Sec — L'Aventure Complète de George Gallamus
(Dur et Doux DD-043, 2020, LP+CD / DL)
by Henry Schneider, Published 2020-07-06
L'Aventure Complète de George Gallamus has got to be one of the strangest albums I have ever heard. It is in a league by itself and Sec claims that it is a punk fable inspired by Lightning Bolt, Shostakovich, Stupeflip, Chromb! or No Means No, Only by Louise Michel, Candide by Voltaire, Wine by Titou Picard, and films by Jean-Baptiste Alazar. Recorded in a barn by Sec members Jules Ribis (bass) and Xavier Tabard (drums) with spoken French and at times French lyrics, I am at a loss to even understand their cited references. It certainly does not sound like a “punk fable” to me. I cannot discern any connections from track to track, other than they tend to segue from one to the next. The album opens with the metal scraping and grinding sounds of an old vehicle starting, then silence. Sounds slowly emerge such as bird song, ambient outdoor sounds, cars, closing doors, and vehicle back-up warning beeps that provides the starting point for the drum tempo and bass part that swells to savage riffing and yelling. The music abruptly stops, replaced by quiet ambience with odd sounds and wordless oohs, which shifts to a bass ostinato and drums that again swell to agressively loud music. This repeated shifting continues throughout the first track as well as the rest of the album. And the track ends with a barking dog. Then the closing track “Tout est à nous” begins as a complete surprise with the sounds of rain and dripping water in a culvert, and suddenly there is beautiful melodic singing by both men and women for four minutes. Again there is an abrupt shift back to Sec’s brutal bass and drums and multiple tempo and mood shifts. Plus there is the sound of fireworks. L'Aventure Complète de George Gallamus is extreme music that will take an intrepid and dedicated listener to make it to the final minutes of crickets, scraping, inhaling, talking, tapping, and crackling fire. Approach with caution.
Related artist(s): Sec
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