Saens - Escaping From The Hands Of God

Year of Release: 2001
Label: Cyclops
Catalog Number: CYCL 100
Format: CD
Total Time: 73:53:00

France is a weird country. Chauvinistic as they are, they sometimes lock themselves away from the outside world so noone knows what's going on and then they suddenly emerge with an album that carries an enormous labour of love. Containing five long tracks and a shorter instrumental epilogue, a huge choir collaborates on this album by Saens, which also harbours cello and flute. Although sporting a real drummer, nevertheless drum loops are used by none other than the great Abe Laboriel, Jr. Musically I hear snipppets from so many influences that it becomes difficult to really label the band. From a vocal point of view, Pascal Bouquillard holds the middle between Vincent Fis (Now) and Mario Guccio of Machiavel fame. I hear bits of Mona Lisa, Arrakeen, Now, Pendragon, Mike Oldfield, all sifting through the music.

From the pure neo-prog Saens switches to the more folky instrumental "Ayanda" which is interspersed once again by all kinds of atmospheres including many experimental sections before ending with a jazzy piano improvisation. It's the same experimental feel which sets off "The Crawler" before a predictable rhythm takes it back to pure neo-prog territories. Instead of a well crafted composition, however, it sometimes comes across as a mere cacophony, even if they add (god knows why) some Latino elements towards the end. "Requiem" is my favourite track, containing vocal battles between the band members and the skilled professional choir. Pity about the bad choice of synth sound though, and also a big question mark as to why the band switches from English to French just for this track, whilst the choir tackles its lyrics in Latin. Real flute and cello take the short instrumental "Epilogue" to a higher level, delivering the kind of music I was hoping to hear throughout the entire album. The more I listened to this album it appealed to me less and less. If Saens tackles another album, let them approach the music as during "Epilogue" and all will be forgiven!

Babel Lights (16:34) / Ayanda (11:51) / The Crawler (13:49) / Alone (16:23) / Requiem (11:25) / Epilogue (3:35)

Pascal Bouquilladr - vocals, bass, additional guitars & keyboards
Vynce Leff - guitars, keyboards, vocals, additional midi winds
Benoit Campedel - guitars, additional keyboards
Damien Gadenne - drums

Sens - Les Regrets D'Isidore D. (1999)
Escaping From The Hands Of God (2001/2002)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin FR

Added: October 13th 2002
Reviewer: John "Bobo" Bollenberg

Hits: 531
Language: english


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