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ALCO FRISBASS

Eclectic Prog • France


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Alco Frisbass biography
ALCO FRISBASS is a French duo consisting of multi-instrumentalists Fabrice CHOUETTE (keyboards, guitars, voice, recorder, whistling, percussion) and Patrick DUFOUR (Fender Rhodes, keyboards, drum programming, chimes). They fuse jazz, Canterbury, and symphonic elements, oftentimes sounding like an amalgamation of SPOCK'S BEARD and GENTLE GIANT.

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ALCO FRISBASS discography


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3.90 | 85 ratings
Alco Frisbass
2015

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ALCO FRISBASS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Alco Frisbass by ALCO FRISBASS album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.90 | 85 ratings

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Alco Frisbass
Alco Frisbass Eclectic Prog

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Jazz-Rock / Fusion / Canterbury Team

3 stars I've toiled with writing a review for this simple enjoyable debut AltrOck Productions album from the French duo of Patrick Dufour and Fabrice Chouette for over half a year now. And now I've finally figured out why! This is a Neo Prog album! This is a Neo Prog album by an artist who has an obvious affinity toward the keyboard-driven sounds and melodies of the Canterbury Scene of the late 1960s and early 1970s. However, there is very little presence of the often complex, jazz- and classical-based structures experimented with and favored by those Canterbury artists in the music presented here by ALCO Frisbass. The sounds that Patrick and Fabrice create are obviously intended to replicate the sounds of the more common/famous instrumental sounds associated with the Canterbury "sound," but to my ears, these sounds are not as close to the actual sounds of Canterbury artists like Mike Ratledge, Steve Hillage, Dave Stewart, Mike Oldfield, or Phil Miller as to be able to constitute the use of the word "replicate." Plus, the use of guest musicians for the contribution of violin, guitar and mellotron actually serves to create a further divergence/distance/discord with the original mix of sounds used in the Canterbury scene. The other flaw with this very likable, even enjoyable music, is in the simplicity of the music?especially in the rhythmic foundations of each song. There are very few dramatic shifts in tempo, key or dynamics in these songs; all instrumental soli are played as if the artists handling the instruments be melody-conscious while somehow acting quite disconnected from or even oblivious to the musical base coming from the background foundational instruments (bass, drums, and keyboards). Plus, the feel I get from the bass, drums and keyboards is that they are there more for the exclusive purpose of creating a foundational base for other instruments to solo over which is not the usual feel I get from the background instrumentalists in jazz or Canterburian songs. The original artists of what we call the Canterbury Scene feel as if they each remained creative individuals despite their place in the musical mix?leader, supporter or soloist?each actively and creatively contributing to the mix that makes up the foundational harmonic and rhythmic structure of each song?even beneath the not-infrequent soloists. The album's best songs?2. "Pas à pas" (6:42) (9/10), 4. "La danse du pantin" (7:44) (9/10), and 6. "Judith Coupeuse de tête" (9:08) (8/10)?each captivate a lot of nice melodious Canterburian sound and feel yet fail to reveal anything new or innovative?and never fail to ever impress with instrumental prowess, creativity or technique. There are more similarities in this music to Neo Prog like fellow countrymen XII Alfonso or Minimum Vital: melody?often exceedingly linear and simplistic?dominates heavily over harmony and experimentation?which is fine. As I've said throughout, this is wonderfully listenable, even enjoyable music. Not bad, just not great. A 3.5 star album. Nice songs with nice sound but lots of potential for growth here! Good but not great.
 Alco Frisbass by ALCO FRISBASS album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.90 | 85 ratings

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Alco Frisbass
Alco Frisbass Eclectic Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

5 stars ALCO FRISBASS are a relatively new band out of France, a duo in fact of multi instrumentalists Patrick Dufour and Fabrice Chouette. We do get some guests helping out including violinist Archemede De Martin, guitarist Jacob Holm(WHITE WILLOW) and Thierry Payssan(MINIMUM VITAL) on mellotron. The music is very much keyboard driven as there are a variety of them, and there is a Canterbury flavour to this as well. I just can't get over how amazing the compositions are though. Complex sure, but they are just so interesting and I really like the melancholic vibe this recording has as well.

"La Suspension Ethereenne" features some relaxed Fender Rhodes as the violin comes in over top. It then kicks into gear at 1 1/2 minutes as the rhythm section and violin standout. A calm follows before it kicks in again this time with the mellotron helping out. Check out the keyboards before 3 1/2 minutes. I love the melancholic synths before 6 minutes as the song continues to change in tempo and mood. More violin after 7 minutes but check out the guitar after 9 minutes. So good! "Pas A Pas" has some different keyboard sounds to start and they sound amazing. Love the melancholy as the drums join in. Man there is so much going on and it all moves me for some reason. A calm with piano only before 4 1/2 minutes as other sounds start to join in including synths and violin. It fades out to end it.

"Induction Magnetique" has these catchy pulsating keyboards with percussion and bass as it builds. This is a real toe-tapper. Some vocal melodies as well before 1 1/2 minutes which suits the music really well. A happy tune no doubt. Piano then comes to the fore followed by distorted organ sounds then mellotron 3 1/2 minutes in. Piano leads again but it's interesting that we get the same melody but with different instruments leading. The guitar leads after 7 minutes then mellotron 8 minutes in. "La Danse Du Pantin" is kind of jazzy with drums, Fender Rhodes and bass. Some crazy keyboard sounds come and go over top. The organ is a nice touch before 2 minutes. A calm with piano only arrives a minute later as the bass joins in then it builds. Simply a great sounding song, but they all are to be honest.

"Escamotage" has so much going on early on as the ever present drums and keyboard sounds lead the way. Some organ and violin come and go then mellotron after 3 minutes. I love the guitar that joins in. Sounds like a horn before 5 minutes as it calms down. So good and we're only half way through this song(gasp!). Hey we even get some whistling 8 minutes in and later around 11 minutes. "Judith Coupeuse De Tete" is the closer and it opens with keys as the drums and organ join in. Back to piano only then picked guitar and organ as it builds some although this is all fairly laid back so far. I'm not the biggest fan of the sound after 5 minutes that lasts about a minute. A calm follows and I like the jazzy vibe to follow. It ends with some crazy applause which I think the band inserted for humour.

I saw many Avant fans praising this album so I was very surprised when I first heard it as I assumed it would be more in that vein but it's not. Without question this will be near the top of my "Best of 2015" list at the end of the year. A must!

 Alco Frisbass by ALCO FRISBASS album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.90 | 85 ratings

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Alco Frisbass
Alco Frisbass Eclectic Prog

Review by Windhawk
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars French band ALCO FRISBASS was formed in 2013; it represents the dual partnership of Fabrice Chouette and Patrick Dufour: a modern studio based entity that doesn't have any plans to expand this project beyond the recording studio, at least at the moment. They released their self-titled debut album through Altrock Records' sublabel Fading in 2015.

French duo Alco Frisbass and their selected guest musicians have produced quite a charming affair with their self-titled debut album. A nice flowing, instrumental production with layers of vintage keyboards, a more careful guitar presence and a firm rhythm foundation that blends symphonic progressive and jazz rock together in a warm, engaging manner. The symphonic elements dominate though, and I'd recommend this CD to those with a general taste for vintage-oriented symphonic progressive rock, and then in particular to those, who prefer music of this type to be instrumental and with a focus on vintage-sounding keyboards of various kinds.

Thanks to epignosis for the artist addition.

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