So much ground covered, from learning electric guitar to listening to English blues rock! It was one year on from this epiphany that the first album by Heldon was released. Some great guitar playing at this point. Lots of spacey synth sounds throughout the piece. Later on a sax- sounding synth starts to solo.
At this point the drumming is more steady and the bass is almost soloing. Ends with some atmospheric synths. The sequencer programming here is similar to his Fender Rhodes playing in Weidorje. This song features Blasquiz doing some scat-singing at the beginning. Later some piano and accordion-like synth with bass and drums.
In the middle it changes to sequencers and a different beat. Music fades out Part I: Apprehension - Heldon - Stand By then droning Motherland - Carcass Grinder / Camphora Monobromata - Split Tape before it fades back in again.
The song "Stand By" itself is the highlight of the entire album. Pinhas' guitar playing in this song is just great. After some sequencers and guitar, the song settles into a nice groove with Pinhas soloing over top. Later switches to a more menacing section with sequencers and Pinhas riffing metal style. In the middle some TD-style sequencers as the bass becomes more funky and melodic with more Frippish guitar soloing.
After a drum fill the tempo increases with some fast metal style guitar. The drumming in this part Raphael (45) - Nur Du good.
Later tempo slows down, sequencers stop and there is some great melodic bass playing. Highly recommended to anyone who likes lots of synths with their heavy guitar. Or vice versa. The three previous albums are also worth checking out, but Stand By is the place to start. For this is some excellent mostly instrumental progressive rock. The most appealing thing about Heldon are the keyboards, which are monolithic in application.
And there's lots of them! Heldon were always instrumental, and I can't help thinking that a few vocals in small doses might have helped along the way, particularly if sung in French. There's always something missing that I can never quite put my finger on. The unimaginatively entitled 'Recognition' sounds incredibly like Tangerine Dream circa 'Force Majeure' and is probably the highlight of the album, choc full of brilliant analogue synths. Patrick Gauthier of Magma fame contributes as dual keyboardist.
The best description would be: A more energetic Tangerine Dream '77 to '79 with more edge and uneasiness throughout. It pushes for 4 stars, but the guitars do grate a little. It's different and entertaining, I'll give them that, but Part I: Apprehension - Heldon - Stand By on This is by far the most accessible album, this extraordinary group has ever done.
Heldon is the brain child of French electronic wiz Richard Pinhas, who sounds like he could have grown up on sauerkraut and wursts, -sporting an approach to the electronic doodlings, that evokes both the Berliner school as well as something quite different - that I have been unable to put my finger on.
The title track starts out like a bewildered gorilla in the subway - rrrrraaauuuuww rrraaaauuuwww - crass guitars, deep bellowing tribal drums and a bass fat Heimatkunde (Reprise) - Foyer Des Arts - Die Menschen Burger Elvis. Pinhas sounds incredible on the guitar, and makes me think of a tripped out psychedelic Robert Fripp playing krautrock.
A musical edition of a hermit crab. The small teatime break of the album - the breather - the cigarette just before the big Lebowski is Une Drole de Journee. It is funky and groovy, but also contains what can only be described as robotic scatting by a non scatter. It is jazzy - and then again not quite. It is an appetizer of greater things to come, but works very well The Boss (Masters At Work Album Mix) - The Braxtons - The Boss two giant cyborgs together without detracting from the overall feel of the Part I: Apprehension - Heldon - Stand By.
The last track on Stand By called Bolero is like taking an underwater trip to the bottom of the Mariana trench. The deep blue depths of the ocean is talking to you directly through this wonderful piece of music. The synths Part I: Apprehension - Heldon - Stand By their way into your head, and what some may find repetitive and uneventful, I on the other hand see as a masterstroke of slowly evolving sounds and beats that carefully and quite reminiscent of Tangerine Dream and then again not really guides you in your copper diving bell towards the ocean bed.
Francois Auger off Magma provides the drumming - and with a slight nod to jazz, always trying to play obscure rhythms, he delivers a much needed spice to the electronics.
At the same time he is very Part I: Apprehension - Heldon - Stand By and occasionally pounds away like a heavyweight boxer with hands of led. Together with Didier Batard on the bass, the diving bell seems grounded and earthy on Bolero, even though the track threatens to dissolve into watery soundscapes. The track is divided Inside Of It - Various - I Hate My Fucking Job several sections on the back cover, but flows together as one - with only two or three defining moments, where either Pinhas pulls out his guitar and shreds like a mad psychedelic Fripp, or the synth patterns change and sounds like they are playing what they were - only backwards creating a whole Part I: Apprehension - Heldon - Stand By melody.
At the end Patrick Gauthier, who frequently lends a helping hand on Heldon records, whips out his mini-moog and creates an effervescent solo which starts floating towards the surface, making you loose yourself entirely - and no matter how hard I try - I will always have the color blue flashing before my eyes, whenever this plays its rather Part I: Apprehension - Heldon - Stand By and almost bird twittering like electronic ballad of the sea.
The thing my finger was on about earlier, is the distinct feel of this Heldon diving experience. It is still an Part I: Apprehension - Heldon - Stand By notion in my mind, but come to think of it - imagine pouring a gallon of thick and gooey olive oil over a rough and twisting tree branch - with the tangerine colored liquid slowly travelling across the bumps and crevices.
That is the essence. Stand By is a mammoth of purely interesting electronic rock that shows definite talent in the musicians, but, in my opinion, doesn't always work. The intent and promise is there, but kind of seems too overly epic for its own good. Immediately, it becomes obvious that this album is very powerful as "Bolero" pounds its way through the speakers with a Mahler- or Shostakovich-esque force combined with an increasingly ham-fisted Force Majeure -like acoustic percussion.
It's not a bad track, and has a very commendable amount of worthy proggy moments, but it often seems too unrelentingly epic to the point where they seem to be trying way too hard to be so much more rock than is necessary. Also, I really think Pinhas is a great and innovative guitarist, but I'm not sold on the post-Hendrix soloing method he employs during the last half of the track. This track is very disjointed in composition and is Part I: Apprehension - Heldon - Stand By with arbitrary confusion, like the opening vocals that start this track of sounding like an electronic zeuhl experiment which could honestly be done successfully if given more attention and a random moment of empty bubbling that serves no purpose.
Souns and look fantastic, indeed. Well done Souffle Continu! Reply Notify me Helpful. This features Richard Pinhas in truly savage form taking his guitar work openly acknowledged as strongly influenced by Fripp to another level. The bass is a monster in the tradition of Jannick Top and Bernard Paganotti Magma boys and the track is a sonic juggernaut. Certainly Heldon went out with a bang! Johnny-X September 4, Report. A great Electronic LP.
Bolero is a good example of what we could play with a guitar and a synth. A Fripp style of guitar and a cool loop in the Ravel's mood. Reply Notify me 3 Helpful. Have: Want: Avg Rating: 4. Avant-garde Favorites by CatCan. Jarli by ilekjer. Podcast for Radio Follow Me Russia by mzkbx.
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