates and shows all his faults in a single album, the worst tracks on the album 'Angel's Promise' are here in their present form. Thank you not to listen to this album of "edhel" first, otherwise, no interest, no desire or will not be available to you. I was lucky enough to know the beautiful "Oriental Christmas" before, but this album is still a terrible shock, seeing this group that literally touches the bottom of the abyss. Real shame, no title or perhaps the best album title would THERE could serve a future album of the group improving.

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