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Jelly Fiche: Tout ce que j'ai reve

The three Frenchmen in Jelly Fiche may not sing in English, but their music speaks the universal language of progressive rock.

With a flair for the dramatic and the psychedelic, not to mention a fierce allegiance to Pink Floyd, Yes and King Crimson, Jelly Fiche have made one of the most memorable prog albums of the year – and I can't understand a damn word sung by vocalist Syd. Yes, it's just "Syd," whose unassuming name is perfect for his emotive Everyman vocals (which are often based on lyrics penned by French-Canadian poet Guy Marchamps). Stunning musicianship helps the Canadian band move from the symphonic to the avant-garde in the midst of the same (long) song – nine tracks span 63 minutes – and an exotic saxophone, especially on the title track and "Les Arbres," lifts Tout ce que j'ai reve far above similar-sounding albums. Each player brings multiple styles to the music, making this seem like the work of significantly more than three men. Gary Tanin, whose resume includes Daryl Stuermer and Roger Powell, mastered Tout ce que j'ai reve to sound lush, edgy and seductive.

Unicorn Digital is promoting this as a concept album that echoes Seventies-era Quebec bands such as Maneige and Harmonium. But it's clear that Jelly Fiche is intent on making retro prog for a new generation. Mission accomplished, as this band has recorded one of the genre's best albums of 2008.

Track Listing:
1) Tout ce que j'ai revé
2) Les Arbres
3) Caché au Fond plus Haut
4) Source Infinie
5) In Vitro
6) Dans la Peau d'un Autre I
7) Dans la Peau d'un Autre II
8) La Fontaine
9) La Cage des Vautours/Liberté

Added: October 29th 2008
Reviewer: Michael Popke
Related Link: Jelly Fiche on MySpace
Hits: 2394
Language: english

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Jelly Fiche: Tout ce que j'ai reve
Posted by Jon Neudorf, SoT Staff Writer on 2008-10-28 23:48:18
My Score:

Unicorn Digital has come out with perhaps one of the best CDs of 2008 (at least of the albums I have heard) and there has been some outstanding releases so far this year. I know this is a strong statement but after listening to Jelly Fiche's debut album I feel it is a very valid claim. Jelly Fiche are, you guessed it, from Quebec. There seems to be no shortage of talent coming out of that province lately. The core band comprises of Syd (bass, lead and backing vocals), Eric Plante (keys, saxophones, programming) and Jean-Francois Arsenault (acoustic and electric guitars, backing vocals). Since I do not speak French I cannot comment on the lyrical content of this album except to say that the words flow nicely and nothing seems forced or out of place. Most of the lyrics were written by Syd and Guy Marchamps (a well known Canadian poet). While I do like to understand what is being sung the most important part to me is the music, and this, my fellow readers, is wonderful stuff. By the way, the album's title translated into English is "Everything I Have Dreamed."

What makes this so special is the fact that this is their first album. The future is indeed bright for these talented musicians. Musically, their main influence has to be Pink Floyd, and myself being a fan of the Floyd, may be why I dig this album so much. You will hear plenty of symphonic moments to rival those halcyon days of the 70's like bubbling synths and splashes of keyboards creating a real wall of sound. Not to mention the Gilmour-like guitar that is found all over this disc. Acoustic guitar is also used to accentuate the mood. The album is also strong in the vocal department as Syd has a pleasing voice and there are many nice harmonies found throughout.

Although I have mentioned Pink Floyd as a main influence please do not think this is a rip-off of that great band. Jelly Fiche provide plenty of original sounds all wrapped up in a modern production that sounds great. Album highlights include "Les arbres" where all the instruments seem to shine including some ripping saxophone that adds a jazzy feel and vocals reminding me of Dark Side Of The Moon Floyd and "La cage des vautours /Liberte" which starts with light acoustic guitar leading to some wonderful sax, heavier guitar parts and back again. This is progressive rock at it's finest and a great way to end the album. So, if you like your progressive rock served in the spirit of the 70's with a modern twist, please, show support for the band and buy this album. I promise you will not regret it.

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