Exposé Online banner

Serge Bringolf — Strave
(Soleil Zeuhl 27, 1980/2011, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2013-04-01

Strave Cover artMagma has been known to lean into jazzy territory from time to time, and the Canterbury bands (Soft Machine, Matching Mole) did so even more strongly. Bringolf brings elements of both zeuhl and Canterbury together into an interesting flavor of music. If you're prone to classifying things, you'd probably say this is jazz - large ensemble fusion specifically - though the more Magma-esque touches might throw you off. But hey, they're European, so maybe you don't expect it to be real jazz anyway. The core of this 1980 recording (originally a double LP) is Bringolf at the drums and bassist François Grillot; a brass section, strings, and mallet percussion round out the sound. And of course there's a vocal section as well, providing parts in true zeuhl tradition. All four side-long tracks from the original release are presented with good sound quality - a very live feeling - with my only complaint being a slight lack of oomph in the low end on the bass, but that's perhaps the tone Grillot used on his fretless electric. The musicianship throughout is outstanding, with every player getting a moment in the spotlight, and the compositions are quite solid as well, full of interesting twists and sections. At times, there's a similarity to the extended Mahavishnu on Visions of the Emerald Beyond. Given its genre-straddling sound, Strave is a worthy gem that should should appeal to fans of both jazz and progressive rock without alienating either side.

Filed under: Reissues, Issue 40, 2011 releases, 1980 recordings

Related artist(s): Serge Bringolf

More info
http://www.soleilzeuhl.com

Latest news

2020-09-09
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more

2020-09-05
Gary Peacock RIP – Legendary bassist Gary Peacock, veteran of many recordings and performances with Paul Bley, George Russell, Roland Kirk, Bill Evans, Tony Williams, and many more. » Read more

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the age of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more

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


Previously in Exposé...

Manticore - Time to Fly – Manticore is a new outfit from Sweden and with that name a heavy Emerson, Lake and Palmer influence is bound to be present. The first track, "New Foundation," ripples with ELP right down to the main...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues