Exposé Online banner

André Balzer — Entre l'alpha & l'omega (Opus 1)
(Musea MP 3227, 2011, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2013-10-20

Entre l'alpha & l'omega (Opus 1) Cover artIf the name doesn’t sound familiar, the voice certainly will. Balzer was the vocalist of French progressive band Atoll, and this ambitious solo concept album finds him in finest form, as composer, vocalist and guitarist. With a supporting cast of no less than 18 players and vocalists, the overall feel is a sort of dreamy and slightly jazz oriented art-rock with frequent flashes of instrumental brilliance. There’s also a folky undercurrent on many of the tunes as well, which plays well to a gentleness that follows through the entire effort. Some of the more rocking tunes like “Libera Nos” will most definitely remind the listener of Atoll in the Tertio and Rock Puzzle period. There are 19 tracks in all, though many are simply shorter spoken interludes that tie the main pieces together, some of which are strung together into longer suites. The eclectic nature of much of this tends to take a few listens to absorb; it tends to wander all over the place while going from one idea to the next. Many of the songs are melodically memorable, like the haunting “Lundi 5 au Soir” that whirrs along seemingly through a series of dark caverns, punctuated by portals of glowing intensity. There is plenty here to pique the imagination, and those conversant in French may get even more from its lyrical side. A solid and welcome return for Balzer.

Filed under: New releases, 2011 releases

Related artist(s): André Balzer

Latest news

2020-03-24
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more

2020-03-17
Cruise to the Edge and Seaprog 2020 Festivals Postponed – The worldwide outbreak of the novel coronavirus has started to produce casualties in the music world, and festivals are not immune. We've had word that both the Cruise to the Edge (originally slated for March 27 - April 1) and Seaprog (originally June 5-7) have been postponed to later dates, with those dates to be announced. » Read more

2020-03-06
McCoy Typer RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of one of the most influential pianists in the history of jazz, McCoy Tyner. His tenure with John Coltrane in the early 60s includes some of the most treasured recordings of the era, including My Favorite Things and A Love Supreme. After leaving Coltrane's group, he had a long and successful solo career. He was 81. » Read more

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Various Artists - Progressive & Melodic Rock Vol. 1 - 3 – Can you say Neo? Do you enjoy the music of bands like Marillion, Rush, Saga and Tears for Fears? Do Univers Zero, Area, Etron Fou and Il Balletto di Bronzo give you nightmares? If the answer to the...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues