Clear Light Symphony

Artist: Clearlight
Label: Virgin
Catalog#: V 2029
Format: Vinyl
Country: United Kingdom
Released: 1975-03
A Clear Light Symphony Part. 1 20:12

Bass [Synthesized] - Cyrille Verdeaux
Electric Guitar - Steve Hillage
Engineer - David Vorhaus
Saxophone [Tenor] - Didier Malherbe
Synthesizer [Vcs3], Percussion, Engineer - Tim Blake

B Clear Light Symphony Part. 2 20:35

Bass - Martin Isaacs
Drums, Vibraphone, Percussion [C.n.d.p.] - Gilbert Artman
Electric Guitar - Christian Boulé
Engineer - Simon Heyworth
Gong - Cyrille Verdeaux


Artwork By [Front Cover Painting] - Jean Claude Michel
Co-producer [Supervisor] - Claire Lait
Management - Jacques Reland
Producer - Tim Blake
Producer, Mixed By - Simon Heyworth
Producer, Mixed By, Grand Piano, Organ, Mellotron, Composed By, Arranged By - Cyrille Verdeaux


Track A recorded and mixed at Kaleidophon Studios
Track B recorded at the Manor
Tim Blake, Steve Hillage & Didier Malherbe courtesy of C.O.I.T.
Gilbert Artman courtesy of Vamp Records.
Published by Virgin Music (Publishers) Ltd.
Distribution C.P.F.
"Special thanks to Emmanuelle Lopez, Francis Maudin, Bruno Verdeaux, Simon Draper, Marie Odile Briot, Anne De Coulombes, Patricia Coaquette and Gong for their hospitality."

Strawberry Bricks Entry: 
Along with a host of guests from the French progressive scene, Cyrille Verdeaux recorded a series of albums under the umbrella of Clearlight. The Paris-born keyboardist had a formal musical education at Conservatoire de Paris, and this experience certainly shaped his compositions. Signed to Virgin Records in the wake of Tubular Bells' success, the similarities between Mike Oldfield and Clearlight are purely topical: If Oldfield represented a folksy, hippie vibe, then Clearlight was the opposite—the French sophisticate. As its title suggests, Symphony is indeed a large-scale concerto, and one of the earliest works that truly earns the description "symphonic." On one side of the album, guitarist Christian Boulé and drummer Gilbert Artman, the latter the leader of Lard Free, aid Verdeaux. Propelled by the rhythm section of Artman and bassist Martin Isaacs, Verdeaux's excellent keyboard work favors piano and Mellotron. His composition hints at minimalism and jazz, but the work is far denser, driven by massive motifs and rich instrumentation. The other side of the album features a drum-less piece recorded at Virgin's The Manor Studio with Gong members Steve Hillage, Didier Malherbe and Tim Blake; the latter also shared production duties. There's more openness to this side, with Blake's synthesizer lending a cosmic edge. Guided by piano, the piece rolls through each section's theme with intensity and a modicum of weirdness (something I always like). Yet with Verdeaux's work ultimately rooted in composition and the classics, the side ends in a resplendent finale. The album saw release in 1975, almost a year after it was recorded. In between, Verdeaux hosted the psychedelic Delired Chameleon Family album, a soundtrack for the Pierre Clémenti film, Visa de censure no. X.
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