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Eider Stellaire - Eider Stellaire II CD (album) cover

EIDER STELLAIRE II

Eider Stellaire

 

Zeuhl

2.54 | 20 ratings

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Sagichim
Special Collaborator
Eclectic Prog Team
3 stars I got Eider Stellaire's debut about 15 years ago and for a very long time I thought the band had only released one album, so when I found out they had two more I just had to have them, no matter what's the music like. The album was released in 1986, 5 years after their magnificent debut. About half of the original line up is not there anymore and so is the style of the music. I'm very curious to know where were they trying to go with this release, it sounds like a weird adaptation of zehul for the 80's, and although I do like the album, I think this attempt will not appeal to many people. Most of the material suffers from a lack of development, some of the songs are kind of empty, where not much is going on except for the main theme. Gone are those wild fierce instrumentals containing saxophones and guitars, keys are now very different and sounds much more updated to the 80's, the chanting like vocals have taken a turn and adjusted to the 80's. The songs are less ambitious now, the fusion kind of interplay is now replaced with a more song based tunes or some more atmospheric attempts. It's clear that the band is trying a different approach, a much calmer and easy sound, unlike the wild and sinister playing of before. There are 6 songs here, one of them I wouldn't really consider a song or anything, and the whole thing is only 27 minutes long.

Although my impressions looks negative, as I said I do like this album, the songs are not bad imo, they are just very different from what we already got to know by the band. The songs are lighter and maybe more accessible although still contain some amount of weirdness. I don't think I could classify this as zehul anymore, although it does conatin some zehul elements, first of all that grainy deep kind of bass tone is still present and that kind of continues drilling mantras are also there to some extent. The vocals are different now and are not zehulic but are much more inspired by Frank Zappa, I can't help but feel that the music is a bit more psychedelic too. Yes I know it's hard to imagine how this whole think is even possible, you gotta hear it to believe.

Ring the opener starts and you already feel something is different, there's a different vibe now, much lighter. Bass and vocals drives the rhythm as the keyboards feel out the song, this is maybe the closest as you'll get to improvisation or solos on this album, good stuff. Aretis continues the line of that 80's jazzy/zehulic rhythm again topped with Zappaesque vocals, although comes out as a little flat overall it is surprisingly enjoyable to my ears. The next Kiowa Riviere De Lune is a calm short piece, which contains pretty much nothing inside, not a very effective attempt. Fferyllt is better but could have been much better, I like the main theme here, nice overall but nothing more really. Delebration De L'eau is more sinister with a prominent bass line and some restraint keys on top, again nice but nothing more.

Not a bad album but could have been so much better, I would recommend it only for completionists who's curios to see the band's evolvement, like me. 3 stars barely.

Sagichim | 3/5 |

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