Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography

ORION

Symphonic Prog • France


From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Orion picture
Orion biography
Founded in Meaux, France in 1975 - Disbanded in 1980 - Reformed in 2011

ORION is a strange case of Symphonic bands that escapes to the normal parameters of French groups, which normally follow the school of French Theatrical Symphonic like MONA LISA and ANGE or the more Art Rock oriented sound of bands like ATOLL

ORION combines both currents but add a clear Medieval Folk influence similar to GRYFON plus some melodic sounds from the softer side of CAMEL and KERRS PINK, that lead to their original inclusion to Prog Folk instead of Symphonic where they are now and belong.

The band was formed in the late 70's leaded by the flute player and vocalist Laurent Delenne who is responsible for the peculiar Folk influence, the keyboardist Janusz Tokarz and Franck Mamosa in the guitar.

In 1977 they release the single "Folie" that prepares the audience for the very good 1979 LP "La Nature Vit, L'Homme Lui, Critique..." which is a typical Symphonic product of the late 70's (What we call Neo Symphonic era) in any part of the world but strange for France.

Recently Musea has released "Critiques de La Nature Vit, L'homme Lui, Critique..." on DVD with two bonus tracks from the early 45 RPM of the band and a new art cover by Jean-Jaques Killian, so we are able to have their full produvctuion in one album.

There's little information about the band after the release of their LP, but despite their short history is a good option for the lovers of the most eclectic form of Symphonic that softens the classical and aggressive French Theatrical inspired in Genesis.

Iván Melgar-Morey - Perú

See also:
- HERE
- WiKi

ORION forum topics / tours, shows & news


ORION forum topics Create a topic now
ORION tours, shows & news Post an entries now

ORION Videos (YouTube and more)


Showing only random 3 | Search and add more videos to ORION

Buy ORION Music


Le SurvivantLe Survivant
Musea
$16.56
La Face VisibleLa Face Visible
MUE 2015
$16.55
$20.18 (used)
Mémoires Du TempsMémoires Du Temps
Musea 2013
$16.56
$24.51 (used)

More places to buy ORION music online Buy ORION & Prog Rock Digital Music online:

ORION discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

ORION top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.14 | 26 ratings
La Nature Vit, L'Homme Lui Critique...
1979
3.93 | 68 ratings
Mémoires Du Temps
2013
3.86 | 67 ratings
La Face Visible
2015
3.92 | 74 ratings
Le Survivant
2017
4.26 | 42 ratings
Orion 2.0: Virtual Human
2019

ORION Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

ORION Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

ORION Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

ORION Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

5.00 | 1 ratings
Folie
1977

ORION Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Orion 2.0: Virtual Human by ORION album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.26 | 42 ratings

BUY
Orion 2.0: Virtual Human
Orion Symphonic Prog

Review by goldenprog

5 stars I discovered this album on the progarchives.com website and it was a very good surprise. It's a little masterpiece on its own, it will be in my Top 10 of 2019. I really like this mix of prog, jazz and soul. The main themes addressed are digital life, the robotization of society, dehumanitaion and the gradual arrival of artificial intelligence with positive and negative sides. All the songs are inspired and the production is very careful. The first 3 tracks: Virtual Human, T.O.W.U. Run for Life and the latest Shagreen are particularly successful and deserve a score of 10/10. I find the Silicium piece interesting and of high quality but in my opinion it is a little too long. I highly recommend this album to all prog rock/jazz-rock fans and more! My overall score is 4.7/5

 Orion 2.0: Virtual Human by ORION album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.26 | 42 ratings

BUY
Orion 2.0: Virtual Human
Orion Symphonic Prog

Review by tgprog

5 stars Virtual Human is a very good album. I didn't know this group and I am pleasantly surprised by this discovery thanks to the Bandcamp site. It is possible on this site (orion11.bandcamp.com) to listen to the entire album, to see the lyrics and all the pictures of the CD and booklet. It made me want to buy it immediately. The sound is modern and the production is meticulous. The writing and compositions are of a high quality with very addictive melodies from the first listening. My favorite title is Shagreen. I really like Jérôme Nigou's way of singing and the dark atmosphere that emanates from this composition, the style is quite difficult to determine, I would say a kind of Prog jazz-rock. My overall score is 4.5 but to encourage the group to continue along this path I give them 5 stars. A highly recommended record. A very nice surprise, at least for me.

 Orion 2.0: Virtual Human by ORION album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.26 | 42 ratings

BUY
Orion 2.0: Virtual Human
Orion Symphonic Prog

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars A surprisingly refreshing release from a pair of French artists, Patrick Wyrembski and Janusz Tokarz, founders of the prog band, Orion, back in 1975, who'd left the prog scene for over 30 years. The new incarnation of the band has compositional and production input from Patrick and Janusz but a whole cadre of new musicians performing the songs. Whereas I lambasted their previous release, Le survivant, for its poor production and simplistic compositions, this album has definitely seen the band step up into the big leagues. The album is replete with strong melodies, tight and interestingly constructed songs, all indicative of artists who have a mature understanding on what's important in a song. Though stylistically they're still a little scattered, the sound production is very good.

1. "Virtual Human" (5:24) awesome opener sounding like a cross between an old Big Big Train song (The Difference Machine era) or one from 3RDEGREE, The Long Division album. Great singing voice (in English!) and lyrical delivery. (9.5/10)

2. "T.O.W.U." (3:48) mature, poppy, tightly constructed with great melodies, harmonies, instrumentals and vocals. Quite similar to the sound, feel, and style of New Jersey band, 3RDEGREE. Great song! (10/10)

3. "Run For Life" (5:54) piano-based, a little jazz-bluesy, amps up after a few. Nice melodies. Interesting and innovative that the music sparsens for the delicate "jazz" vocal section. (8.75/10)

4. "Le Nuage" (4:31) I hear a lot of NEMO and its guitarist, Jean-Pierre Louveton, in this music. (8/10)

5. "Silicon Cirkus" (6:00) Is this what Jeff "Skunk" Baxter-era STEELY DAN would sound like in the 21st Century? (8/10)

6. "Silicium" (7:45) a late 1970s pop smooth jazz/jazz fusion song in the vein of Hubert Laws, Larry Carlton, Lee Ritenour, Narada Michael Walden, and . Beautiful music with great melodies and harmonies, if a little simplistic. (12.5/15)

7. "Shagreen" (7:01) initially interesting and always pleasant, the song is diminished by its monotony and simplicity over the course of its entire seven minutes. Too bad! (12.5/15)

Total Time 40:29

Despite some great songwriting and delicious melodies, the collection of songs here fail to maintain either the strength of the openers as well as a stylistic consistency to which we can attach an identity.

Four stars; an excellent album of eclectically-inspired poppy progressive rock music.

 Orion 2.0: Virtual Human by ORION album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.26 | 42 ratings

BUY
Orion 2.0: Virtual Human
Orion Symphonic Prog

Review by cprog11200

5 stars I'm a big fan of the Orion band so obviously I bought this last opus as soon as it was released. I must admit that it is completely different from the previous albums but it is magnificent. The only criticism I have to make is that it is not longer. It is composed of 7 tracks (5 songs in English and 2 songs in French) for a total of 40'29 of music. The new singer has a very beautiful voice and all the musicians are excellent. My favorite track on the album is Silicon Cirkus and I find the bass solo amazing. Finally the arrangements are nice and the production exceptional. The global sound made me think of Steely Dan from time to time. In conclusion I recommend this record to all prog-rock / new-prog and prog/jazz fans. Congratulations to Orion 2.0
 Orion 2.0: Virtual Human by ORION album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.26 | 42 ratings

BUY
Orion 2.0: Virtual Human
Orion Symphonic Prog

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Mentorship is a beautiful concept that has been around in the artistic world since Eden, seasoned veterans passing on their expertise to a younger generation of artists , often creating an altogether new style albeit with a new found vigour. The French symphonic group Orion was founded back in 1975, disbanding in 1980 and gloriously reforming in 2011, having recently released a few delicious albums , 2017's 'Le Survivant' and most especially the amazing epic 'La Face Visible ' from 2015, which were most appealing. Led by musicians of Polish origin (Janusz Tokarz and Patrick Wyrembski ), they have now positioned themselves as an overseeing influence in terms of production and methodology, giving their young musicians the platform to shine on their own. Virtual Human is a departure from their more symphonic previous catalogue, daringly edging towards a jazzier, more subtle form of prog, certainly more upbeat and crystalline than ever before . While still loaded with crafty chords and complex arrangements, the onus was now more squarely focused on attractive melodies . Lead singer and composer Jerome Nigou certainly stamps his positive style on the tracks , with a mellifluous voice that glides, swoons and caresses with flair. All the other musicians played on the previous opus 'Le Survivant', namely keyboardist Paul Cribaillet , electric guitarist PJ Horville as well as the tight rhythm section of Eric Halter on bass and Cedric Affre on drums. 5 songs are sung in English and 2 in French.

The title track introduces this new climate of shimmer and gleam, expertly infectious groove that grows into a harder edge, propelled by a tight beat, chugging guitar that explodes into frenzied licks and Jerome's suave voice. Modern life with all its gadgets, social media platforms and cellphone /computer interfaces ruling our daily activity. Contrasting the robotic feel with the more organic style they now swear by, Horville adds a more aggressive guitar to the mix that ends the deal.

'T.O.W.U' aims at a proggier covenant, distorted sound snippets churning into a more complex soundstage, contrasting with the lighter vocal-led arrangement, the swooning synth break and some wicked lead guitar soloing that twists and veers like a fly by wire jet fighter.

Keyboardist Cribaillet favours his piano for the next piece 'Run For life' , draping a classical structure onto a more folk tune, aided by a sizzling guitar line , recalling the exploits of a lady athlete who died at too young of an age. The panting arrangement is asymmetrical and choppy on purpose, with only the soft voice remaining to convey the dedication of continuing regardless. The ensuing piano solo is magnificent, steeply rooted in jazz , with a slight Celtic tinge.

'Le Nuage' (the Cloud) is a more direct song that has that swirling guitar feel so unique to PJ Horville, quite a unique style to say the least, as the singer sweetly sings about the effect of an Internet crash and how mankind would cope with such a 'catastrophe' . The lead guitar solo is noteworthy in its simple/complex rhetoric , as its screeches wildly.

'Silicon Cirkus' is inspired by California's fascination for diversity, where sunshine and silicon chips vie for attention and the human/robot conundrum lives supreme , there is a lot going on in terms of musical options: a slide guitar country a la Hotel California, mixed in with some San Francisco Zappaisms, a touch of LA Van Halen feel, and topped off by a blistering 6 string bass solo! Now that is ballsy! Nigou even does some vocalizations that emanates from funk central! Creative to say the least.

The 7 minute ballad 'Silicium' is a slick experiment in progressive creativity, combining breezy George Benson-like guitar phrasings with a high-pitched vocal that hints at quality pop music. Its quality lies in its simplicity and easy listening sheen, sandwiched between the previous wild ride and the upcoming finale which is pure prog.

Another 7 minute epic , ''Shagreen'' (a play on the french word chagrin, which means sorrow) is inspired by an 1831 Balzac novel that offers another take on the classic Faustian choice of granting your wildest wishes at the cost of the Devil owning your soul. An elaborate composition that has moments of intense hypnosis and intensity, a sublime moog solo vying for attention and a satisfying ending to an entertaining , fresh, airy and interesting album.

Orion mark II is quite the discovery, with a bright future ahead. I am still enthralled by ''La Face Visible'' as it delved into subject matter that I hold dear to my heart as it relates directly to who I am and what I have become. It would be therefore unfair to compare it to this new release or any other prog album out there! If you enjoyed Siiilk, another super French band that has some similarities with Orion 2.0 than you will love Virtual Human.

4.5 Imaginary earthlings

 Orion 2.0: Virtual Human by ORION album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.26 | 42 ratings

BUY
Orion 2.0: Virtual Human
Orion Symphonic Prog

Review by TCat
Collaborator Eclectic Team

4 stars Here we have another band formed many years ago, 1975 to be exact, who had disbanded, and now have reformed. Over the years, ORION has produced 5 full-length albums, the fifth album released in September of 2019 which is named "Virtual Human" goes under the band's new moniker "ORION 2.0". Maybe this new moniker is to reflect the reforming of the band, or maybe it is to distinguish the band from other bands with the same name. Whatever the case, this symphonic prog band as founded by vocalist and flautist Laurnet Delenne who gives the band a folkish flavor, by keyboardist Janusz Tokarz and Franck Mormosa on guitar.

The band released one album in 1979, and then we didn't hear from them until 2013 and they have loyally released an album every two years since then. None of the original founders are on this album, except for Tokarz, who only shows up as an additional keyboardist on track 5 and who serves as a co-producer. The core band for the 2.0 version of the band are Jerome Nigou on vocals, Pierre-Jean Horville on guitars, Paul Cribaillet on keyboards and piano, Eric Halter on basses, and Cedric Affre on drums. The album consists of 7 tracks and has a total run time of just over 40 minutes.

"Virtual Human" starts off with a good amount of energy and has a nice neo-prog flavor, but when the airy vocals come in, the music takes on a jazz flair, and a fusion sound progresses from this point, with nice, almost funky guitars nnd bass, and lovely piano. An occasional power chord or two remind us that this is still rock, and the music churns into an exciting and rousing guitar led ending. "T.OW.U." continues with the slight jazz/rock sensibility, which again becomes more apparent when the vocals start. The instruments always follow suit when the airy vocals start, but when there are instrumental breaks, things typically get heavier. All in all, it makes for a nice contrast. This time, there is a more obvious leaning towards progressiveness when the music transitions from the vocal to the guitar solo. Again, the sound is clean and quite appealing.

"Run for Life" begins with a long instrumental introduction, and the sound continues in the same vein of a neo-prog sound, but the vocals come in well into the 2nd minute and the music becomes very mellow and pensive. After the vocals, a nice jazz piano-led interlude takes over. At this point, the lyrics have been in English, but "Le Nuage" is written in the band's native French. The music in this case is more straightforward and has a commercial feel to it. The pop/jazz sound reminds me of my days in Italy listening to Pino Daniele. Once again, there is a nice guitar-led instrumental at the end. "Silicon Cirkus" is obviously heavier with an almost southern rock feel to it, until the robotic voice comes in that reads the lyrics in a monotone, and then the last stanza is sung. The robot voice comes back in French after this. Meanwhile, the music plays along with a repeating background until the regular vocals come back again, then the music again takes a darker and more southern-rock feel that mostly comes from the guitar style. By the ending, the music ventures off into other avenues from a heavy interlude, to a jazz-groove infused guitar solo to end it off.

"Silicium" is the longest track at almost 8 minutes, and starts off slow, pensive and a bit ominous. The slow tempo continues, another jazz guitar solo, and then soft and airy vocals again as the tempo stays soft and slow, this time the lyrics are all in French again. The slow jazz fusion is a nice change to the more upbeat tracks as the band takes on their inner George Benson. The track just takes its own slow and sweet time. Very relaxing. The last track is another 7+ minute track called "Shagreen". The rhythm begins immediately more upbeat and a bit more complex. After a while the music takes a more solid and power chord led turn before finally going into jazz fusion mode again as the vocals come in. The melody is more of an untraditional sound, losing the verse, chorus structure and also becoming more complex, though still quite accessible. The track is more of a concept style and is based on a classic French fantasy novel "La peau de chagrin" written by Balzac in 1831.

Overall, this album takes on a surprisingly jazz feel with occasional outbursts of heaviness and progressiveness, but staying on a more accessible feel. The jazzy attitude of the music is a nice path for the band to take, but as a result, doesn't really say much for the Symphonic tag that the band has. Yes there are progressive traits to the music, but they are not strong as the band chooses to stay on a smoother path with the nice jazz style and occasional spurts of progressive meters and riffs to keep it all interesting. After all is said and sung, the album is enjoyable and one that I can say I would come back to from time to time. The sound is mostly bright and slick with great production and sound, and some high quality passages where the musicianship shines through well.

 Orion 2.0: Virtual Human by ORION album cover Studio Album, 2019
4.26 | 42 ratings

BUY
Orion 2.0: Virtual Human
Orion Symphonic Prog

Review by progz590

5 stars This very beautiful record will be part of my Top 10 of the best albums released this year. I keep listening to him. Prog rock from France with singing in English and French. 7 compositions for a total duration of 40'29. My favorite song is SHAGREEN. A song inspired by the novel by the famous French author Honor' de Balzac "La peau de chagrin" published in 1831 with a magnificent instrumental intro, a strange and fantastic atmosphere carried by an English song and a very beautiful mini moog solo at the end. All the musicians are very good. A great singer with a very beautiful voice and songs that remain in your memory with his contagious melodies. In my opinion, this album deserves these 5 stars. You shouldn't be disappointed.

 Le Survivant by ORION album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.92 | 74 ratings

BUY
Le Survivant
Orion Symphonic Prog

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars A melodically successful offering of poor-sounding prog-by-numbers New Age Neo Prog.

1. "Big Bang" (8:38) horrible two-chord rock with horrible sound production and cheezy rock music and lyrics. Sudden and unexpected shift at 6:00 leads to a completely different sound and style that is very nice, very pretty (though still rather simplistic/prog-by-numbers). Saved from a far worse rating by the final two and a half minutes. (7.5/10)

2. "Cumulostratus" (4:17) opens with New Age jazz sound coming from drums, bass, and acoustic guitar (and, soon, piano). Nice piano-guitar duet--almost Pat Metheny like--in that first minute. Very nice melodies. I don't really like this GOBI/SHASTRA-sounding nylon string guitar sound. The piano solo section gives the piano (obviously an electronically duplicated "piano" sound) a live, onstage at a piano bar sound. Again, this is pure and simply a nice tropical piano bar instrumental song. (8/10)

3. "Peur Du Vide" (6:32) again opens with cheezy Neo-prog sounds and construction. The pseudo-metal electric guitar strums are just too cheezy and take the song down every time they enter. The DAFT-PUNK-like treated vocal is not attractive here. Like a beginner's THE BOX. Some nice subtleties within the song. The keyboard and guitar solos show that this band has some talent. If they could only improve their song composition and find a different engineer or producer. (7.5/10)

4. "Les Ravageurs" (3:38) same simple bass and drums from the previous song? Odd almost ICEHOUSE sound and structure with a kind of singing style and sound reminiscent, again, of THE BOX. (7/10)

5. "Mère Nature" (3:47) BRUCE COCKBURN did this song way better in 1977. It was called "Homme brûlant". (7/10)

6. "La Planète Des Fous" (4:28) now let the gimmicks (toy piano) and quirks begin! Over the course of the first minute I find myself waiting for the song to settle into a groove--to get past the introduction section. It never happens...not even at 2:55 when the horribly distorted guitar (are they trying to get DAVID GILMOUR's sound?) power chords seem to indicate a possible change. Cool synth sounds at the halfway point but the drums are painful! (6.5/10)

7. "Le Dernier Arbre" (6:30) piano, bass and nice drumming open this in jazzy chord progression for the first 45 seconds. Then things shift into a standard slow rock ballad pace and four-chord structure. Gentle singing and seering lead guitar work throughout are less than companionable. At 2:20 the music returns for a few seconds to the cool jazzy progression from the opening, but then it all settles back into the slow ballad format. Wish they'd spend more time exploring that jazzy opening style.(7.5/10)

8. "Le Survivant" (7:35) the title song and it sounds like a demo? Is this a joke? Is this to illustrate to us the kind of sound reproduction quality we'll have at our disposal in a post-apocalyptic world? Wow! They saved the worst for last! The tracks don't even match up with one another! I would be embarrassed if this were my released as my finished, "polished" product! At 3:40 the song shifts into a much better section--though this, again, sounds so derivative of THE BOX's sound and style. And then, quel disappointment, it plays out the same to the song's end! (6/10)

In my humble opinion, this is one of the year's singularly over-hyped albums! Unbelievable!

Three star album; not something I would recommend to anyone unless they have a ton of time and want to hear everything that's available throughout the year.

 Le Survivant by ORION album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.92 | 74 ratings

BUY
Le Survivant
Orion Symphonic Prog

Review by majoprog

5 stars I liked the 3rd Orion album "La Face Visible" but I admit that this new album seems to me even more successful and better product. This record deserves several plays to fully discover all the finesse hidden in it; Eight tracks including an instrumental make up this 4th album with talented guest musicians from other horizons such as jazz. Besides the instrumental composition "Cumulostratus" is in this style.It is based on a beautiful acoustic guitar and a piano solo of beauty.Mention very well also in the rhythmic section bass / drums that brings a solid foundation to the group. Feel free to listen to this new album with attention. Orion is certainly one of the best French progressive rock bands.
 Le Survivant by ORION album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.92 | 74 ratings

BUY
Le Survivant
Orion Symphonic Prog

Review by patjaprog

5 stars With this latest jewel ORION probably produces his best album. This concept album looks like the previous one but gains in quality with more finesse and intensity compositions. The concept talks about current topics that concern us all because we are the main actors of the problems of our planet such as global warming, pollution , GMOs ...This opus is composed of 8 pieces including an instrumental in a jazzy style. Orion shows an exceptional musicality in this album, both in the compositions and in the committed texts. The arrangements are great and the invited musicians are particularly brilliant and are perfectly integrated and inspired. You can feel the influence of King Crimson or Pink Floyd but Orion has his own style that lies between all these groups. With bands like ORION French progressive rock is doing very well. This disc listens from beginning to end without any reserve.
Thanks to Iván Melgar-Morey for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: JazzMusicArchives.com — jazz music reviews and archives | MetalMusicArchives.com — metal music reviews and archives