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Nuit Caline a la Villa mon Reve picture
Nuit Caline a la Villa mon Reve biography
Nuit Câline à la Villa Mon Rêve is one of these projects that simply happen and leave their marks. A group of Belgian musicians around guitarist/cellist Michel Dayez (consisting of Dayez, Eric Chale, Jeannot Gillis and Michel Moers) thought it would be nice to create a work of music that involved musicians from classical, folk and chanson background. The idea was to create a musical mix of those genres, that covered different moods and was more sophisticated than the typical verse-chorus-bridge structure. The four were part of a movement that tried to set up what they called a "musician syndicate for alternative music", which is still in existence under the name "Les Lundis d'Hortense". Through this movement, they had connections to various musicians like Charles Loos, Denis van Hecke and Alexandre Furnelle and drummer/percussionist Pierre Narcisse.

In July 1977 the group consisted of 13 people in total, and they recorded a set of very well composed tracks, according to Michel Moers with "no money and too many efforts". The main theme was "not love, many people already did, and still do that, very well". Instead, the focus was on the feelings those involved had about themselves and the world around them - but in a 'poetic' and humorous way. Where some thought that the result was influenced by smoking marijuana, the band indicates that they did not need that. Regardless, the songs deal with working in a boring office ('Sauve qui peut, tout va bien dans nos bureaux'), going to the dentist, standing in the Belgian rain or simply facing the difficulty of making decisions.
The music is an intricate mixture of the styles already mentioned - hints of Brel, but also of Julverne, which' line up included a number of the Nuit Câline members. In many places, the music is very folk like, with violins, acoustic guitars and choruses, at other times the instrumental parts clearly show influences of the jazz that later took the upper hand in Les Lundis d'Hortense.

With the recordings done, the album needed to be mixed in order to be able to release it. This was done illegally, in a studio of national radio and on equipment that was not intended for this purpose. The result is the album we have now, and which the band considers of too poor sound quality to re-release on CD. Michel Moers indicated in his input for this short biography that although the ideas of the band were nice, their playing did not do full justice to them.

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3.53 | 9 ratings
Juillet 1977

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 Juillet 1977 by NUIT CALINE A LA VILLA MON REVE album cover Studio Album, 1977
3.53 | 9 ratings

Juillet 1977
Nuit Caline a la Villa mon Reve Prog Folk

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars Late-70's Belgian ensemble, its idea was captured by guitarist and cellist Michel Dayez, who had the vision to combine elements from different music styles in a single disc.For this reason he needed musicians with a wide background, Nuit Calline A La Villa Mon Reve ended up to be a company of more than 10 musicians: Cos' and Abraxis' Charles Loos on piano, Denis Van Hecke on cello (linked to bands like Cos and Confluence), Alex Furnelle on bass, Jeannot Gillis on trumpet, viola and tuba, Jean-Paul Laurent and Pierre Coulon on flute, Pierre Narcisse on percussion, Ilona Chale and Christophe Vinck on vocals, Eric Chale and Michel Moers on guitars.With an unknown place of recording the album ''Juillet 1977'' was released in 1977 on IBC.

Very weird and unique album indeed, ''Juillet 1977'' contains strong elements from Francophone Folk, Rock and Jazz, at least during the instrumental parts, because the lyrical parts have something of a typical French Singer/Songwriter approach, featuring expressive male and female vocals.The music is pretty complex with a definite R.I.O. background, as the strings and acoustic instruments dominate the album, based on a jazzy executional freedom and the dreamy Folk arrangements.Violin and guitar are the most prominent instruments and with the addition of jazzy elements the style comes often close to a MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA sound.Cello and viola along with the acoustic guitars come next.Flute and electric guitars are used only sporadically, though the album features an omnipresent rhythm section.''Juillet 1977'' sounds often pretty chaotic and abstract, the listener will find a hard time to digest the polyphonic harmonies, the string scratches and the ethereal rural tunes, but several listenings will turn out to be pretty rewarding.Despite the largely acoustic armour this work offers complex musicianship with changing climates and sources of inspiration, going from Jazz to Folk to Classical Music, reminiscent sometimes of the Quebec Prog scene.The mood is also uneven, there is some dreamy singing parts with an elegant atmosphere, which often switch to dense acoustic Prog Rock with series of strings, guitar and piano battles and solos.Not very consistent stuff, but the instrumental variety is something to admire.

Of course the band was short-lived, but this collaboration led to many musicians meet up again in Julverne: Denis Van Hecke, Jean-Paul Laurent, Jeannot Gillis and Pierre Coulon all played with the band.Unfortunately Van Hecke passed away in 2012.Pierre Narcisse also suffered a stroke and retired from music around 2007.

Pretty genuine mix of Folk Rock, R.I.O. and Jazz.Not music for eveyone and definitely a demanding grower.Recommended though, especially if you like slightly abstract prog listenings.

 Juillet 1977 by NUIT CALINE A LA VILLA MON REVE album cover Studio Album, 1977
3.53 | 9 ratings

Juillet 1977
Nuit Caline a la Villa mon Reve Prog Folk

Review by Sean Trane
Special Collaborator Prog Folk

4 stars In some strange way, this album turns out be a first step leading to the formation of Julverne via the album Les Couloneux, which will become the first album of that formation. But with this album, we are musically far from the classical music of Julverne: what we have here is a delicate mix of jazz, folk and chanson française, giving plenty of instrumental space for everyone to expand and enjoy themselves. While not an absolute expert I believe this album was the first recording experience for many of the musicians in this line-up, Furnelle, both Ilona and Eric Chale, Narcisse et Gillis amongst others. Released on small label, Best Seller (those Belgians and their surrealism ;-) where Cos was also releasing their albums, you will also find Charles Loos which collaborated on both projects. Graced with a very sober artwork, most of the tracks are penned by guitarist Michel Moers and Jeannot Gillis on violin and wind instruments.

Starting with the typical "Podferdeke, Quell Drache!!" (Fùck, what a downpour) where jazz and folk are simply collaborating to make an exquisite delicate ambiance, interrupted by a short sung passage disturbing the song like a sudden thunderstorm. We find the same musical great climates on the shorter Chaleur D'Eté, with Furnelle showing (even strutting) his bass. The funky-folk-jazz Coeurs En Morceaux again plays in the Ponty realm. The lengthy 10-min+ Mardi 14h30 is a great fusion with Gillis's violin exploding in the first part before letting Moers and Narcisse (on vibes) into a dissonant duet and some segueing into a vastly different climate where the singing is approximate (even if Ilona Chale shows promises) at first , before going into a folk serenade often reminding some Québecois prog folk of that era.

The flipside starts on the lyrically despairing La Route where Gillis' trombone Moers' electric guitars dominate the great music while the singing the singing is reminiscent of later Pierre Rapsaet (ex Jenghis Khan and Lorelie) and a Quebecois way of singing like Serge Fiori (Harmonium). This first track is very much reminiscent of Quebecois group Brèche (even if this is prior to that group's sole album), in no small part due to the dominant trombone. One of the most important jazz organization is Belgium is called Les Lundis D' Hortense and the instrumental coming up next is a fitting track, being very close to some of Ponty's best works of the same era. La Princesse Est Salariée again reminds me of the Quebec Prog Folk of the era (even if the singing accent has nothing to do with Québec), but it is a vicious criticism of the modern day social organization. This same theme returns Sauve Qui Peut (where obviously the worker has as much interest in his job as you and I, violin and Rhodes dominating this track. Contravention borders on the dissonant jazz where Narcisse's vibes bring a bit of an escape along with the extremely fantasy lyrics, but the track ends up faster and more conventional than it started. The closing track relates the bordello to a jail, with Gillis's violin (again close to Ponty) creates a great ambiance, even if the track hesitates between jazz and folk, this time sounding like another Quebecois group, Conventum.

Gillis and Coulon will go on to form Julverne via their Couloneux album. In the meantime this is a rare (but not necessarily expensive) vinyl, that unfortunately will not likely to get a Cd reissue anytime soon. But I don't believe you should have that much trouble finding it should you be interested in investigating. Because it is definitely worth a listen.

Thanks to Angelo for the artist addition.

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