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Malicorne - En Public CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

4.00 | 11 ratings

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4 stars This album was recorded live in Montreal in 1978 ("El Casino" - 2/12/1978 and 3/12/1978) when Malicorne were probably at their best. If you're not familiar with this band I think that "En public" could be a very good introduction to their music.

The first track "La semaine" (also known as "Couché tard levé matin", originally released on Malicorne IV) describes the hard week of a farmer and is played in medley with two traditional dances featuring the violin in the forefront.

"Le mariage anglais" is a beautiful ballad with an elaborated arrangement that tells the story of a French king's daughter compelled to marry an Englishman because of "political reasons".

"Le prince d'Orange" is a traditional song arranged "à cappella" with beautiful harmony vocals. It is a song against war and tells the story of a French prince wounded to death by the English army.

"L'écolier assassin" is a beautiful and melancholic long ballad that tells the story of a man that, following the wicked advice of his mother, kills his sweetheart. Sad and "noir", this is one of my favourite Malicorne's song (the original version is on "Almanach").

"Pierre de Grenoble" is another sad love ballad. It is played in medley with "Schiarazzula marazzula" (also known as Schiarazula marazula or Schiarazzola marazzola), a composition of Giorgio Mainerio from Aquileia (1535-1582) that is part of the repertory of the Benandanti, an heterodox sect strongly influenced by the Jewish- Christian culture that had in the sacred dance one of the most typical features: the «schiarazz» and the «marazz» were respectively the reed and the fennel used by them during their night rites... By the way, if you like this genre. A version of "Schiarazula marazula" with lyrics in Italian was released in 1978 by Angelo Branduardi as "Ballo in fa diesis minore". Branduardi released also an English version of this song with lyrics written by Peter Sinfield and a French one with lyrics by Etienne Roda-Gil. Another Branduardi's version of this piece is on the album "Futuro antico II (Sulle orme dei Patriarchi)".

The dark "La danse des damnés" tells the story of four boys and four girls condemned to dance until they die. It is a good introduction to some reels and to the following instrumental "Suite de branles", a medley of traditional dances featuring as a special guest Brian Gulland (Gryphon) on bassoon and flute, where the members of the band show their great musicianship and energy.

The final track "C'est le mai" is another short arrangement "à cappella" where the band ask the public to join them in their amazing harmony vocals.

In the whole "En public" is an excellent album. If you like The Pentangle, Fairport Convention and Gryphon and if you are interested in the French language and culture I'm sure that you'll fall in love with it.

andrea | 4/5 |


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