Sunday, February 14, 2010

Fluence, FLUENCE

Pôle, 1975; out of print

3 tracks, 37:16

It's been a while since I reviewed something from Pôle Records! Fluence is essentially Pascal Comelade, assisted by different folks on different tracks. Side one consists mostly of the wonderfully titled "A Few Reasons To Stay - A Few Reasons To Split". Featuring a guest appearence from none other than Heldon's Richard Pinhas, this starts with a melodic and soft synth pattern that is soon accompanied by Fripp-esque guitar and what may be a treated guitar loop or a droning organ. It's a classic example of French-style '70s electronic rock, easily ranking with the best of Heldon, Ilitch, and Pôle's other artists. Finishing side one is "Barcelona Tango", featuring Ben Soussan and Ph. Besseme (unfortunately, only Pinhas is credited with any specific instrument; even Comelade's contributions are left unspecified). This is a short jazzy number, certainly enjoyable enough but very much out of place. "Schizo" occupies all of the second side, and it's every bit as cosmic as "A Few Reasons...". Comelade is assisted here by G. Ibanez and J.P. Barreda. Starting off with an electronic drone and several inventive synth vamps, it drifts along blissfully, soon accompanied by some truly soaring guitar. About midway, it gets a bit more chaotic, with the synth and guitar sounds battling it out over the drone to the very end. This too is a great song, and the obscurity of this release is a true shame. As with most things Pôle, a reissue is long overdue. Comelade continued to make interesting music and is still quite active today. His other work is very much worth checking out, but most of it is fairly hard to find. There IS a compilation called BACK TO SCHIZO (1975-1983) which has a five-minute excerpt from FLUENCE, but it's hard to recommend due to its haphazard edits and poor sound.

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