Classification – Progressive Pop (2004)
Before listening to this album I imagined the balance of Vigroux / Evett would throw up a heady jazz mix. So nothing prepared me for the extrordinary balance of music thrown up by the colaboration of two artists at diverse ends of the fretless spectrum. Just like sweet and sour, Ned and Franck’s magnetic interaction pull them to a very special musical place.
Most songs here were improvised in the studio, too late to wish to be a fly on the wall, but we do have some pictures from the session following this review. The CD was engineered by Carlos Duarte at the Digitruc studio in Paris and a lot of credit should go to Carlos for a fine clean piece of work.
Track One – Je Me Suis Noyé; Lovely ambient mix of spoken strands (in French & English) with fretless guitar. Stunning theremin type intro followed by some great slide style work.
Track Two – Doc Hannah’s Blues; Almost delta blues with some very interesting guitar effects.
Track Three – Submarines; With a bass vocal as deep as whale excrement, and some bass sounds that ruthelessly shook the studio monitors.
Track Four -Burning Man; Nice work from Franck here bowing his fretless at the start, echoes of Johnny Lydon’s Burn Hollywood Burn.
Track Five – Frosty Roostertail; This envelopes you in cotton wool and whispers in your ear; call in work and tell them your sick, wrap your self up in the duvet and stay warm and comfortable all day.
Track Six – Never stayed in One Place; Quite the stand out track, a huanting little melody with nice acoustic work from Franck, Ned’s vocals are the best I’ve heard, one for the greatest hits CD.
Track Seven – My comfortable bed; Definately a late night piece, concludes with some very bizarre bass vocalisations.
Track Eight – Oh No; I swear there there is a kazoo at the start but maybe I need my ears cleaning out, did I hear that line right? “Duck’s Butthole” ??? No its definately a kazoo.
Track Nine – Radio de Poche; Franck’s loops are all over the place on this one, like tuning in to some manic radio station transmitted from the first French outpost on Jupiter.
Track Ten – Over Me; Simple dreamy interaction of vocals and guitar.
Track Eleven – Albatross; Now I’ve heard this one before, it sounds very familiar, bookends to the piece are a rather fine atmostpheric drive in what sound’s like a vintage Renault 6. (Albatross morphed itself into the track “Token Hearted” on Ned Evett’s i-Stole. – Ed.)
In conclusion, an interesting and promising mix of two fine artists, nicely laid back in places but with hints of a higher inner tension, imagine a big compressed spring waiting to be released, set on a hair trigger. Would really love to see these guys perform live. That’s why I’m eagarly waiting to hear the next colaboration between Ned and Franck, hopefully being recorded October 2004. (which did not come to fruition)