Exposé Online banner

Sens — Les Regrets d'Isidore D.
(Mellow MMP 370, 1999, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2000-10-01

Les Regrets d'Isidore D. Cover artIt took me a little while to warm up to Sens, but once I did, I found myself listening over and over again. The first thing a listener notices about the band is the dramatic singing of Pascal Bouquillard, the lush array of keyboard sounds, and the melodic lead guitar, but what hooked me in the end was the drumming of Stéphane Geille, strong and inventive, full of subtle rhythmic flourishes. The arrangements feature many atmospheric touches courtesy, I suppose, of Vyncent, credited for “every single funny sound or noise you will like.” Comparisons with Ange are inevitable, and it’s not just the fact that it’s progressive rock with French lyrics. The sense of dynamics is similar, the knack they have for taking a long piece and building tension, releasing it, and building it again. Luckily Ange’s warbly organ is nowhere to be heard. The seven tracks range in length from “Sagesse” at a little over two minutes to the 24-minute “La Bête du Gévaudan.” My favorites are the opener, “Marthe à la Niut,” which goes from a quiet string synth intro to a beautiful twin guitar lead to a cooking riff in seven, and “Jeu de Patience,” which provides some of the most aggressive playing on the disc. Vocalist Bouquillard has an impressive range and a highly dramatic delivery, not something you can have in the background and half-listen to. He plays bass, and shares guitar and keyboard duties with the aforementioned Vyncent and Benoît Campedel. It’s been a long time since a French prog band caught my attention, but Sens could be a long-term fave if they keep putting out albums as good as this one.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 20, 1999 releases

Related artist(s): Saens (Sens)

Latest news

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more

2020-06-14
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more

2020-05-14
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santana, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Colour Haze - All – Colour Haze is a German band that is new to me, though they have been recording since 1995. You can pretty much trust any Elektrohasch release to be great, and All, Colour Haze’s seventh release, is...  (2009) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues