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ZANOV

Progressive Electronic • France


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Zanov biography
Less known french artist specialised in expansive space-y, proggy synthscapes (next to Flamend Dialis, Heldon, Philippe Besombes) Pierre Zalkazanov published three major albums under the name ZANOV between 1976 to 1983. His long peacefully, processual (and sometimes experimental) electronic pieces represent the french answer to the legendary Berlin Kosmische scene.

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ZANOV discography


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

4.40 | 23 ratings
Green Ray
1976
3.67 | 11 ratings
Moebius 256 301
1977
4.63 | 10 ratings
In Course of Time
1983

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ZANOV Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 In Course of Time by ZANOV album cover Studio Album, 1983
4.63 | 10 ratings

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In Course of Time
Zanov Progressive Electronic

Review by Progfan97402

5 stars Unbelievable! About a five year gap since the last album, Moebius, and you should expect a drastic change in style, substance, and technology (it was now the 1980s). Not at all, it's as if this was recorded in 1978, and for all I know it was actually recorded then, but never released until 1982, when a small Canadian label issued it, and then in 1983 a French label (probably due to French record stores stocking in the import section and was needing of a domestic release). If it was recorded in 1978 as I suspect, then I'm certain Polydor rejected this album. If it was actually recorded in 1982, then I'm really amazed how Zanov didn't even pay the littlest attention to the musical changes of the 1980s. But I have nothing solid to go by, just amazed to hear a 1980s album from a '70s artist still sound very '70s. That same '70s cosmic spacy electronic sci-fi vibe I come to love of Green Ray (1976) and Moebius (1977). Same great use of analog synths. It seems to have a bit of a less mechanical feel than previous albums, but absolutely nothing lost of the substance. If parts of "Sky Energy" sounds a tad familiar, well, Pierre Zalkazanov (that's Zanov's actual name) actually incorporated parts of "Plenitude" off Moebius in this piece. He's been often called the French Klaus Schulze, certainly I notice some elements of that but he explores realms that Schulze often didn't, and I couldn't mistake this for a Schulze album. Zanov's album are really criminally overlooked by electronic aficionados. In fact I only knew one person who heard of Zanov. Lovers of '70s electronic music should not be scared of when this album was released, this is totally essential, as is the previous two!

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 Moebius 256 301 by ZANOV album cover Studio Album, 1977
3.67 | 11 ratings

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Moebius 256 301
Zanov Progressive Electronic

Review by Progfan97402

5 stars Album number two from Pierre Zalkazanov. Here he takes perhaps a bit more melodic and rhythmic approach than he did with Green Ray, but still retains all that wonderful '70s cosmic trippiness that I came to love of Green Ray. "Moebius 256", "Moebis 301" and "Enymga" are all rather short and shows a more melodic approach, but with that irresistible '70s vibe going for it. "Pentitude" and "An Zero" are lengthier pieces, a lot of it showing a more rhythmic approach as he uses sequencers here. The back cover shows Zanov in a pose very similar to the back cover of Jean Michel Jarre's Oxygene, which probably isn't too surprising, given Jarre was a contemporary and Oxygene did come out in France towards the end of 1976, many months before its international release in the summer of 1977. Zanov is one of those electronic musicians who have fallen through the cracks. While I feel Green Ray is a better album overall, this is still excellent and I recommend it to lovers of '70s electronic music.

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 Green Ray by ZANOV album cover Studio Album, 1976
4.40 | 23 ratings

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Green Ray
Zanov Progressive Electronic

Review by Progfan97402

5 stars It's funny the amount of electronic acts that went past my radar scope for all these years. Case in point: Pierre Zalkazanov, French electronic musician who goes by the name of Zanov. It blows me away how this was never reissued on CD, because this stuff simply blew me away. and ever be glad I own a turntable and able to play LPs, because it's stuff like this, along with Patrick Vian and the Swedish duo Anna Själv Tredje, that you're only able to get on vinyl, and not easy to come by. 1976's Green Ray is Zanov's debut and it just simply blows me away. He uses the ARP 2600 and EMS VCS-3 with a nice spacy '70s feel to go with it. He's been frequently compared with Jarre, Schulze, and TD, but really has his own approach. Title track features some nice themes and pulsing synths, "Machine Desperation", unsurprisingly, has a more mechanical feel to it, while "Running Beyond a Dream" at times sounds a bit like a more mechanical Tim Blake. I frequently hear synth effects that are almost Blake-like. This cut is packed with really trippy synth effects. Perhaps the synth timbres might seem a bit dated for many listeners and that's why his music is now completely forgotten, but I love this stuff and 70s electronic music buffs should seek out his LPs.

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 Green Ray by ZANOV album cover Studio Album, 1976
4.40 | 23 ratings

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Green Ray
Zanov Progressive Electronic

Review by Rocketboy

4 stars Think of Zanov (and particularly here on Green Ray) as the dark counter-earth twin of Jean- Michel Jarre. If Jarre is poppy, impressionistic, romantic, melodic and accessible, then Zanov is moody, expressive, gothic, atonal and thoroughly uncompromising. His expansive soundscapes reverberate with the horrors of mechanization, as clanking robotic percussion and massive synthetic drones engulf the listener in waves of floating electrons. Here one is exiled to the isolation tank of pure electronic sound devoid of either rhythm or harmony. The title track "Green Ray" and "Machine Desperation" are elegiac in their stately movement toward harmonic deprivation. And the side long track "Running beyond a Dream" even rivals Klaus Schulze's sense of the cosmic, if not his command of the possibilities of the synthesizer itself. For fans of hardcore sound synthesis.

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 Green Ray by ZANOV album cover Studio Album, 1976
4.40 | 23 ratings

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Green Ray
Zanov Progressive Electronic

Review by philippe
Special Collaborator Content Development & Krautrock Team

5 stars Green Ray is an exceptional and top class kosmische electronic album in the vein of the most vibrating synthesized soundscapes written by Klaus Schulze during his late 70's classic era (Moondown, Mirage, Body Love...) Zanov is an electronic artist and keyboarder from France. With Didier Bocquet he represents the french answer to seventies German kosmsiche music (Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze, Adelbert Von Deyen, Robert Schroeder...) Green Ray is without any doubts the most achieved work from Zanov. The alchemic, looped and slow moving opening theme (Green Ray) is almost more amazing than spacey, proto-new agey stuffs from Schulze. With the help of analog synthesizers and sound effects this composition delivers a mesmeric, dense and emulating electronic piece that physically transports you in deep astral space. The sequenced hypno-minimal patterns are sustained by catchy, sci-fi epic melodies. It also reminds me Tim Blake's extended synthscapes in Crystal Machine. The second piece Machine Desperation is a more moody / claustrophobic electronic soundscape featuring ultimately dark hypno synth pulsations and haunted, glacial, otherworldy sounds. This fascinating composition is among my favourites from Zanov and from vintage space synthesized analog music in general. Green Ray is constantly brilliant and impressive. Among the very best 70's kosmische electronic albums from France with Eclipse (Didier Bocquet), Prophecy (Bernard Xolotl) and a few others.

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 Moebius 256 301 by ZANOV album cover Studio Album, 1977
3.67 | 11 ratings

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Moebius 256 301
Zanov Progressive Electronic

Review by philippe
Special Collaborator Content Development & Krautrock Team

3 stars Moebius is a fascinating sci-fi spacey electronic album from the french keyboarder Pierre Zalkazanov. Next to Didier Bocquet and to Bernad Xolotl the music of Zanov figures as a convincing reply to German-ish analog synth essays (Klaus Schulze and others). The instrumentation is pretty luminous, featuring a lot of eerie sounds and burgeoning cosmic waves taken from vintage keyboards. The first Zanov called Green Gray represents the pinacle of the kosmsiche synth genre. Moebius is a more modest and academic despite that it includes really elaborate synth epics. The long title piece is the less interesting piece of the album. It's made of passable synthezised orchestrations with no challenging ideas. Plénitude and An Zéro are highly achieved and original compositions alternating Schulze-like spacey meditative sounds and very effective, alchemical, haunted textures in a very dark vibe. The last minutes of Plenitude are impressively sonic and cinematic. An Zero is a moody atmospheric piece for molecular projections, monotonous synth chords and moving electronic arppegios. This album deserves a listening and remains a must have for fans of Klaus Schulze late 70's mellow surrounding sounds.

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Thanks to philippe Blache for the artist addition.

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