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Jazz Rock/Fusion • France

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L' Oeil Du Sourd picture
L' Oeil Du Sourd biography
French jazz-rock psychedelic band was founded in 2004 in Rennes, Bretagne. At the core of the group, there are three high school buddies, Youenn Migaud (guitar), Herve Launay (sax) and Antoine Tharreau (keyboards) who, after some years of diverse musical experiences, together or separately, decided to form L'OEIL DU SOURD (EYE OF THE DEAF). They were joined in 2007 by drummer Cedric Lucas shortly thereafter by Charlotte Mérand (electric violin) and Mathilde Clavier (vocals and clarinet).

They mixed rock energy with jazz sax sound and structural freedom. If certain parts, often shorter, can claim more or less of jazz, the longest lead us in a mighty maze in which one loses some its bearings. The music includes saxophone, drums, keyboards, guitar, violin, clarinet and vocals and is a sound of prog rock jazz fusion of the 70's (without being that music in reality). This touch is brought by including all sounds of vintage keyboards. Classically trained Matilda Clavier distils a song lyric from the most original opera and vocal experiments. All this is caused by tremendous energy, a surprising strength of conviction that is contagious and contaminating (perhaps it is the origin of their name out) with an amazing mix sounds, and vintage and electronic. Perhaps we could situate this group unclassifiable - somewhere near Rock in Opposition, in a niche of progressive jazz and experimental avant-garde.

Some line up changes happened: near Migaud, Launay and Clavier from the early line up, there are two new members, Julia Robin (bass) and Tony Peoc'h (drums). Their first album ''Un?'' was released in 2009 (self production). - Slava (Snobb)

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L' OEIL DU SOURD discography

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4.06 | 12 ratings

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Showing last 10 reviews only
 Un? by OEIL DU SOURD, L' album cover Studio Album, 2009
4.06 | 12 ratings

L' Oeil Du Sourd Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars 4.5 stars. My experience with this album reminded me of grade four when my teacher came up to me from behind and hit me on the side of the head with her book. Did not see that one coming! This is a six piece band out of France and this 2009 album is their sole release so far. Besides the usual instruments we get violin, clarinet, sax, flute and mellotron. A Jazz album with a lot of avant goodness. The singer who's name is Mathilde also plays clarinet and flute but man she is classically trained vocally and what a show she puts on.

"Ods" is my favourite and it's a 14 1/2 minute opener. Sounds like a soundtrack to a James Bond movie early on with the sax, vocal melodies and menacing bass lines. It turns louder after a minute. Great sound here! Organ as well in this powerful and engaging section. It turns darker 4 1/2 minutes in but also more intense as the vocal melodies stop. They're back at 6 1/2 minutes as we get guitar and lots of atmosphere. So good! Check out her vocals starting before 9 minutes. Synths lead before 11 1/2 minutes as the vocals stop. Violin 12 minutes and horns late to end it.

"AC" opens with flute and mellotron as vocal melodies join in after a minute. Drums and sax also help out and organ before 3 minutes as she starts singing words. She's getting a little insane here at 4 1/2 minutes then sax takes over with mellotron. Violin's turn around 6 minutes. "Kudjat(Tronc)" is a bouncy, uptempo horn led piece. Jazzy stuff. Flute before a minute then mellotron a minute later to end it. "Deux Trains Valent Mieux Qu'un "Tu L'auras"" has a catchy beat with lots of bass sounds as the violin comes in. It settles back as vocal melodies and sax come in over the bass and drums. Organ and guitar will also join in as she sings. Sax is back leading as the vocals step aside until they return with the organ after 8 1/2 minutes.

"We Are Knights Who Say Ni!" has these disturbed vocals to start before a keyboard melody takes over as the vocals stop and sax joins in. I like when the sax stops and we get that keyboard melody with bass. Sax is back as contrasts continue. Crazy vocals after 5 minutes along with mellotron and violin. "Here I Am J(H)" is led early by spoken male words, horns and violin. Drums follow and it all speeds up after a minute. A change 3 minutes in as it turns intense with theatrical vocals bringing "Cottonwood Hill" to mind, yes that nuts! A cool instrumental section starts before 6 minutes with guitar, drums and keyboards leading. A calm before 9 minutes with piano and drums as it builds. Another calm before 11 minutes and check out the vocal melodies, mellotron atmosphere and picked guitar late.

"Kudjat(Cime)" ends it as we get this almost 10 minute instrumental and it's a very good one. Bass and drums lead early and it's urgent sounding as horns and more join in. Organ to the fore as well, just love the sound of this one. Man this is such an amazing record with those outlandish vocals and jazzy sound. I'm surprised they haven't followed it up yet as it's coming up 10 years since this was released.

 Un? by OEIL DU SOURD, L' album cover Studio Album, 2009
4.06 | 12 ratings

L' Oeil Du Sourd Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by avestin
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Well this one is odd. Not so much the music (at least not for me, although I'm sure some will find it weird or just peculiar), but the song titles, the artwork, the band's name (The Eye Of The Deaf). But do not let that deter you. Inside waits an intriguing, beautiful and special sounding experience.

Formed in 2004 in Rennes, Bretagne in the north of France as a quartet of guitar, drums, saxophone and keyboards, the lineup got expanded with the addition of a violonist and vocalist (chanting/vocalization would be a more appropriate description). In 2009 they self-released their first album, Un?.

Long multi-part compositions, filled with heavy sounding guitars, enchanting keyboards and powerful drumming (with a variety of other instruments), fronted by saxophone and voices (female mostly), the music is otherworldly in a way, mixing styles together and a generous amount of experimentation with sounds and atmosphere. At times very cool sounding, while at others demented and crazy (the opener Ods is a fine example of these extremes in their music), their music is eclectic in nature and consists of jazz, psychedelic rock, electronic manipulations and even zeuhl (listen to the bass playing and chanting in Ods and in Here I Am J(H) for example). Their music sounds passionate, if only for the female vocalization by Mathilde Clavier (I think), and the instruments that accompanies her, be it the violin on A.C or the saxophone in Ods. But passion and zeal, while prevalent here, are part of the sound. Haunting vibes are abundant and playing around a theme in a jam-like manner seems to be something they like doing. It's not done off-hand, though. Thought is put into it with regards to how each instrument is contributing to the ornamentation of the pattern being played repetitively, whether it's the guitar, violin, keyboards or sax. A sense of mystery is seeping through in the longer tracks, Ods, Deux Trains?, Here I am J (h), driven by these elements mentioned in a hypnosis-inducing fashion. The tension increases as the music proceeds, reaching higher peaks (Deux Trains) and then even changing direction altogether (Ods, Deux Trains).

This album is quite a trip. A dynamic affair, it covers a wide range of sonic peaks and valleys, high-energy segments and cooler, calmer grounds. Its eclectic nature, mixture of jazz-rock with psychedelic-rock and zeuhl is well done, appealing and leaves me exhausted (in a good way) at the end. Being a first album, they may very well refine their sound, and remove the more rough parts of their music (though I can't personally find fault in that) and go for a more unified and cleaner sound. In spite of this, I find this work charming and to my taste, very satisfying. This band and album are a great discovery for me and I look forward to more from them.

Thanks to easy money for the artist addition. and to NotAProghead for the last updates

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