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MOVING GELATINE PLATES

Canterbury Scene • France


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Moving Gelatine Plates biography
MOVING GELATINE PLATES were in retrospect one of France's finest progressive rock bands. Forming in the wake of the tumultuous political situation of France in the late 60s, their music was distinctly apolitical, filled with a refreshing sense of humor and an irreverence that distinguished them from many of their more brooding contemporaries.

The seeds sown for success, their debut album was finally released by CBS in 1971 to a heavy critical acclaim. Lack of proper promotion, combined with poor management, led to a less successful tour this time around, but the band were nonetheless obliged to hit the studio again later that year to record their second album. As it turned out, "The World of Genius Hans" stands among the finest French progressive rock albums ever released, but the promotional problems that band had experienced with the first album continued throughout the touring and promotion of the second.

The two albums released by MOVING GELATINE PLATES cannot be considered anything less than classics, drawing together and fusing all manner of influences and setting the tone early on for a eclectic national French scene that was among the strongest in Europe.

: : : Jose Javier RodrÍguez, Celaya/Guanajuato : : :

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The World Of Genius HansThe World Of Genius Hans
Import
Musea 1972
Audio CD$13.11
$13.09 (used)
Moving Gelatine PlatesMoving Gelatine Plates
Import
Musea 1971
Audio CD$15.48
$8.99 (used)
Moving Gelatine PlatesMoving Gelatine Plates
Musea 2003
Audio CD$74.78 (used)
RemovingRemoving
Import
Musea 2006
Audio CD$16.94
Moving Gelatine Plates by Moving Gelatine PlatesMoving Gelatine Plates by Moving Gelatine Plates
Musea
Audio CD$54.73
Removing by Moving Gelatine Plates (2006-07-28)Removing by Moving Gelatine Plates (2006-07-28)
Musea
Audio CD$45.61
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MOVING GELATINE PLATES discography


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MOVING GELATINE PLATES top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.13 | 79 ratings
Moving Gelatine Plates
1971
4.34 | 89 ratings
The World Of Genius Hans
1972
3.47 | 13 ratings
Moving
1980
3.78 | 21 ratings
ReMoving
2006

MOVING GELATINE PLATES Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

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

2.00 | 1 ratings
Funny Doll
1972

MOVING GELATINE PLATES Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Moving Gelatine Plates by MOVING GELATINE PLATES album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.13 | 79 ratings

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Moving Gelatine Plates
Moving Gelatine Plates Canterbury Scene

Review by ALotOfBottle

5 stars Moving Gelatine Plates were one of the European bands playing Canterbury-style progressive rock under the influence of Soft Machine and Caravan. When the two bands put out their first and second albums in the late sixties and early seventies, they did not enjoy much success in their motherland. So instead, they decided to tour mainland Europe extensively and create a name for themselves in that part of the world. The large European fanbase gave birth to bands such as Picchio Dal Pozzo, Cos, Supersister, Pazop and many more. Moving Gelatine Plates was one of these bands. After the political conflicts in France in the late sixties, the group decided not to play politically-charged music, like so many of their contemporary countrymen did, and, as band members recall, to create art for the sake of creating art.

The music on Moving Gelatine Plates' self-titled debut album is to a high degree shaped by the previously mentioned Canterbury pioneers such as Caravan and Soft Machine. However, their music goes a lot further. Avant-rock influences of Frank Zappa's Mothers of Invention often reverbrate in many places. In addition, Moving Gelatine Plates have a characteristic quality, that may remind one of the style found on Henry Cow's 1973 debut album, Legend. The group does not put strong emphasis on songwriting nor improvisation, but rather on the natural progressing of the music, from once sequence to another. Despite their strong jazz influences, Moving Gelatine Plates' material is organized. In result, the music sounds unforced and therefore authentic, flowing naturally like the Seine river.

All of the band's complex musical ideas are executed in a professional and accurate way. The case with Moving Gelatine Plates is that one does not usually associate one musician with only one instrument, but rather assigns instruments to the musical layers individually. Gerard Bertram handles all the guitar parts. While he finds himself proficient on rapid guitar solos, he plays the role of a rhythm guitarist extremely well too. Maurice Hemlinger is responsible for all the keyboard parts. And by this I do not mean that there are a lot of keyboards on the album. The group seems to use keyboard instruments economically, only where keyboards are actually needed. Most of the time, however, Hemlinger is busy blowing air into his saxophones and a trumpet. His style could be associated with that of John Coltrane, Ronland Rahsaan Kirk, and Soft Machine's Elton Dean. The two soloists, Hemlinger and Bertram are supported by an extremely proficient rhythm section of Didier Thibault on bass and Gerard Pons on drums. Thibault and Pons also get a few solo parts in places.

There are five tracks on the album. These have a good amount of diversity between them. The album opens with odd electronic sounds on "London Cab", which quickly dissolves into a rapid jazz-rock jam, quite similar to what East Of Eden did on their album Snafu. "X-25" follows an interesting, organized construction with contrasting segments. On "Gelatine", the bassist Didier Thibault gets to display his great instrumentalism. With various solo parts on wind instruments and a guitar, the piece turns into a tasty jazz jam. "Last Song", the 14-minute highlight of the album, showcases all of the band's most characteristic elements. The album is closed with "Memories", a gentle, quiet piece with mellow flute and acoustic guitar parts.

All in all, Moving Gelatine Plates' self-titled debut album is definitely a must-listen for every Canterbury scene sound. Although it might not automatically remind one of works by Soft Machine, Caravan, Hatfield and the North or Egg, it owes a great deal to the sub-genre's distinctive sound. The band's sound is characterized by a high amount of vigor and energy combined with technical know-how and originality. In short: highly recommended!

 The World Of Genius Hans by MOVING GELATINE PLATES album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.34 | 89 ratings

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The World Of Genius Hans
Moving Gelatine Plates Canterbury Scene

Review by ALotOfBottle

4 stars After their excellent Canterbury-fueled self-titled debut album, Moving Gelatine Plates re-entered the studios to record their sophomore effort The World Of Genius Hans. First thing that one is likely to notice is its bizarre cover. Seems like an allusion to something? Maybe Trout Mask Replica? Who knows. Didier Thibault, the band's bassist, guitarist, and vocalist recalls: "The genius resides in madness. This is the idea behind that wacky cover with a calf head and parsley in its ears. It was more of a concept album. Then things were working well, because during that year after the release of our debut album we played more concerts and spent more time working together."

The style presented on The World Of Genius Hans could easily be described as a natural development from Moving Gelatine Plates' debut album. And even though one will find differences between these two releases, their second work is quite similar to the first one. Great jazz-fueled passages, numerous jams, catchy themes, choral arrangements, instrumental workouts, funky vocal parts, tongue-in-cheek moments ? these are just some of the elements that contribute to the fantastic musical extract of Moving Gelatine Plates.

The group consists of fantastic, well-trained musicians. Whether it's Maurice Helmlinger's trumpet, soprano saxophone, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, flute, organ, Gérard Bertram's guitars, Didier Thibault's bass and synthesizers or Gérard Pons's drums ? the instruments are handled with great ease and professionalism. The wide plethora of instruments used on The World Of Genius Hans provides a varied and diverse sound.

The original release comprises seven tracks (the CD reissue features five more). The 14-minute title track, "The World Of Genius Hans" highlights all of the previously mentioned characteristic elements of the band. Going through many segments, this is an incredibly pleasing musical journey. "Funny Doll" might have a little bit of a silly title, but since the very first notes, you know it's a masterpiece. It opens with a rapid Mingus-like passage with a funky vocal part in the middle. "Cauchemar" is characterized by great vocal arrangements. "We Were Lovin' Her" has fantastic, dreamy organ parts and is a bit different from all other pieces and has an almost Van Der Graaf Generator-like feel to it. The album closes with "Un Jour?", which features some interesting guitar sounds and great saxophone playing.

In comparison to their previous album, The World Of Genius Hans does not seem to bring anything new other than just the mature upgrade of the band's sound. Nonetheless, this is an incredible Canterbury scene album with a classy style that is by no means less tasteful or ambitious than the one of Soft Machine, Egg or Matching Mole. Personally, I slightly prefer their debut to The World Of Genius Hans, but this is an excellent work regardless. Highly recommended!

 The World Of Genius Hans by MOVING GELATINE PLATES album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.34 | 89 ratings

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The World Of Genius Hans
Moving Gelatine Plates Canterbury Scene

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Jazz-Rock/Fusion/Canterbury Team

4 stars Definitely more on the jazzy side of what we call Canterbury music. Moving Gelatine Plates' second album--released only a year after their surprisingly mature debut--displayed a better quality of recording and engineering to equally mature and accomplished instrumental jazz arrangements. Other than the debut's "London Cab," I like this album hands down over the debut. There is more warmth in the songs and performances here--and a feeling that the band is more relaxed, as if they are just grooving and enjoying themselves and their unique sound.

The opening song, the fourteen-minute epic title song, 1. "The World of Genius Hans" (14:05), is a very jazzy piece with some quite technically challenging ensemble sequences all working coherently and cohesively together. (9/10)

2. "Funny Doll" (4:29) opens with some light, bouncy interplay between sax and lead guitar with snappy bass and drum play beneath. Towards the end of the first minute the band gels into a full sound just before a male voice sings to us in a kind of Benmont TENCH kind of raspy way. The following jazz section is quite lovely, with the band playing really tightly and with some awesome multi-insturmental melodies. In the fourth minute it starts to get a little more mathematical just before a very fun section with a circus-master like vocal saying "good-bye" to us. Awesome song! (10/10)

3. "Astromonster" (6:20) opens with a rolling bass playing beneath some guitar, bassoon, and percussive oriental- sounding staccato melody weave. Then things slow down for a bit, as if to reset, before opening the third minute with some more straightforward, driving ensemble jazz with organ and fuzz bass. The fourth minute then brings in another shift--almost a bolero kind of Latin section with a very Santana sound and feel to it (except for the drums). The Santana-like melody is carried forward by the guitar until, at the end of the fifth minute, a faster paced start- and-slow alternating pattern is established for about a minute. The final minute sees a very slowed down regurgitation of one of the song's main melodies--from the flute! Weird but awesome song. (9/10)

The next song, 4. "Moving Theme" (3:56), feels like an 'tude, like a song created to exercise the group's dexterity and entrainment timing. Not particularly melodic or enjoyable except in the way one can appreciate the band members' command of their instruments and their ability to play tightly. It could just be what its title says: a theme for moving! (7/10)

5. "Cauchemar" (3:53) is a fast-paced piece that kind of follows one format for its entire four minutes--even trying to establish a melody line that follows the pop ABACAB-type of flow. (8/10)

6. "We Were Loving Her" (3:19) is a slow-to-unveil-itself piece that has a kind of MATCHING MOLE/SOFT MACHINE experimental feel to it. The song has nice melodies expressed by the saxophone in the last minute. (8/10)

7. "Un jour..." (1:30) has quite a SATIE feel to it despite it's being a bass and saxophone duet.

Perhaps not as silly as their debut but not as serious either. While not my favorite type of Canterbury music--I go for the more melodic fun stuff of Caravan and Supersister--it is not my least. The musicians and compositional team of MGP are definitely amazingly good and awesomely confident. What feels like their step forward in World of Genius Hans is how relaxed and fun the band feels to be on this album. Too bad they never generated the interest or fan base to sustain their passion.

 Moving Gelatine Plates by MOVING GELATINE PLATES album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.13 | 79 ratings

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Moving Gelatine Plates
Moving Gelatine Plates Canterbury Scene

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Jazz-Rock/Fusion/Canterbury Team

4 stars Bursting onto the Canterbury Scene from across La Manche in 1971 came Moving Gelatine Plates with a much more dynamic, jazz foundation but with all the requisite quirky, silliness that The Softs had given the world in the previous two or three years. A quartet, the band was greatly enhanced by the multi-instrumental talents of organ and reed player Maurice HEMLINGER. The rhythm section is quite skilled and the compositional content is quite mature. Guitarist Gerard BERTRAM is quite creative and versatile. In my opinion the only song deserving of a full five star rating is the rollicking, hillarious, rollercoaster-ride that is "London Cab" (7:34) (10/10)--though the flute-dominated instrumental "Memories" (3:21) is quite nice. The other songs are far more technically jazz tunes with some experimental production techniques and Canterbury structures. The down-tempo vocal section and final five minutes of "Last Song" is less jazzy and more experimental oddness, but not as fun or engaging as the like from EGG, The Softs, or NATIONAL HEALTH. Culturally, this album is quite an amazing accomplishment to come out of France after all of the political upheaval they had been through. Based on the musicianship alone this album earns a four star rating.
 The World Of Genius Hans by MOVING GELATINE PLATES album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.34 | 89 ratings

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The World Of Genius Hans
Moving Gelatine Plates Canterbury Scene

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE Team

5 stars MOVING GELATINE PLATES followed up their debut album only a year later with the phenomenal THE WORLD OF GENIUS HANS. This was the pinnacle of the first wave of progressive rock when every band was trying to one-up the other and by the time we get to 1972 we have some of the most complex musical machines pumping out some of the most creative and bizarre music ever. MGP were particularly ambitious in their approach as even to this day, albums like THE WORLD OF GENIUS HANS remain as some of the most ambitious and progressive music to ever hit the market. Like many similarly minded musical acts of the day who were pushing themselves so far and evolving musical ideas at the speed of light, the band found it impossible to coax the album buying public to hop onto their prog train and ended up breaking up after this album due to lack of sales, however time has been very kind to MOVING GELATINE PLATES and both of their first two albums have become regarded as two of the most adventurous musical extravaganzas to be had in the early years of prog and all of prog history for that matter. This is super complex music that takes time to seep in. There is simply too much to take in on after one, two or even ten listens but the rewards for the dedicated lover of complex music are immense due to the fact there are more than 450 developments leading to a fast and non-repetitive musical motif.

The distinct influences on board are from Soft Machine and Frank Zappa's jazz-fusion era only everything here is on steroids taking everything in the Canterbury Scene and jazz-fusion world and increasing the complexity manyfold while jettisoning the irritating solos of the debut album leaving behind a cohesive and mind-bending musical masterpiece. Despite the band only being a four-piece unit of Gerard Pons (drums), Didier Thibault (bass), Gerard Bertram (guitars and vocals) and Maurice Helmlinger (trumpet, saxes, flute and hammond organ)and a few additional guests that add trombone, bassoon, vibes and backing vocals, the music sounds more complex than an entire symphony in a music hall as it is the themes are elaborate offering instantly catchy melodies that turn into the hundreds of combinations of themes, instrumental tradeoffs and ridiculously labyrinthine song structures that keep this whole affair on a seemingly different musical plane.

This is for the seasoned prog lover and would surely alienate the uninitiated abecedarian. As much music as i have consumed in my ever growing addiction i would have to rate THE WORLD OF GENIUS HANS to be one of the most challenging and difficult-to-grasp albums that i have ever heard, yet it is not so far out as to not be able to pick melodies up from first listen, it's just that the sheer number of melodic developments, their brevity and overall musical structure is a staggering affair. I love these kinds of albums and wish there were more of them. MOVING GELATINE PLATES is a band that has gained recognition over time due to their being so ahead of the pack at the time of release. Thanks to Musea Records for bringing this kind of music into the current era for this music is timeless. On the CD releases there are five extra tracks that are half of the third MGP's release that came out in 1980 only under the moniker MOVING. They are randomly distributed between the first two albums and although not anywhere near the complexity of the first two releases still make for a decent listen. THE WORLD OF GENIUS HANS is a mega-masterpiece in my world and a desert isle pick for sure since even after a gazillion listens i can still listen to this at any given moment.

 Moving Gelatine Plates by MOVING GELATINE PLATES album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.13 | 79 ratings

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Moving Gelatine Plates
Moving Gelatine Plates Canterbury Scene

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE Team

5 stars MOVING GELATINE PLATES was a short-lived band formed by Gérard Bertram (guitarist) and Didier Thibault (bassist) who met in 1966 when they were both wee teenagers at 14 years of age in school. These guys had a huge interest in the jazz-fusion scene that was blossoming in the late 60s and were especially influenced by Soft Machine and Caravan. MOVING GELATINE PLATES are also notorious for being the first non-English band to fall into the Canterbury Scene. These guys came from from Sartrouville, France but because of their strong influences and willingness to eschew the political leanings of the early 70s and worship the whimsical and predominantly instrumental instead, they have been lumped into the Canterbury Scene labeling. The music sounds very Canterbury and yet maintains a strong uniqueness at the same time.

After acquiring the extra talents of Gérard Pons (drums) and Maurice Hemlinger (organ, trumpet, soprano and tenor sax, flute) the band found the right chemistry and talent to create one EXCELLENT debut album. This album is so packed full of musical integrity that it is hard to believe that it is only slightly over 36 minutes long. These guys hit all the right notes and created all the best aspects of rock and jazz-fusion with tight sophisticated melodic compositions. This is one of the most energetic albums i've heard from 1971. The band is simply on fire with all the hooks, leads and infectious grooves that somehow maintain an accessible and seductive melodic systematic approach married with the extreme complexity that every progressive rock band of the day was striving to create in order to outdo the others. This is catchy enough to keep you entertained but complex enough that you keep coming back for more.They simply created a perfectly balanced sound that took all the complexities of progressive rock, all the addictive melodic approaches of jazz and classical musical, put them in a blender and dished them out like the tastiest of fresh pastries on the Champs-Élysées.

Despite this being a brilliant debut album that blows away most of the competition, i am in agreement with everyone else who feels that the drum solo on "Last Song" is waaaaaaaay too long for its own good, but other than that one faux pas (and really it isn't bad, it just ruins an otherwise perfect album) we have a ridiculously consistent album that more than stands the test of time. In a perfect world this band would have made the cover of Rolling Stone. Yeah, that perfect world that i wish i was in, but hey! This album is real. It was made and believe it or not, the next one is even BETTER :P

If you own the CD you will find that in addition to the original 5 tracks there are 4 bonus tracks that come from their comeback album under the truncated band name MOVING. For some reason someone deemed it wise to disperse these tracks in no particular order between the debut and album and the second "The Genius Of Hans." Makes no sense but if you own the first two albums on CD you will essentially own the third one as well. No it's not as good as the first two but not totally shabby either. 4.5 rounded up!

 The World Of Genius Hans by MOVING GELATINE PLATES album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.34 | 89 ratings

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The World Of Genius Hans
Moving Gelatine Plates Canterbury Scene

Review by DamoXt7942
Forum & Site Admin Group RIO/Avant/Zeuhl & Neo Teams

5 stars What an amazing palpitation, what an incredible thunderstorm, created with lots of normal instruments and lots of abnormal music vibes. It's a remarkable surprise this album "The World Of Genius Hans" be released in 1972, the sunrise period of Canterbury / avantgarde scene all over the world. MGP members' power is fantastic and crazy, and their union of music status is very rigid really ... you will get shocked via their magnificent sound gems each of which should be tied confirmedly with others.

Their superb vibe above mentioned can be felt via the first titled track. Many essences this one has ... madness, delicacy, and intensive explosion ... all of them come from the inner space beneath their complex mind. But yes, not difficult to understand. You can keep yourself directly upon the soundscape, and purely enjoy their pleasant sound trip. They should make you happy and crazy along with their tricky bullet shower.

Let me say this album might be produced as a majestic satanic suite completely, and not be divided with pieces of tracks but all songs can be thought as movements of a suite. Until the last track "Un Jour ...", they might squeeze their quirkiness deep into our brain. Again I shout, what a surprise this album be completed in 1972. No suspicion their novelty and bizarre soundscape should construct permanently not only the Canterbury but also RIO / Avant music scene as a perfect sound credential. Bravo.

 ReMoving by MOVING GELATINE PLATES album cover Studio Album, 2006
3.78 | 21 ratings

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ReMoving
Moving Gelatine Plates Canterbury Scene

Review by Sagichim
Collaborator Eclectic Prog Team

4 stars This must be one of the best comeback albums I've ever heard, I'm always a little hesitant in purchasing an album by a band who's golden era was 30 years ago, especially if I really liked their albums. I'm not sure Moving Gelatine Plates needs any introduction around here since so many people thinks so highly of their two first albums. Their third album "Moving" released in 1980, although contained some good material, is often regarded as subpar to the previous ones, but this is not the case with their latest album "Removing" which proves that Didier Thibault, the man (and voice) behind this band has still got it. This line up is completely new but still manages to sound very much like the old MGP, infact they are not trying to bring the 70's sound again, just the old spirit.

So when you're approaching a MGP album, what do you expect it to have? Fuzz bass, clever arrangements played with wind instruments as an integral part of their sound, fun vocals and overall a humoristic and breezy atmosphere. Well, everything seems to be in order then, you have all the ingredients for one more terrific album from this ultra cool band. As much as we all love those 70's albums, this is not trying to be a retro kind of album, but on the other hand succeeds on being a product of its time. The band's style is pretty much intact and you can easily sense they are much more mature now, the compositions are a little more focused and less experimental and adventurous then before, that of course doesn't mean it's less progy, these guys are far from losing their artistic side. The music this time has less canterbury feel (infact you can say it's almost gone) and more jazzy progressive style. There are no freak out outbursts or any crazy ideas, they are not trying to challenge the listener with sudden breaks or all kind of freaky directions, everything is on the spot, so carefully thought out, and immaculately executed, the songwriting is mature and right and the songs contains a huge amount of small details weaved into the melodies, which I think might take a little time to fully notice and appreciate. While their first two albums had a more complex nature, this album, although still maintaining a certain amount of complexity is trying to focus on delivering a good melody or have a cool theme which the band develops. I can't say which side of the band I prefer, but I certainly like both of them.

As I said the songs are not as complex as before but the band knows how to compensate it by a clever use of layers, the wind instruments contribute so much, and colorfully painting the songs with all kinds of warm colors, from filling the songs with a beautiful background to playing the leads or essentially soloing, this is of course achieved with a respectable arsenal of instruments like saxophone, trumpet, violin, flute, piano and cello, in addition to keys, guitars, bass and drums. Needless to say that this band is incapable of delivering anything weak, the high level of creativity is maintained throughout the entire album. But as much as I enjoy their songwriting and arrangements, what truly wins the jackpot here is the playing itself, which is no less than stellar!! every member delivers memorable hooks played with great passion and feel, just check out "Enigme" a jazzy jam featuring a stunning playful trumpet along with some cool guitar playing. "Breakdown" is another highlight, a progy tune which includes all the instruments weaved inside each other with an inspiring interplay, excellent violin work on this one. I won't go into each song because it will take forever, but I think you get the picture.

I hope Mr. Thibault hasen't said his final words yet and will grace us with at least one more album sometime soon, but in the meantime we have this beautiful album to enjoy. He cleverly surrounded himself with an incredible set of musicians and by this managed to outdo himself and deliver a well crafted album full of great sensitivity. Although it's hard to beat the classics this is recommended not only to fans of the band but to newcomers as well. A little more than 4 stars by my book.

 The World Of Genius Hans by MOVING GELATINE PLATES album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.34 | 89 ratings

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The World Of Genius Hans
Moving Gelatine Plates Canterbury Scene

Review by zravkapt
Special Collaborator Post/Math Rock Team

4 stars Here we have one of the greatest albums from the Canterbury Scene, and would you expect any less from a French band? Along with Gong and Magma this band is one of the more interesting and important French prog groups of the 1970s. Speaking of Gong, you can hear some similarities here with them but generally this is more pre-Third Softs influenced. This second album is much better than the first, as good as the debut was. The writing, playing and production are all an improvement. Oh, and that cover! Probably one of the most interesting and iconic album covers in prog rock, I bet more people are familiar with that cover than a note of the band's music!

This features the same line-up as the debut. Once again Maurice Hemlinger flawlessly switches between organ, trumpet, flute and saxes. Supposedly the members were having a lot of financial difficulty and had to borrow instruments from other French rock bands or sell their own. That's the price you pay for trying to make Canterbury style music in early '70s France. Again the lyrics are in English but there seems to be more wordless harmony singing than on the debut. Still lots of great fuzz-bass and wah-guitar.

The 14-minute title track is the highlight of the whole album and one of the best Canterbury epics. Great guitar and bass tones (including wah-bass). Before 2 minutes you hear some haunting "ohh" harmony vocals, this slowly turns into more Gregorian chant like vocals in English; one of the members has a cool deep voice. Gets almost Gong sounding after 4 minutes, not too surprising since both groups are based in France. I love when the sax and guitar play in unison. More great harmony vocals later. Before 11 minutes is one of the best parts with modified organ and wah-bass. This track keeps changing but nothing ever seems forced or out of place. A very flawless epic.

"Funny Doll" is a very jazzy track, almost reminds me of the first Henry Cow album. That is until the vocals come in, then it sounds more like the brass-rock of Blood, Sweat & Tears or early Chicago...except with no brass section. "Astromonster" starts out very Gong-like. Once the fuzz-bass kicks in things get exciting. When the drums enter the band goes into classic Canterbury jamming. In the middle is some awesome drumming with some great organ and guitar. I love the guitar filtered through a Leslie speaker sound, popular in the late '60s/early 70s.

"Moving Theme" begins slowed down then gets sped up to normal speed as the band jams away in full odd-metered jazzy Canterbury fashion with the obligatory fuzz-bass. Features a bit of start/stop playing. As is typical with this group the song changes into different sections (some not long at all) often. "Cauchemar" features what sounds like a harpsichord at the beginning. A very melodic song for the most part. More great guitar/sax unison playing. Later on is more of that great harmony singing, this time doubling the sax.

I like the sustained organ chord that opens "We Were Loving Her." Overdubbed sounds from an unidentified source and fuzz-bass are joined by more oddball sounds. Then the bass takes the band (without drums) into a song with English lyrics. Love the spacey sound in the background. "Un Jour..." is a mellow and laid-back closer with a great guitar tone. Like the previous song, there are no drums. That last song and "Funny Doll" are about the only things keeping this from being a masterpiece. Both are good but not quite as strong as the rest of the album, which is excellent Canterbury. I would rate this a 4.5 (almost masterpiece) but will round down to 4 stars. Highly recommended.

 The World Of Genius Hans by MOVING GELATINE PLATES album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.34 | 89 ratings

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The World Of Genius Hans
Moving Gelatine Plates Canterbury Scene

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

5 stars This one is slightly better than the group's debut, but there's not much to tell them apart. Once again, the Canterbury scene is the primary inspiration - particularly Soft Machine before that band took a turn into po-faced jazz, with Caravan also peeping through here and there and a bit of Zappa-esque humour to boot (check out that album cover - Cow Mask Replica, anyone?). This album sees them broaden their musical horizon a bit, the first track opening with a furious bassline which sounds like the more progressive end of the funk scene before developing into a Canterbury epic, but they don't diverge from the first album's approach so greatly as to alienate anyone who enjoyed that one. These first two Moving Gelatine Plates albums are essential listening for anyone who needs reminding that the Canterbury scene extended well beyond Canterbury.
Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition.

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