Dec 20, 2006

Stage 08, France, ici Paris

Hasta la vista , Spain, Portugal, we return to France en route a Paris. We're not in Paris yet, first stop here is Lyon, my turntable prevented ripping this vinyl last time. So an extra this time.

Carte de Sejour - RhoRhoManie (1984 - * 71mb)

Rachid Taha grew up in France in the poverty-stricken, working-class immigrant community that had sprung up in Lyons. From an early age, music was his lifeline against the hopelessness of immigrant life. He sang, and also DJ'd in clubs, spinning an international blend of sounds that would presage his career. "I played a real patchwork," he recalled, "Arabic, salsa, rap, funk, anything you could dance to."

But the records didn't say what was in his heart, the conflict of being an outsider, his Algerian roots pulling against the tug of European culture. Rachids music career began with his Maghrebi punk trio Carte de Séjour (Green Card) in 1981 (the name refers to the temporary work visas issued to Maghrebis - North African Arabs - coming to France).Their music burned with the fire of a young immigrant generation, following the lead of their heroes, the Clash. Carte de sejours first album Rhorho (2nd generation arabs) manie was produced by Steve Hillage, a working friendship that continues till this day.

It was Carte de Séjour's second album, "Deux et demi", which would really catapult the group to the forefront of the French music scene. For this album, released in 1986, featured Carte de Séjour's highly controversial single "Douce France". With hindsight it burnt them out so they called it quits in '89. Taha has pursued a solo career that has incorporated the fury of rock, the heat of Mexican mariachi music, the trance state of techno and of course Arabic sounds - raï (the Maghrebi salsa, if you will) and the coarser, bluesy chaâbi.

01 - Rhorhomanie
02 - Chemis Ou Nemja
03 - Zamana
04 - Nar
05 - Desole
06 - Ouadou
07 - Blue de Marseille
08 - Habibi
09 - Sounefir
10 - Mirage

Rachid Taha @ Base
Rachid Taha @ Wiki
Rachid Taha @ Amazon

Taha Rocks el Casbah in quicktime
Active Taha Fan Blog

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Vitalic - Ok Cowboy (flac * 360mb)

A few hundred km north of Lyon lies Dijon, home to Vitalic, the musical personality of the Frenchman, Pascal Arbez-Nicolas, whose experimental form of electronic dance production is increasingly stirring the waters of the DJ scene. Rather than sampling musical instruments or the vocals of 1980s power-ballads, Vitalic relies on an innovative use of the synthesizer and therefore is a new advert for the creative talents of dance production.

Vitalic certainly managed to uproot some dancefloors with his dj style, which quickly got him noted by the music press, always on the look out for the latest phenomenon but he managed to evade the press's electroclash label. The last 3 years before releasing his first album he spent djíng on weekends, and technorocking weekdays in his homestudio assempling Ok Cowboy.

From the opening track, 'Polkamiatic', Vitalic's musical art effectively drags the listener into a chaotic circus of electronic sound. However, Ok Cowboy rapidly descends into an underground of industrial techno, epitomised by the dark and sinister undertones of 'Poney Part One' and 'La Rock 01'. Even so, Vitalic's experimentation is notably effective in 'My Friend Dario', a pulsating electro-rock anthem which would shake the foundations of any euphoric dance theatre. A must for budding DJs and underground dance enthusiasts, Ok Cowboy rebukes the notion that dance music is dead.

01 - Polkamatic (1:52)
02 - Poney (Part 1) (5:22)
03 - My Friend Dario (3:37)
04 - Wooo (3:52)
05 - La Rock 01 (5:25)
06 - The Past (4:27)
07 - No Fun (3:36)
08 - Poney (Part 2) (5:12)
09 - Repair Machines (3:45)
10 - Newman (4:50)
11 - Trahison (4:31)
12 - U And I (3:39)
13 - Valletta Fanfares (2:24)

Vitalic @ Base
Vitalic Forum Portal !
Vitalic @ Amazon

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The City of Paris ( @ Wiki) is the most densely populated area in the Western World, excluding the outlying woodland parks of Boulogne and Vincennes, its density in 1999 was 24,448 inh. per km² =40m² per person, 10 million lives make do with that in the city of lights.

Paris derived its name from a celtic tribe the parisii who found some highground hills surrounded by marshes a very good and safe place to live. As did unnamed predecessors from 4,000 bc onwards, btw some claim Paris got its name because of a temple erected to the goddess Isis (mother mary's precurser) at Isis or par Isis who's to say, par ici (this way) sounds find to me aswell as everything/one moves thru and to Paris.

After Hausmann restructured Paris in the latter half of the 19th century, Paris managed to keep it's charm, it survived the worldwars unscaved and these days is mainly under threat from modernist and pretentious architects trying to out do eachother in the spirit of that well known french trait....grandeur..luckely space is limited. The city of Paris remains an attraction for tens of million tourists, aswell as to those that want to live and experience one of the worlds culturally most dynamic cities.

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Motorbass - Pansoul (96 -  401mb)

In 1996, even before the massive success of Daft Punk's debut album "Homework", there were two French dance albums, that were on every discerning dance fan's shopping list, Etienne de Crecy's "Superdiscount" and his collaboration with La Funk Mob member Philippe Zdar under the Motorbass alias. "Pansoul" was widely considered the body of work that kick-started an entire wave of French dance artist albums, and even now, is referenced as a "lost" classic. Pansoul is "The" seminal record of the so called French Touch that has quickly been recycled and used to the bone by bunches of weak producers looking for club hype. It almost instantly became a reference in 1996 as its sound, a mixture of hip-hop, raw funk and house was incredibly innovative at the time and still escapes all types of classification. Etienne De Crecy and Philippe Zdar created an unique, deep and sensual, sometimes unreal soundscape with an incredible hypnotic power.

01 - Fabulous (6:10)
02 - Ezio (8:39)
03 - Flying Fingers (4:49)
04 - Les Ondes (7:48)
05 - Neptune (6:03)
06 - Wan Dence (7:51)
07 - Genius (5:50)
08 - Pariscyde (7:06)
09 - Bad Vibes (D.Mix) (5:18)
10 - Off (indeed ) (0:55)

Motorbass @ Amazon with bonus disc

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Avril - That Horse Must Be Starving (02 ^ 311mb)

Avril Fred ‘Magnon’ Avril was awarded the Prix Constantin in 2002 - the French equivalent to the UK's Mercury Music Prize.
That Horse Must Be Starving (title inspired by a dream) has all the elements of a solidly entertaining chilled-out electronic experience: ambient guitars, rhythmic static, blips, bloops, some throbbing beats sufficient for head bobbing, and even mellow vocals that slide between speakers to create an effective stereo experience. And I guess the point of listening to a mellow album is to be … mellow. Avril may well not be the decadent crooner he thinks he is, nonetheless, despite some flaws, this debut Lp has some suprises, the splendid baroque patterns of underground hit Velvet Blues or the intriguing Lil Louis reprise are quite an exception on an LP that verges on electro-pop. Granted the line between twisted fun for the sake of it and musical brilliance is quite thin but relaxation doesn't mean boredom, with these promising combination of sounds. In 2004 Avril released an excellent breakbeat/electro/downtempo follow up album"Members Only", which seems to have met an exclusive death as it's sparsly available, gosh those samples...

01 - Double Mind 4:45
02 - The Date ( Voc - Ana Rago ) 4:57
03 - Eye World 4:32
04 - Like Everybody Else 5:29
05 - French Kiss 8:16
06 - Helium Life Boat (Voc - Beth Hirsch) 5:41
07 - Velvet Blues 3:41
08 - Global Headphones 7:24
09 - Arlanda Epilogue 4:37

Avril @ Base

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Ethnician - Ethnician (1999 -  393mb)

Ethnician is the band formed by Yvo Abadi (Percussion/Drums), Miguel Saboga (vocals and Percussion), Igor Nikitinsky, Garbis Baharian (Samplers) of Dirty District. their music falls into the category of World Music, Dub and Drum and Bass but also goes into Metal, Reggae and Dance styles also. Discovered by the Printemps de Bourges Festival Network, the band choose to record their first album in an abandoned movie theater located in the African district of Paris. The On U feel is there, if only they could have gotten Adrian Sherwood to produce this, what a cracker it would have been.   The name Ethnician was chosen basically because each Each is from a different ethnic background: Miguel was born in Portugal, Igor was born in Russia, Garbis is from Armenia and Yvo is from Egypt. Recently the band has apparently split and Miguel and Yvo are currently in another Ethnician type band, the heavy percussion-based BOX OHM Station

01 - U.S.S.
02 - Moussaï
03 - Growing Seeds
04 - Dynamite #3
05 - Medicine Man
06 - Think Positiv
07 - A Test
08 - Dub #2
09 - Complaint
10 - Welcome to Fantasy Land
11 - Dynamite
12 - Ate Pode Aleijar

@ MySpace

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VA - Rue Martel - Ya Basta (1999 - * 327mb)

French label founded by Philippe Cohen-Solal (Gotan Project). Christoph H. Müller

The French producer Philippe Cohen Solal started out as a music consultant for leading European film directors such as Lars von Trier and Bertrand Tavernier in the Nineties. He contributed to the first French Touch compilation in 1991, and worked with French electro pioneer Pierre Henry. Müller was a well-known figure on the Swiss electro scene before moving to Paris where he met Cohen Solal (in 1995) and formed the dance imprint ¡Ya Basta!. A number of side projects emerged such as Boyz from Brazil, Stereo Action Unlimited, and Fruit of the Loop. The unifying factor was the duo's love of Latin music and various styles of left-field electronica. Of these creative projects, the one they thought would have least success was Gotan Project: a collaboration with the Argentine guitarist Eduardo Makaroff that attempted to update the tango sound.

"We were doing Brazilian hybrids and other bits and pieces where there was more opportunity to expand," says Müller. "But with Gotan Project there was no flexibility. Tango had a bad image at that point. People thought it was music for old people - boring and rather corny." They turned this outmoded perception on its head by adding beats and visuals to coincide with the highly charged, sensual nature of tango dance steps." They released the album La Revancha Del Tango in 2001 and, much to their surprise, it was an international success. Even Argentina embraced this reworking of the tango sound, coining the phrase "electro-tango".

After moving to Paris ("it's the second capital of tango music"), Makaroff became the conductor of the Club Tango Orchestra at La Coupole, the legendary brasserie. He added milonga (an older variation of the tango) and various folkloric guitar styles to Cohen Solal's and Müller's beefed-up tango concoctions, "The thing about tango is that there's so much material still left to explore," continues Müller. "Like jazz, it's one of the great musical styles of the 20th century. It's as big as pop or rock. The first album just touched the tip of the iceberg. There's the whole folkloric side of the music as well. It's tango with a big T."
On this Ya basta label sampler we find the duo in a number of disguises displaying their explorations into electro-jazz.

01 - Stereo Action Unlimited - Hi-Fi Trumpet (Boyz from Brazil Mix)
02 - Gotan Project - El Capitalismo Foraneo
03 - The Boyz from Brazil - S´Amor (Intense Mix)
04 - The Boyz from Brazil - Boyz from Brazil Theme
05 - Gotan Project - Vuelvo Al Sur
06 - PCS Mind Food - PCS Mind Food
07 - Fruit of the Loop - SxExplore (Boy You Turn Meex)
08 - The Boyz from Brazil - O Nosso Amor (Armada Mix)
09 - Stereo Action Unlimited - Hi-Fi Trumpet (Rio C. Mix)

Gotan @ Base
Gotan Project @ Amazon

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* All downloads are in * ogg-7 (224k) or ^ ogg-9(320k), artwork is included , if in need get the nifty ogg encoder/decoder here !r


Anonymous said...

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regarding Beth Hirsch. Until now, Beth is best
known as the voice & co-writer behind Air’s internationally successful
debut album, 'Moon Safari' with their classic hit, “All I Need” as well as
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feature film, “The Thomas Crowne Affair” starring Pierce Brosnan.

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on Beth and maybe you’d like to chat with her about her experience with
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Jez Colin & Phillippe Balatier who've called aboard such fine musicians
as keyboardist Deron Johnson (Miles Davis, Seal), guitarist Jaime Kime
(Jewel, Michelle Branch) and trumpetist Enzo Villaparedes (Earth, Wind
& Fire) among many others.

Thanks for your time and I look forward to hearing back form you! My email is

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Anonymous said...

Congratulations for sharing Rhorhomanie considered as a masterpiece of 80's french rock. You are the only website to share it. BUT unfortunately, the link is dead. Could you create a new link ? This album was recommended by so many people and cannot be heard (except for those who have a turntable and can spedn money in a vinyl / album never relesed on cd) that would be really great. Thanks a lot if you do it.

Anonymous said...

Dear Rho, is there any chance to get France back up? It's such a nice mix.

Gianni Zhivago said...

could you repost Avril - That Horse Must Be Starving

VanceMan said...

Great "set" on this page ... thanks for re-upping them!

Anonymous said...

hI rHO - could you revive Ethnician please?

cheers & hugs