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Vox Nostra - Vox Populi CD (album) cover


Vox Nostra


Eclectic Prog

3.00 | 1 ratings

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3 stars This very interesting band is actually mostly a one-person project headed by Pierre Minvielle who composes music that focuses on orchestration and vocal intricacies. Through the years of it's existence, the project has worked with vocal soloists and choirs, but there are also times when everything is performed by Pierre alone. Whatever the focus for the album, you can bet that you will get some very interesting harmonies and orchestrations.

On the EP "Vox Populi", you get nearly a half hour of lovely compositions where Minvielle performs all instruments and most of the vocals except for the tenor harmonics performed by Eric Poilpot. The music is a dynamic blend of chamber- style music which is surprisingly diverse and dynamic. Minvielle is not the best vocalist, but that is hardly noticeable as the orchestration is top notch.

Most of the music is surprisingly lush and layered, but it's not all that way as in the case of "Sur les Pavés" which utilizes more of a spoken word style at first, but ends up with a nice guitar solo with a heavier popular style. But while tracks like "Introit" and "Plus Loin" are organized to be lovely arrangements, in contrast, "Une feuille est tombée" is more dissonant and more like a baroque-avant style, at least until it gets to the last few minutes when the guitar joins in to close off the track. To end the album, things venture heavily into rock territory with "Ils ont choisi", a heavy and chunky guitar riff- driven number that churns away building up for a dramatic and dark sense of style.

While Poilpot's harmonizations with his tenor vocals are quite good, Minvielle is much harsher and harder to listen to, so that can contradict the feeling at times, while on the final two tracks, it actually fits with the music much better. But I wish he would have picked another vocalist other than himself to help carry the dynamics better. While he often utilizes more singers on his albums, this time he chooses to manipulate vocals to create the sections that have choral/choir style singing, which is always, in this case, carried out in wordless vocalization.

I am actually intrigued by this EP as well as some of the projects other albums. While the instrumentation is excellent, and so is the guest vocals and the manipulated vocals, Minvielle's vocals end up being distracting at times and end up hurting the overall album, which would have easily hit a 4-star rating. I can't help but think that it might have been better without his own vocals, either with or without another singer or two. However, the EP is still good enough to check out even just for the diversity of the music and the great orchestration.

TCat | 3/5 |


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