Exposé Online banner

Paga Group — Gnosis
(BLCD 013, 1993, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 1994-05-01

Gnosis Cover artPaga today is: Bernard Paganotti, former monster-zeuhl bassist with Magma and Weidorje, Klaus Blasquiz, former Magma lead vocalist on all their best albums, Bertrand Lajudie on keyboards, and new members Francois Laizeau on drums, who played with Magma, Offering and Yochk'o Seffer in the 80s, and Eric Seva on soprano and tenor saxes and EWI. So one would expect a lineup with such a pedigree to be pumping out intense, throbbing zeuhl-fusion, right? Like the two previous Paga albums, right? Wrong. In fact it may disappoint some who are expecting some continuity from previous albums, but in fact this album is very different - and even took me by surprise, having heard some live tapes from less than a year before this release. The band has deliberately taken a big step in a jazzier direction. That said, and notwithstanding a more commercial lite-version of their classic "Urantia" that opens the album, the music here is quite good, and in fact may be the best Paga yet; overall the sound is more subtle, yet on close listen one can detect all the fire of Paga past, Paganotti's ever riffing bass, Laizeau's crafty touch on the drums. The keyboards are toned down a bit to make room for the saxes, and due to the jazzier feel of the music, Klaus' voice sounds quite a bit softer than I've heard it before, which tends to translate into more accessible on the vocal tracks (of which there are three). Yet under the smooth surface, all the power and energy are still there, waiting to be heard. Most notable are the tracks "Caravan," "Zigzag," and the eleven-minute Lajudie penned "Jazzobizz." This is an album that takes a few listens to be understood and appreciated; unlike Haunted, it won't jump out of the speakers and grab you by the jugular, but it does make for some compelling listening... after ten-plus times through I'm still discovering new things I haven't heard before.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 3, 1993 releases

Related artist(s): Bernard Paganotti

Latest news

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more

2019-04-24
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more

2019-04-10
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more

2019-03-25
Scott Walker RIP – Noel Scott Engel, better known as Scott Walker, was one of the most intriguing and enigmatic musical figures in the second half of the 20th Century. His strange career started with The Walker Brothers, an American pop group that featured no one named Walker and no brothers. After moving to England in 1965, they had a series of hit singles. Scott's solo work started with Scott in 1967. Starting in the 80s, his work took an increasingly avant-garde turn. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Vinegar - Vinegar – This band from Cologne selected their name to set themselves apart from bands that sounded “sweet” and forged a decidedly unconventional course with their music. After roughly a year of...  (2005) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues