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Ophiucus biography
French band OPHIUCUS was formed back in 1971, consisting of brothers Alain and Bernard Labacci, Jean-Pierre Pouret and Michel Bonnecarrere. This quartet opted to have their base of operations in the small town of Flagy, where they wrote material that was deemed interesting enough to land them a deal with Barclay Records. Their debut album Ophiucus was issued the same year, but a planned English version of this album was shelved. These alternate language versions would later surface as bonus tracks on reissues.

Ophiucus issued one more album, Salade Chinoise, in 1973. There are no records of activities from them after this point, and it is assumed that they disbanded soon after.

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Salade ChinoiseSalade Chinoise
Ophiucus Ophiucus (Cd)Ophiucus Ophiucus (Cd)
Ophiucus by OPHIUCUSOphiucus by OPHIUCUS
$32.81 (used)
Ophiucus - Ophiucus - Wah Wah Records Supersonic Sounds - LPS100Ophiucus - Ophiucus - Wah Wah Records Supersonic Sounds - LPS100
Wah Wah Records Supersonic Sounds

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OPHIUCUS discography

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

2.77 | 17 ratings
3.00 | 6 ratings
Salade Chinoise

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

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

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

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


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Ophiucus by OPHIUCUS album cover Studio Album, 1971
2.77 | 17 ratings

Ophiucus Crossover Prog

Review by Jeff Carney

5 stars What an absolute gem!

This band were really onto a sound that Harmonium would soon make famous in Canada. Interestingly, the album was also issued in Canada. While the year of the Canadian release appears to be uncertain, I have to figure that Serge Fiori was on top of this find, because the delicate juxtaposition of soft, French language vocals and melancholic Simon and Garfunkel folk is impressively executed on this and it came out three years before Harmonium's debut!

There are some tracks on here that are quite simply breathtaking!

Disappointingly, the previous reviews seem hung up on to what extent this is a "prog" album. To me, once it's here, I prefer to judge it upon the music. And this beauty has songcraft all over it! There are some excursions into acid guitar experiments that wouldn't be out of place on a period Gong album, and even a blues number, but at the core here is the very sound which eventually made Harmonium famous. Perhaps less intimate, and more ethereal, but any fans of Harmonium should be all over this fantastic record!

Be advised, the Musea/Lion CD is typically bad mastering from them. Bright and tinny. The Wah Wah LP sounds a bit better but it's licensed from Musea so I suspect whoever cut the vinyl had the sense to dial back the treble a bit as I would assume they were just sent a copy of the CD to use a source.

The album is so good that I'm off to find the original French LP or at least the Canadian pressing.

Think of "Harmonium Suite" from the s/t Harmonium record, and that should give you an idea what you're in for. Not as fleshed out in terms of instrumentation because you'd have to subtract the trumpet, but think of the "floating through space" mulitracked vocal alongside gently played acoustic guitar ... that's what this album delivers! And some of the melodies are to DIE for!

5 stars; firm.

 Ophiucus by OPHIUCUS album cover Studio Album, 1971
2.77 | 17 ratings

Ophiucus Crossover Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

2 stars This French group came to life after a musicians' meeting organized by Emmanuel Booz in summer 71, which included brothers Alain and Bernard Labacci (on guitars and drums respectively) , bassist Jean-Pierre Pouret and Zoo's founding member Michel Bonnecarrere, also on guitars.They all lived together in the small town of Flagy, where they rehearsed, and finally the Barclay label was the one that got much interested in releasing the band's debut back in late 71'.The name of Ophiucus is derived from a large constellation located around the celestial equator.

The truth is that ''Ophiucus'' sounds like a total mess, showcasing a group with an undeveloped style and a total lack of direction.The majority of this work is centered around Psych/Folk and typical French Songwriter stylings with acoustic guitars in evidence along with warm French, poetic vocals and rather minimalistic soundscapes.Some orchestral passages are also present, while there are some light funky moves here and there, especially on the electric parts.Most of these lightweight tracks are interrupted by more experimental material, such as electric distorted jams, narrations or ethnic percussions either in instrumental or lyrical deliveries.Progressive elements are rather absent, the whole atmosphere is pretty close to Psychedelic Music with minor Pop sensibilities in the acoustic arrangements and the limited instrumentation prevents from a further exposion into more adventurous territories.The result is an unimpressive and incosistent release with no high points at all, except maybe the very good French vocals.

Reputedly an English version of the album was prepared but never released back at the time, and this stuff is included as bonus material in the Musea CD reissue.However be warned that ''Ophiucus'' is today an extremely dated effort with a possible appeal only to French-speaking listeners or die-hard Psych/Folk Rock collectors.

 Ophiucus by OPHIUCUS album cover Studio Album, 1971
2.77 | 17 ratings

Ophiucus Crossover Prog

Review by Evolver
Special Collaborator Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams

2 stars Ophiucus is a french band, that in my opinion just barely made it in to the ranks here at Prog Archives. I know I struggled with the decision at the time. Their sound is mostly a blend of early seventies pop folk styles, primarily reminiscent of Simon and Garfunkel. There are also smatterings of blues and bluegrass.

What won me over were the more experimental pieces, like the opener, Prenez, Donnez that is primarily rhythmic, but has various styles dropped in. There are also a few tracks that are very psychedelic, and bring the excitement level of the album up a bit.

Despite their obscurity, Ophiucus created an album very well fitted for it's time. But now, it pales somewhat.

Thanks to windhawk for the artist addition.

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