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La Revolution Francaise - C.Cool

La Revolution Francaise - C.Cool

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Genre: psych
Rating: 3 stars ***
Title:  C Cool
Company: CANUSA
Catalog: CLJ-33-112
Year: 1968
Country/State: Montreal, Canada
Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+
Comments: minor ring and edge wear
Available: 1
Catalog ID: 5651
Price: $100.00

Best time to play: late Saturday nights when you aren't paying all that much attention

Singer Francois Guy quit Les Sinners in October,1968. His next move was to form La Revolution Francaise with fellow Sinners guitar player Jean-Guy Cossette, bassist Georges Marchant, and drummer Louis Parizeau. Signed by singer/producer Tony Roman's small CANUSA label the group debuted with the 1968 single ' Pierre-Paul Ladouceaur' b/w 'Isabelle' (CANUSA catalog number C 372).

The single sold well enough for CANUSA to finance a supporting album - 1968's "C. Cool". Produced by drummer Parizeau, the set showcased Guy in the role of front man, handling lead vocals and responsible for all of the material. Compared to the Les Sinners catalog these tracks were clearly an attempt to adapt to changing audience tastes. While the first side wasn't exactly lysergic drenched wildness, it was clearly more experimental than previous releases, tracks like 'Et La Terre Tournera' incorporating a tasty hard rock edge while retaining the earlier group's commercial sound. Even conventional ballads like 'Coule L'Amour' and the Baroque-tinged 'Pierre-Paul Ladouceaur' reflected a modest psychy feel complete with pounding keyboards and drifty, acid influenced atmospherics. Yeah, 'Bingo' was little more than a studio throwaway, but having one loser on side one wasn't a major crime. The side long title track was a different story. Set against strumming acoustic guitars with occasional sound effects, isolated electric guitar runs, and even a sitar interlude, the song featured a weird, meandering mixture of spoken word narratives and isolated song fragments. Guy sounded pretty intense (or perhaps simply stoned). Anyone out there who speaks French want to enlighten me on what was going on? Certainly weird and not something you were likely to want to hear on a regular basis. By the way all six songs were performed in French.  

- 'Et La Terre Tournera' opened the album with a fascinating slice of folk-rock-meets-garage-attitude. Kicked along by Louis Parizeau's pounding drums and Jean-Guy Cossette's excellent guitar, the song had an instantly mesmerizing melody. rating: **** stars
- A pretty ballad with a slight lysergic edge, 'Coule L'Amour' was one of those tracks that grew on you with time. rating: *** stars
- With a very Beatlesque flavor including Georges Marchant's Paul McCartney-styled bass and some heavily orchestrated segments, 'Pierre-Paul Ladouceaur' found the band going full-tilt psychedelic. Nice vocal from Francois Guy. rating: **** stars
- 'Ta Famille' found the band returning to a simpler, pop orientation. As much as I liked their more elaborate efforts, they were at their best on power-pop tracks like this one. rating: **** stars
- In contrast, 'Bingo' found the band seemingly falling victim to the desire to appeal to grandmothers ... Seriously, talk about sickenly sweet ... yech. rating: ** stars
- Showcasing a nice acoustic riff guitar from Cossette, the side long title track started out as a pretty enough ballad, with a strident edge (guess Guy and company were trying to make some sort of statement here), but to a large extent the results sounded like an in-studio demo that simply wasn't ready for prime time. Things started to go off the tracks when the sitar solo kicked in, along with the extended spoken work segment. The sitar was actually quite entertaining, but boy did it sound lost amidst the rest of the song. From there the song sounded like an acid trip gone astray with all kinds of craziness going on, including a brief English segment that sounded like a Simon and Garfunkel outtake. Maybe that was the intent ... who knows. To be honest, I wish I knew what this one was about which might help alleviate some of it's boredom factor. rating: *** stars

All told it did hold up very well against Les Sinners catalog, but they'll be some folks out there who enjoy the album's quirkier aspects.

"C Cool" track listing:
(side 1)
1.) Et La Terre Tournera (Francois Guy) - 
2.) Coule L'Amour (Francois Guy) - 
3.) Pierre-Paul Ladouceaur (Francois Guy) - 
4.) Ta Famille (Francois Guy) - 
5.) Bingo (Francois Guy) - 

(side 2)
1.) C. Cool (Francois Guy) - 

Guy and company then ended their relationship with CANUSA, taking the then-rare step of setting up their own Revolution and releasing their own follow-up single:

- 1968's 'C-Cool' b/w 'Et La Terre Tournera' (Revolution catalog number R-2003)
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