Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Jacques Berrocal - Parallèles (1977)

Debut solo album by French avant-gardist and multiple-horn skronker Jac(ques) Berrocal.  This is the one with the original Rock 'N' Roll Station, memorably covered by Nurse With Wound in 1994.  Back in 1976, Berrocal got on his bike (in the studio, to record the sounds of it as an instrument) and left the words to British rock 'n' roll singer Vince Taylor, whose biggest audience had always been in mainland Europe since his 60s peak.  The result, accompanied by a pedaling bass note, was five minutes of surrealist brilliance - 18 years later, Stapleton would even name his album after it.

Elsewhere on Parallèles, there's a sample of the free jazz improvisations on trumpet, trombone, cornet and more that Berrocal and his main collaborators Roger Ferlet and Michel Potage were playing at the time.  One track, Post-Card, adds guitar and a spoken-word part, and was apparently recorded in a pigsty.

Lastly, the side-long Bric-a-Brac (To Russolo) adds some more free-improv acquaintances on cello, bass, piano and several more horns.  Towards the end, that static bassline from Rock 'N' Roll Station comes back in, as do elements of its lyrics, among other things that intrude hilariously into an English-language biographical note of Luigi Russolo.
original LP cover


  1. Thank you for this. I really enjoy your blog because of the wide range of interesting music, some of which I have not had a chance to hear despite being a persistent seeker of new (to me) music. Also a few gems like the Alvin Lucier are LPs I used to own but somehow lost in my many moves, and I'm grateful for the chance to recover them.

    I've been linking to your blog for almost a year and I hope you're getting some traffic despite the mostly different musical material. Good luck!


    1. Many thanks Richard. The more musical variety the better as far as I'm concerned, and I'm certainly partial to a bit of Indian classical - have added your blog to my list so that everyone who drops by here can benefit too.

      cheers, ALan

  2. I really like your blog,thanks for sharing this.


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