Еще один очень ядовитый и мрачный камерно-роковый шедевр от замечательной бельгийской группы. Без комментариев - просто рекомендую, кто еще не слышал.
Present’s first full fledged studio album since their (so welcomed back) return to the Belgian scene is a rather superb, if slightly surprising one. Original members Roger Trigaux, Daniel Denis (both also UZ members) and Alain Rochette return with long-time compadre Guy Segers on bass and Roger’s son Reginald on guitars. This is as far as I am concerned their second-best line-up after the one of the early 80’s. Daniel denis will not be around for that long since he will reform Univers Zero again and Present will find first Pierre Narcisse (ex Daniell Schell And Karo) than settle on a more permanent basis on US citizen Dave Kerman.
If I was suggesting this album is slightly surprising, it is because of the prominence of the vocals as three of the four tracks have singing: while signing may be a bit an approximations for Present’s vocals here, we can talk more of chants or almost black-mass incantations – and not always very good, one must admit. Nothing evil or Satanist, I assure you, just simply dark, sombre and gloomy lyrics, fitting quite well the music. Because for the rest Present is back in fine form and this is certainly quite a worthy follow-up to the Poison album. Delusions will become a favourite in concert, with its never-ending piano riff repetition somehow bringing that minimalism that Present is always slightly hinting at, but here coming out in the open, but the last four minutes is a constant and awesome construction shifting constantly between odd time sigs and great soloing. May Day (in the help sense) is also another concert classic, but I must say that it strikes a bit of a miss to me. Nevertheless, this is yet another typical lenghty track of theirs. Much better IMHO, is the Sense Of Life, which have much better vocals and changing rhythm patterns and slight free jazz improvs. If you are aware of Magma’s works, you will see that Present as definite touches of Zeuhl music in them. Present was always a very rhythmic group and Roger Trigaux’s constant switches from guitars to piano, this allows Rochette use a few keyboards extra including a rare mellotron, sparely used but to great effects. The last track is a self-not-so-explanatory and Rochette-penned Ex-Tango, which is another small gem.
Funnily enough (and this will be the case in future albums), even with the extended space of the Cd compared with the vinyl, Present chose to keep this album around the 40 min mark (around the same as in their vinyls), which given the sombre nature of their music is quite a reasonable and mature decision. Much recommended and sufficiently close to their early albums to be a good intro to their strange oeuvre.
Sean Trane (Hugues Chantraine)
1. Delusions (14:48)
2. May Day (10:00)
3. The Sense Of Life (11:08)
4. Ex-Tango (3:46)
Total Time: 39:42
Roger Trigaux - guitar, keyboards and vocals
Reginald Trigaux - guitar and vocals
Alain Rochette - piano and keyboards
Guy Segers - bass
Daniel Denis - drums, percussion and vocals
All compositions by Roger Trigaux except "Ex-Tango" by Alain Rochette
Lyrics for "Delusions" by Roger Trigaux and Luc Govers, "May Day" by Roger and Reginald Trigaux and "The Sense Of Life" by Roger Trigaux
Cuneiform Records #Rune 107
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