Friday, 20 February 2015

La Bête du Gévaudan (Sens, 1999)

First of all, Sens and Saens are the same group, as this French band added an "e" to their name after their first release, the one this track comes from. That CD, "Les regrets d'Isidore D." ("Isidore D.'s Regrets", that's to say) is also the only one sung in French. "La Bête du Gévaudan" actually is the longest and more adventurous track from Sens' debut album, a progressive tour-de-force featuring a series of surprising contrasts. Intense, up tempo passages and deep, nocturnal parts, tricky rhythmic patterns and a rather theatrical voice are but a few of the things you'll find in this epic.

Sens / Saens are one of the most original French bands of their era.

Saens (I beg your pardon... Sens) surely aren't afraid to explore different genres and unexpected solutions, so this is an ever changing piece of music, even if it's also a fully enjoyable one. About the lyrics, now. The Gévaudan's Beast was a mysterious wild animal - most likely a very big wolf - that haunted the Southern France Region of Gévaudan between 1764 and 1767, causing one of the greatest colective huntings ever. A very good topic for a prog song, isn't it? Saens will find other ways in the following albums, but this song, IMHO, is a milestone in their career.