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Et Cetera - Et Cetera CD (album) cover


Et Cetera


Eclectic Prog

4.11 | 139 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Et Cetera can fairly be called a menagerie, a zoo of influences. It's like being bustled through a series of crazy animal exhibits at a claustrophobic amusement park. It's stunning at times, and the whole thing is admirably absurd, making an occasional visit quite enjoyable.

Eclecticism between songs is de rigueur in progressive rock. Thus, on Et Cetera, songs like "La Musique Tourne" ("The Music Turns," according to Google Translate) and "Apostrophe" are built around relatively accessible rock passages, while "Entre Chien Et Loup" ("Between Dog and Wolf"), with its acoustic guitar and flutes, is more pastoral. But Et Cetera is marked by eclecticism within songs as well. For instance, "Éclaircie" ("Rift") stars off with a vaguely Crimsonian intro. It then alternates between analog synth-based parts some of which remind me of a video-game arcade, and Gentle-Giant-like vocal sections similar to those on "La Musique Tourne." There's also bassline that sounds like "Kings and Queens" by pre-Halsam Renaissance.

But the influences seem to work both ways on Et Cetera, which, its credits note, was recorded in August 1976. The rhythmic vocals, such as on "La Musique Tourne" and "Éclaircie," are akin to those on the Greaves/Blegvad/Herman album Kew. Rhone. , which was recorded a few months later. That intro on "Éclaircie" that sounds like King Crimson actually sounds like Discipline-era Crimson (i.e., from the early 1980s). It's tough for me to gauge the influence of Et Cetera on other artists; certainly a mutual inspiration is likely in the case of Kew. Rhone.

Here's another example. The keyboards on "Newton Avait Raison" ("Newton had Reason") sound influenced by Rick Wakeman's work with Yes, but on closer inspection, they don't really sound like Wakeman in his first stint with that band (1971-1974) - - they sound like Wakeman after he re-joined Yes In 1977. My point is not that Et Cetera changed Rick Wakeman's sound, or that it was essential to the development of Discipline, Beat, and Three of a Perfect Pair. But it seems like Et Cetera is more than a reflection of pre-1976 progressive rock.

(For what it's worth, answering the question of influence may be rather simple. At least two online sources, which may not be mutually independent, claim that Et Cetera (the band) was self-avowedly following in Gentle Giant's footsteps. Nonetheless, I hear Focus and other bands too.)

Et Cetera is a fun stopover at an odd fair. Worth having if you can find an inexpensive copy or download (I got my download at emusic before they lost a ton of labels, including the distributor of Et Cetera).

patrickq | 3/5 |


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