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Chrysalide - La Chute CD (album) cover

LA CHUTE

Chrysalide

 

Prog Folk

2.57 | 6 ratings

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ClemofNazareth
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk Researcher
3 stars I believe I wrote once that I would never write a review about a French band again, and that I didn’t understand any of them. Turns out I’m partially a liar. None of them still make any sense for me to speak of, but here’s a review of one anyway.

Chrysalide appear to have been around in some fashion or another for ten years or so, but this album was recorded just last year as part of a trilogy that to-date has a beginning and an end but no middle – this and ‘Après la Chute’ were released on the band’s web site late last spring, and the third album (part two of the trilogy) has been in development since. The lyrics and concept date back to the mid-nineties, and tell a meandering tale of creation, fall, destruction, deliverance, and all the themes one would expect in an epic of humanity. There may be a religious theme here, but it’s hard to say unless you are a fluent speaker of the language (and maybe not even then – who knows?).

The vocals are consistent throughout, and even if they are a bit ponderous at times the overall sound is mostly pleasant. The instrumentation is mostly acoustic, guitars and bass, some cello, and percussion including tambourine. I personally would have pegged these guys a bit closer to post-rock with their abstract-leaning instrumentation and rather unstructured arrangements, but they can be compared in a broad sense to the understated, moody tone of Harmonium or maybe Emeraude, but with much more minimalism in instrumentation and mood.

If there’s a highlight here it’s probably the instrumental “La Ballade de l'Ange de la Mort”, not a true instrumental since there is some wordless vocal play throughout but mostly acoustic guitar and percussion that includes a strident and extended crescendo to evoke the mood of death that marks its theme.

Chrysalide are a bit of an acquired taste and not for everyone for sure. But if you are into moody French music with rambling anthropological themes you may enjoy them. I’m torn between two and three stars but since they do what they do with some sense of consistency and will likely appeal to some people on first listen who haven’t heard them before I think three stars is probably not too much. Recommended to curious prog and folk fans looking for something a bit different.

peace

ClemofNazareth | 3/5 |

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