Artist: Poésie Noire
Title: Sense Of Purpose
Genre: Electro / New Wave / Gothic
Release Date: 1st October 2010
Label: Electric Body Records
POÉSIE NOIRE was formed in the ‘80s, initially as Electro Wave but their urge for change meant a more prolific nature so their approaches to music slipped out of easily predictable patterns. Just to follow the trajectory of their development they took on influences of FRONT 242 and THE NEON JUDGEMENT and morphed it through “the poppy side” into electronic pop to well, pop itself. A band member Herman Gillis is credited as an inventor of "Sherman Filterbank", an electronics-device that was used in recordings of acts such as CHEMICAL BROTHERS, MADONNA and others. They used to produce their music themselves under different alias such as "Taste of Sugar", "Erotic Dissidents", "Secrets of China" and so on. The turn to the pop would be misleading to say that it was the usual offering of the genre. This is a band who describes its main drive as “best of existential despair, metaphysical distress, ontological undulation and cosmic meltdown”. One can of course expect this from their name which means ‘Black Poetry’. In the early 90’s they’ve disbanded and three members of POÉSIE NOIRE’s original line up revived the band again and released a come-back album ‘Sense Of Purpose’.
There is much of the ‘80’s feel regarding the music and even the vocal approach still present on the new album albeit given with contemporary instruments and pushed through modern reconstruction, which co-existence is interesting even if you’ve missed the older era’s music. It’s also worthy to note how much lyrics add to the creation of the mood and listening experience because without them the music of POÉSIE NOIRE would be not as remarkable as it is with their quality. They feel as another instrument that adds to the feeling of completion. The atmosphere and the beat are often hypnotic, you’ll have to either give in to them or keep trying to retrieve yourself from their pull. The song that demonstrates all these points the best is ‘We’ll die dancing’, mesmerizing beat and instrumentation, atmospheric and strange, they put you into a chair and make you watch a De Sadesque creation of putting your immoral morals on the hot spot. They sing “we are doomed” but you feel it is you who is so. They won’t stop at pulling and pushing your psyche there and when they do so they give you no quarter in avoiding looking at it.
From ‘Choosers’ you’ll hear: “whatever you choose you always regret [sic] dreams and premonitions something to take off the edge, reality be so hard in the middle of your heart... suicide in the morning... your God given right... suddenly hits you, take what you can get... choosers will be beggars anywhere... do you feel like a machine malfunctions in abundance... it’s too late... you’re no saint that’s who you are, the rope around your neck is a little step for men” comes at you from next song. Add examination of many nihilistic thoughts / attitudes to their credo as well. The refrain reminds me of ANYTHING BUT THE GIRL. It is danceable and somehow sad even if its beat is uplifting. ‘Dream One’ emphatically pictures the fractured and alienated, atomized world of today.
Day-dreamy danceability comes from the album as a whole in fact. Some songs alleviate the pressure and aren’t as serious or hard hitting so it’s not just a monochrome journey of darkness and gloom. There are the Pop tunes, some Ambient and Industrial, Drum & Bass elements. To sum it up - ‘Sense Of Purpose’ is a multi faceted and interesting album where you’ll find enough to take from it and whatever you will you can be sure that it’ll be worth it. The dated sense might detract some but on repeated plays they might realize that it’s misleading and find it fitting with the music. If you take it out its essence would just be incising the vital organ and leaving the body of music for dead. POÉSIE NOIRE comes back in style and makes one wonder what will follow next. It could be anything...
01. The Air - 3.46
02. Hangman - 4.02
03. Eureka - 4.07
04. We'll Die Dancing - 4.17
05. Choosers - 5.20
06. Dream One - 3.25
07. The Radio Plays - 3.38
08. Die Sonne - 4.05
09. Forget The Unforgettable - 3.56
10. Uncertain Smile 2010 - 3.24
Marianne Valvekens - Vocals, lyrics
Herman Gillis - Guitars, Filterbank, Restyler, Fretless Bass
Jo Casters - Every other instrument included
http://www.poesienoire.com/ / http://www.myspace.com/posienoire
Total: 8.5 / 10