Ivan Jacquin 2024

Future Days

Gloomy, albeit engaging, look at the edge of our existence’s event horizon where unwanted possibilities lie in wait.

It’s easy to let this ensemble’s name pass the listener by, but even a cursory glance at the tracklist of “Future Days” will reveal the album’s concept, with “Rage!” and “Colère” bolstered with the latter’s French version after a finale – which is par for the course for Ivan Jacquin’s dystopian vision offered here. Veering between heavy prog and prog metal, with various stylistic passages adding variety to their anger-fueled arrangements, the Bourgogne-Franche-Comté’s multi-instrumentalist and his guests paint a series of grippingly grim vistas where lyrics are not as important as melodies that weave in and out of focus due to their unevenness, while the overall sonic approach should find a fertile ground for imagination.

It may not get more evocative than on the histrionic intro of “Warning” with Jacquin’s exhorting over the heady, though delicate, mélange of cinematic ivories’ lines and serrated six-string riffs which are wrapped around an anxious throb before the drift is sped up for Ivan’s unhurried rapping, with Jeannick Valleur joining in for choruses, and Olivier Gaudet’s deranged guitars to increase emotional degree of the proceedings. With keyboards waves and electronica elevating “Don’t Want” to a discotheque level – a groove that will be revisited rather vigorously, if briefly, on “I Wanna Dance” further on – and Ingrid Denis’s voice contrasting the leader’s vocals, in turn growling and clear, pressure and simmering grow until roaring organ and rumbling bass emphasize folk-tinctured despair, so palpable on “Wrath” in Greg Giraudo’s English delivery. However, whereas “Even If I Bleed” sees Jacquin accompany Amanda Lehmann’s descent into epic, yet harmonically lighted, gloom, “Ambient” embraces an elegiac pulse of cosmic scope, only to bring on “Turn” for a blistering bout of dynamically-driven hysterics, and take spoken word to the fore of “On Earth” to have all three chanteuses pour the milk of human kindness into Ivan and Derek Sherinian’s synthesizers panorama.

So when “Procession” ties it all together for a solemn, vibrant finale, there’s a glimpse of hope, which is good… but does it bode well for the project bearing such a name?


May 19, 2024

Category(s): Reviews
Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *