French band Odessey & Oracle's debut album is a wonderfully inventive example of baroque pop.
Taking their name from The Zombies 1968 cult album, Odessey & Oracle embrace the spirit of 60s psychedelia and experimentalism through a particularly ornate musical styling often referred to as baroque pop.
By no means an attempt to replicate 60s psychedlia, their music is instead influenced by the optimism and expressive freedom of that era. Their music draws its influences from a broad spectrum: from early classical music (medieval, baroque, renaissance) through to contemporary electronic music and is expressed through expansive and sophisticated arrangments featuring instruments ancient (viola da gamba, baroque cello, flute) and modern (electric pianos, Dobro, banjo, analog synthesizers).
In the process of recording their first album, Odessey & Oracle drew on the support of a dozen musician friends who recorded vocals and instrumental parts giving birth to a speculative band called The Casiotone Orchestra (hence the album title).
Comparisons have been made with the music of The Left Banke, Brian Wilson, Robert Wyatt and the High Llamas.
"One of the most original sound creations of French music in recent years."
- Gianfranco Marmoro, Ondarock (IT)
"...with the grace of Sebastian Bach, inspired by medieval sounds and instruments of old (viola da gamba) as well as contemporary (synths)."
- Les Inrockuptibles (FR)
"...in a magical and enchanting universe, the vocal harmonies are sublime, the arrangements are incredibly rich and with each listen they manage to surprise."
- Almost Famous (FR)
"The music is sinuous, atmoshperic, psychedelic, and heavily baroque spaced out pop that I reckon you will be wanting to listen to more than once. It sounds like classic American and British psych filtered through a French lens...I recommend this one."
- J. Moss, The Modern Folk of America (US)
"Wide-eyed, accomplished, orchestrated and in love with an era that deserves the attention, Odessey & Oracle and the Casiotone Orchestras are not only a fun addition to the baroque-pop canon, but a great reminder of what made that scene so special."
- Edward Charlton, Clicky Clicky Music Blog (US)
Odessey & Oracle are:
Fanny L’HÉRITIER : lead vocals, baroque cello and electromechanical piano
Alice BAUDOIN : electric harpsichord, analog synths, recorders and vocals
Guillaume MÉDIONI : guitar, dobro resonator guitar, banjo, viola da gamba and vocals