Epic, Neo, Rasping vocals, Theatrical
""Frat3r" marks Galaad's smashing return to the forefront of the progressive music scene and is a must for 2019."
CALGEPO (14.06.2019)  
(0) opinions from our readers (3) comment(s)

I'm talking about a time that people under 20 can't know about. Switzerland at that time had a band of neo prog who succeeded in magnifying a style that was seeking to renew itself. Two albums, one of which is rightly described by a large majority of columnists and listeners as a masterpiece ("Vae Victis"), and then leaves, worn out by the fatigue and emotional wave that followed this album. The vertigo of the follow-up to give to this album associated with the will of each one to build his own life were the source of the extinction of the band. It took nearly 23 years to see Galaad return to the forefront! 276 months of frustrating absence for aficionados, between heavy silence, crazy rumours of return and failed attempts at rebirth. 

Nevertheless, some of the members of the band did not remain inactive during this period, notably Pierre-Yves Theurillat who, through the Escouade ("Confidences de Mouche") and alone ("Carnet d'un Visage de Pluie" and "Mon Grand Amer"), produced magnificent intimate and personal albums. These occasions could also be experienced as a call to his former fellow travellers to revive the group, especially since for his solo albums, Sébastien Froidevaux, the late Galaad's guitarist, supported him with all his undeniable melodic quality. By dint of conviction and heart, like two colliding flints, the spark caused by these projects has finally rekindled the not completely extinguished flame of the Swiss band in order to forge this new album so long awaited by fans and amateurs of neo prog that is "Frat3r".

To mention this album by comparing it with the previous one cannot guide these lines even if the common point between the two is the one of fraternity and humanism that emerges from these two albums, without the warrior side for "Frat3r". The rage and ardour of the youth that was previously present has given way to a more philosophical and reflective vision of these values. 

The music follows the theme with introspective phases illustrated by long keyboards magnificently highlighted throughout this album thanks to a very beautiful production. "Stone", the album's anthology track, is the most beautiful testimony to this with this instrumental bridge that recalls the most brilliant genes movements as an echo of Tony Banks' talent. The final cover, embellished with Sébastien's fantastic guitar touch and Pierre-Yves' inhabited vocals, infuses an epic and dramatic side to the thrill.  

If the band has left aside the spontaneous aspect of its first years of work, it is to better structure its tracks today, demonstrating that despite this long absence, Galaad appears even more melodic and cohesive than ever. "La Machine" which opens the album catches the listener with a sample of an excerpt from a radio newspaper that installs the disturbing theme (a foot call to Pink Floyd's "Welcome To The Machine"). The track increases in power until the final instrumental fervour where Sébastien's Rothery style melodic solos explodes. Throughout this musical journey, the listener passes through the refusal of fraternal abandonment ('Kim') in the form of a deep ballad, the hymn of love in the Jura ('Justice') or the most sincere recognition ('Merci puR') in which Galaad dares Indian themes that prove its openness to the world.

In all the titles, each instrument has a balanced space of expression that includes Pierre-Yves' more raspy and aged singing, which, although it no longer has the same vista as before, gains in expressiveness, highlighting and enhancing lyrics that have lost none of their superb and poetic quality. It is also impossible to resist the pleasure of hearing Gerard's purring bass, especially in "Encore !" or this precise and varied rhythmic ("Justice"). 

Galaad is back in the spotlight again that they should never have left. While it is still too early to measure the impact of this album on the band's discography, "Frat3r" is undeniably a touching album of immense quality that illustrates the motto: "all for one and one for all! " so much the weight of the years has not affected the Jura combo's team. Let's hope it is the new foundation stone of an even bigger building to come and that it won't take so many years to enjoy a fourth album.  

More informations on

01. La Machine
02. Moloch
03. Kim
04. Stone
05. Justice
06. Merci puR
07. Encore!
08. Frater

Gérard Zuber: Basse
Gianni Giardiello: Claviers
Laurent Petermann: Batterie
Pierre-yves Theurillat: Chant
Sebastien Froidevaux: Guitares / Choeurs
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(3) COMMENT(S)    
Je viens de rencontrer ce groupe musical et j'ai été surpris par la qualité de leur musique. Ses tonalités, son tempo et ses accords me font penser que cette musique aurait bien pu être l'évolution logique du groupe Ange en référence aux premiers albums de ces derniers. Tres bien pour Galaad...
Décidément, j'ai du mal avec mon clavier qui envoie trop vite mes réponses ;-(,
Bref je disais que je consulte régulièrement "Music Waves". Amateur de musiques progressives, notamment Marillion époque Fish et IQ, ainsi que les premiers Arena , la chronique avait attiré mon regard et mon écoute. Je me plongerai davantage dans ce dernier opus en espérant y trouver une satisfaction et un engouement plus vifs. Bien cordialement et musicalement...
Bonjour Élie, merci pour ton commentaire qui apporte de la vie à la chronique. Justice est l'un des titres les plus directs avec mercipuR. Les autres sont beaucoup plus denses dont deux avec une belle progressivité. Après reste la voix à laquelle on adhère ou pas. A bientôt. Musicalement.
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