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Miriodor - Signal 9 CD (album) cover





3.75 | 57 ratings

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3 stars Much Quirk, Less Musical.

The most recent album by Miriodor, Signal 9, ramps up the quirk factor, but in the process loses some of the musicality that made albums like Avanti so good. There are more stops and starts, and the transitions often seem too quick, not fully thought out. Simply put, the music flows less well on this album. This is not to say that there isn't some great music here - there is. The opening track, Venin, provides a good start, and the high quirk level (or, as some reviewers call it, 'staccato' approach) on the second track ('Peinture Dans Le Coin') to a large extent constitutes its charm and musicality. But not all the tunes are so compelling, and this is generally not an album one will want to listen to all the way through very often. A lot of the tunes are shorter and less developed, snippets really, and so have less musical heft, and the contrast between tracks can be jarring. In general, in addition to the first two tracks, I like the longer ones here. 'Portrait-robot' (in English "Identikit", or reconstructed portrait) is the best track - starts off really heavy and crunchy, turns dark and quieter in the middle, then becomes very melodic with a baroque-like bass pattern through to its ending. That one is very musical. The last two minutes of 'Chapelle Lunaire' are also great, very musical, but the first four minutes that one must wade through to get there leave me flat. 'Secret Passage' contains some great parts too (wonderful last 3.5 minutes!), but again, not the whole thing, and some parts simply drag. The long closing track, 'Le Ventriloque Et Le Perroquet' (The Ventriloquist and the Parrot) is up there among the better tunes here too, fairly inventive with strange vocal effects and patterns, some nice minor-key fairground chord progressions, and some great dissonant interlocking guitar lines, although I find the telephone ring that accompanies the main quirky theme annoying. Indeed, many parts of this album seem intended to grate for the purpose of waking you up, or something. This would be fine if there were a good reasons to be so woken, but I find there are not enough musical sections to justify the non-musical parts. So, a mixed bag with some good music, but I would recommend other Miriodor albums before this one. I give this 6.9 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, which translates to (mid) 3 PA stars.

Walkscore | 3/5 |


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