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Tertio Import

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Audio CD, Import, January 1, 1977
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Editorial Reviews

ATOLL is one of the most renowned Seventies French Progressive rock bands, if not one of the best. Singer André BALZER, drummer extraordinaire Alain GOZZO and their colleagues display a music both complex and very elaborated, with sophisticated arrangements and constant melodic research. Recorded in 1974, ""Musiciens-Magiciens"" reveals itself as a great debut album. Undeniable masterpiece of the band, ""L'Araignée-Mal"" (1975) saw the arrivals of the talented guitar player Christian BEYA and famous violinist Richard AUBERT (KOMINTERN, GONG, TRIBU, VIOLON D'INGRES, ABRACADABRA...). The two keyboards players know perfectly how to use their Mellotrons and Moogs with accuracy, into varied and tricky compositions. This opus is the most ambitious piece of work ever made by ATOLL, recorded as the band was at the peak of its form. The inspired and masterfully played jazz-rock of ""Cazotte n°2"" is the perfect counterpart of two long tracks filled with lyricism. And watch out for the conceptual title-track clocking at twenty minutes ! The whole puts ATOLL besides YES or KING CRIMSON for musical sophistication, as well as THE MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA. An impressive calling card, isn't it ? Recognised then both for their melodic perfection and for their composing and arranging skills, the members recorded ""Tertio"" (Without a second keyboardist or a violinist) two years later, resolutely performing a refined Progressive rock in which the singer's peculiar voice became verbal music. ""Rock Puzzle"" (1979) presents a more concise and varied music that followed the same orientation as the one taken by ANGE and MONA LISA at the same period. The first two albums include some live bonus tracks, and the fourth one three previously unreleased tracks with the great John WETTON ! Disappointed by the split-up of U.K., the British singer-bassist had seriously thought about joining the band from Metz. He gave them such songs as ""Here Comes The Feeling"", performed a few months later by ASIA ! The four first ATOLL studio albums are now reissued by the Musea label in Digipack format, reproducing the original vinyl cover. ""Tokyo, C'Est Fini"" is a live album recorded in Japan in 1989 by the ""New ATOLL"", in which Christian BEYA was the only original member remaining, now accompanied here by youngsters such as singer Raoul LEININGER and drummer Gilles BONNABAUD. It was during this period that ""L'Océan"" was recorded, becoming the last ATOLL studio album ever. It is now reissued by the Musea label, in a clearly revamped edition. The CD benefits from re-recorded or never-heard-before parts, and the bonus-tracks are made of two live songs, as well as the track ""Try Not To Worry"", composed in 1983 by a short-lived incarnation. The splendid cover-art is obviously inspired by the one illustrating the famous ""Tales From Topographic Oceans"", painted by Roger DEAN for YES. Musically speaking, this sequel shows how good the band adapted the complexity of its writing to the sound of the Eighties. Do you really want to taste the best of French Progressive rock ?

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Paris C'est Fini
  2. Dieux Meme
  3. Gae Lowe
  4. Cerf-Volant
  5. Tunnel

Product Details

  • Audio CD (January 1, 1977)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Musea
  • ASIN: B00004VA03
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #557,465 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey J.Park VINE VOICE on April 16, 2007
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I really enjoy the music of French band Atoll and feel that this 1977 album is right up there with their 1975 prog/jazz rock masterpiece L'Araignee-Mal. I especially liked the blend of symphonic prog and jazz rock on L'Araignee-Mal, although the jazz rock has been toned down a bit on Tertio. As such, this is great symphonic prog through and through. The five tracks on the album range in length from 4'49 to the 13+ minute two - part Tunnel suite. Total running time is 37'49".

The lineup on Tertio includes Jean-Luc Thillot (electric bass guitar); Alain Gozzo (drums and percussion); Michel Taillet (piano, Eminent, mini-moog, clavinet, percussion); André Balzer (lead vocals, percussion); and Christian Beya (electric and acoustic guitars). All of the guys are great players and there is some fantastic synthesizer work throughout - I do need to single Alain out however, this guy is a great drummer and really moves things along. André has a very dramatic vocal style (he sings in French) that reminds me somewhat of Christian Deschamps (of Ange) - it is very good and works well with the material.

Musically, I think this is an exceptionally strong album even though some folks feel that it is inferior to L'Araignee-Mal. I will however, agree that the jazz rock influences are virtually absent and that highly melodic symphonic prog is set at center stage - which, in this instance is a good thing. As such, you will find intricate ensemble work, a wide dynamic range, virtuoso soloing, superb arrangements, well thought-out and haunting melodies (vocals in French) and harmonies, in addition to fantastic sounds on the mini-moog and Eminent (they are both plastered all over this album).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By BENJAMIN MILER on December 26, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Atoll, along with Magma, Pulsar, and Ange, was one of the best known prog rock bands to come out of France. Tertio, originally released in 1977 on the EuroDisc label, was the third album by Atoll. Often compared to Yes, which I can't figure out why, because at least on this album, they don't sound much like Yes (I hadn't heard their previous two albums, so I can't comment there). The music here is symphonic prog as you expect from the late 1970s. The vocals are in French, but unlike, say Ange, the vocals here seem more easy to take in and not as intrusive. The keyboards are also as you expect from prog at this time: Mini Moog, string synth (in this case, the Eminent), and clavinet, with the rest of the instrumentation consisting of the usual (guitar, bass, drums). The opening song, "Paris, C'est Fini" starts off great, but it's my least favorite song here, because they sing about various big cities around the world (London, Bangkok, Tokyo, San Francisco, New York, etc.) which isn't what I really want to hear in prog rock. Luckily the rest of the album is much better, concluding in the ever wonderful "Tunnel". Though not my favorite prog album in my collection, it's still well deserving as a prog classic, and of your prog collection, and if you like such French prog bands as Ange, you're sure to love this.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Synth on a Plinth on June 13, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Wonderful theatric-syle French prog with Moog synths, soaring guitar solos, strange sound effects, and a good degree of musical vituosity.
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