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JULVERNE

RIO/Avant-Prog • Belgium


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Julverne biography
If one was to draw a map of the Belgium prog scene (outside of the symphonic current) , all period considered and all currents considered (Zeuhl, Canterbury , RIO , Avant-prog , jazz-rock all fitting into what is called CHAMBER ROCK - but I choose to call it Chamber prog , because some of those bands are not really rock anymore) , then JULVERNE would likely be right in the centre of the story. All musicians have a link with all major bands from that small surrealist country where culture is the main gathering force but also the main dividing rift between the two major communities of the land. Members of JULVERNE have played or will play in UNIVERS ZERO , PRESENT , AKSAK MABOUL , X-LEGGED SALLY , COS , CRO-MAGNON , etc.. The group started as a bunch of music classical students wanting to reinvent the classical chamber orchestra by adding a bit of a rock twist although this will remain very discreet. But on the mood spectrum I would place them on the opposite scale of Univers Zero, the first being the extra joyful joie de vivre as opposed to the dark and lugubrious underworld of UZ. The first album actually was the oeuvre of Pierre Coulon , but the next two albums were also quite interesting as En Ballade stands a bit apart from the rest of their discography often digressing into jazzier terrain and some vocals. They recorded a last album in 86, and nothing (apart from a compilation album in 92) was heard of them until the turn of the century when they reconvened for another album celebrating the renovation of a spectacular building in Brussels that has remained open to public for exactly four hours before being closed for obscene bas-relief. Did you say Belgian surrealism? .

: : : Hugues Chantraine, BELGIUM : : :

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AmballadeAmballade
Import
Imports 2009
Audio CD$57.00 (used)
CoulonneuxCoulonneux
Import
Imports 2009
Audio CD$58.12
Ne Parlons Pas De MahleurNe Parlons Pas De Mahleur
Import
Imports 2009
Audio CD$58.62
NeufNeuf
Import
Imports 2009
Audio CD$58.62
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JULVERNE discography


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

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

3.96 | 14 ratings
Coulonneux
1979
3.39 | 12 ratings
neuf
1980
3.16 | 12 ratings
Emballade
1983
4.00 | 8 ratings
Ne Parlons Pas De Mahleur
1986
3.13 | 4 ratings
Le Pavillon Des Passions Humaines
2000

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

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

3.17 | 4 ratings
Le Retour Du Captain Nemo
1992

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

JULVERNE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
  neuf by JULVERNE album cover Studio Album, 1980
3.39 | 12 ratings

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neuf
Julverne RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

3 stars Julverne recorded soon a second album, ''A neuf'' at Studio Caramelle with an expanded 10-piece line-up.No Jean Coulon, Richard Rousselet, Anne Denis or Michel Dayez around, instead Pierre Coulon would welcome Michel Berckmans of Univers zro and Art Zoyd fame on bassoon, Cos' pianist Charles Loos, bassist Jose Bedeur, Baudouin Dehaye on vocals, Philippe Duret on clarinet and Jean-Francois Lacroix on sax.A change of label also occured with Julverne producing their second album on the newly established Crammed label of Cos and Aksak Maboul's composer and leader Marc Hollander.This work came out in 1980.

Again the style of Julverne was an eerie and ethereal Chamber Rock with dominant wind instruments and lots of Classical piano lines, offering music that can be dramatic and positive at the same time.The absence of rock instruments may cause some confusion to the average fan of Progressive Rock or even R.I.O., but the impressive level of individual performances and the intricate compositions are rewarding for fans of Classical and even Fusion music.Julverne's new album has tons of haunting moments with clarinets and saxes in evidence next to melancholic violins and cellos.However there are also plenty of dreamy instrumental parts like performed by a small orchestra, mainly led by elegant flutes and smooth piano.At times the atonal music flirts even with the Avant-Garde fields, but on the whole the pieces performed have a strong 19th century vibe akin to UNIVERS ZERO and ART ZOYD's works.The musicianship is rich and fairly complex as expected, but again some more depth into a slighty rockier approach possibly would have made ''A neuf'' a bit better.

A pure highlight for lovers of Classical Music and Chamber Rock in the vein of UNIVERS ZERO and AFTER CRYING as well as R.I.O. fanatics.But this should be given also a small chance by some more people due to the excellence and professionalism of this ensemble.Warmly recommended.

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 Coulonneux by JULVERNE album cover Studio Album, 1979
3.96 | 14 ratings

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Coulonneux
Julverne RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Zeuhl Glikowski II

4 stars fabulous, different, "Coulonneux" the debut album of JULVERNE it's one of the lost jewels of the 70's, a very soft RIO, very different to Samla Mammas Manna, Henry Cow or Art Zoyd, a little bit of Opus Avantra maybe. 10 instrumental songs, none of them hard or speed, only quiet and soft songs. the RIO scene in Europe in the last years of the 70's decade, it's very wide, and we can find a lot of albums very similar or very differents for each other. if you're a hugh fan of the classic bands of RIO, you can't miss the oportunity to listen this wonderful album. it's brilliant, one of the better works in the genre. i'm listening to ths album (for the first time in my life) right now, and i had to say, that i already love it.

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 Le Pavillon Des Passions Humaines by JULVERNE album cover Studio Album, 2000
3.13 | 4 ratings

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Le Pavillon Des Passions Humaines
Julverne RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Sean Trane
Special Collaborator Prog Folk

3 stars After more than a decade silence , this seminal and centrepiece of Belgian Chamber Progrssive Music came back to life and dedicated this album to an early 20th-century building a bit forgotten (and slightly abandonned) devoted to Human Passions (of which if you look at the artwork is a bas-relief , lust and lush abandon are definitely among the passions described). Unfortunately , this building is to remain closed for sometime more as it stands next to Brussels Grand Mosque and you guessed it , this might create some controversy, that no one wants.

However , even after a ten years hiatus, nothing new under the Julverne sun: still the same chamber prog music , hovering around classical quintets and slighly more modern contemporary music. Entirely acoustic , and driven by Jeannot Gillis and other original members Claudine Steenackers , and Pierre Coulon (the historical leader) but joined by UNIVERS ZERO members Michel Berckmans and Dirk Descheemaker, this is typical Julverne record that will fit quite nicely alongside their previous works. Among the few surprises are a Michel Jonasz song adatation , the famopus Puccini Tosca theme and a moody Sieczinski 1939-written Vienna waltz composed on the somber mood from Andreas Schnberg as the city was under the Anschluss. I am not saying it , Jeannot Gillis is in the booklet.

Still , for progheads , the interest will be limited as we are really more into Les Musiques Nouvelles than into good ol' prog rock!

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 Le Retour Du Captain Nemo by JULVERNE album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1992
3.17 | 4 ratings

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Le Retour Du Captain Nemo
Julverne RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Sean Trane
Special Collaborator Prog Folk

3 stars This album is a compilation of tracks taken from three of their four albums, excluding Emballade (which had created controversy amongst their fans) but incuding the following album 86's Ne Parlons Pas De Malheur (yet to be included in the ProgArchives as I write this review).

If you are not familiar with Julvene (taking their name from Sci-Fi father Jules Vernes) , this CD is ideal for an introduction to the band's unique chamber music. I am a afraid the Chamber Rock term would be misused here as there is no rock elements in Julverne but if they are associated in the Archives , it would be because of the many links to other Belgian prog bands most notably Cos and Univers Zero. Michel Berckmans (U Z and Von Zamla ) Deschemaeker (future UZ) and Loos (Cos and Belgian Jazz rock scene ) are among the local stars in the line-up of all four albums. The music developped here is also very much comparable to Univers Zero (especially Ceux Du Dehors) and the more recent Present albums. Please note that two of the tracks from Les Coulonneux have been re-recorded for this occasion. The track selection is relatively well spread out over the three albums featured and can be considered as faithful as possible to represent all aspect of the group bar the afore-mentioned Emballade album.

As I said above , there are no rock elements in Julverne , so please approach this group carefully.

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 Emballade by JULVERNE album cover Studio Album, 1983
3.16 | 12 ratings

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Emballade
Julverne RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Sean Trane
Special Collaborator Prog Folk

3 stars Julverne is another one of these bands that belong to the Progressive Chamber Rock scene from this incredibly vivid Belgian scene. The japanese CD reissue actually incuded a Pete Frame-like family tree of this scene that includes Univers Zero , Cos , Present , X- legged Sally , Aksak Maboul , Present , Arkham , Pazop, Present and some more (most of these bands are included elsewhere in the Archives.

This third (and second last) album is actually quite different to the others . They received a lot of heat from their followers from having done such a daring project that brings you back from the start of the 20th century until the 30's. Actually this album is really almost classical music with slight jazz leanings and cabaret music (a bit like Mistinguette at the Moulin Rouge) but in terms of prog rock music , there is little to hear. Do not get me wrong a good deal of progheads will find many qualities to this album but this is really ouside the scope of the Archives.

All tracks are covers/reprises from all sorts of early century composers inckluding Scott Joplin and Duke Ellington , and some tango kings. The acoustic strings ensemble (see the picture on the opening Julverne page) is quite fun if you enjoy that type of music , but I doubt this will spin more than 4 or 5 times in your deck if you are to invest in this otherwise superb Art-Nouveau artwork sleeve impeccably reproduced by Beatball records. To me, as I mentioned in the first paragraph , the family tree was certainly the most interesting part of this release.

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