Oxymore Dans La Chrysalide Des Reves
Avantgenre: Musique Onirique
Duration: 51 Minutes
Official site: http://www.myspace.com/odravyel
Review online since: 10.03.2009 / 18:11:46
Oneiric music. Dream music. Made sound; warm sunlight trickling down through the thick deep green sea of leaves, strange and colourful birds playing amongst the foliage in a nameless garden. The wind over a field at springtime, insects and small flowers dancing slowly to its wordless song. A forgotten courtyard in a monastery, ivy climbing up the crumbling stone walls, crawling across the age-old floor towards the centre where a fountain stands carved from crystal, adorned with amethyst and sapphire, water pouring by mechanics no-one remembers, reflecting iridescent patterns upon the surrounding walls. Purple clouds veiling a crescent moon, shapes shifted by the gentle breeze of a midsummer sunset. Like naked feet tripping across the floor of a sunken cathedral. Like the scent of jasmine, or a hidden smile. Music to fall in love with, in love to.
Driven by the amazing melodies of bassist, vocalist and visionary Clement Werner, NARR (which means "jester" in Swedish) sounds like nothing I have heard before. The constantly shape-shifting bass lines and arpeggios dancing gracefully in astonishing beauty are supported by melancholic flutes and calm electric and acoustic guitars, bejewelled with sparse and subtle electronic experiments. The vocals are clear, soft and equally melodic, and in the undergrowth lies the steady upbeat of the drums, surprisingly fast and rock-like. The music is paced yet soothingly calm, beautifully harmonious yet with traces and hints of eerie dissonances; like dreams all wondrous, yet in shadowy corners and behind trees there lurk things without name or counterpart in waking reality - not malicious, but unknown, mysterious. Wafts of paranoia as clouds cover the sun - it's not all sweetness and fluffy rabbits.
If NARR are to be dissected in a mundane fashion, one might turn to comparison. Imagine Opeth without the jazz and with more mystery, Dornenreich without German pine forests, or Ulver's Bergtatt set in France, all sans metal and distortion. The nostalgia of lost times from Ataraxia with hints of the eerie surrealism of Death In June, later Coil or Ved Buens Ende. Close, but hardly enough to capture the essence of NARR - they are much more. As it is completely sung in French, a language beyond my grasp, I understand only what the music expresses and invokes. Which is to say quite a lot. To be honest: when I unexpectedly stumbled upon NARR, I fell in love in an instant, which is a rare occurrence. This debut album might be slightly too long, or too unvaried, for its own good - but then, why should the eight near perfect scintillating jewels of "Oxymore Dans La Chrysalide Des Rêves" be worse than any given smaller number, even if you can't really tell them apart?
1. Zepter Des Narren
2. Ronces Et Iconoclasme
3. La Lyre Cornue Pleure
4. La Dune Bleue
5. Au Bal Des Larves
6. Céphalée Neptunienne (Odravyel)
7. Murénes Du Léthé