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Release Info: COS-PASIONES, LP, 1982, BELGIUM
More total irresistibility from this Belgian art rock institution who started life in the spirit of Canterbury jazz rock and the airier side of Zeuhl, adopted a disco-prog stance circa Babel that was insanely delicious and then zig -zagged off for a pop prog rebirth with a largely new line-up (save founder/leader Daniel Schell and drummer Philippe Allaert) that was fronted by another powerhouse vocalist in the person of one Ilona Chale. Filling the shoes of Pascale Son and her goosebump-inducing airy Northette-isms (one of the defining characteristics of Cos' earlier period) is no mean feat, but Chale, who looks like Zooey Deschanel and sounds like Dagmar Krause, was a long time operator within the Belgian avant prog landscape, having appeared in a guest capacity on albums by Aksak Maboul, Univers Zero, Nuit Caline A La Villa Mon Reve and Julverne as well as appearing on the V/A-Noises LP I posted recently, and she commandingly fils Son's shoes on this and the following Cos EP (the previously posted Hotel Atlantic), her presence here (along with a line-up shift abandoning keys and with Schell shifting from guitar to Chapman Stick) having helped usher in a tone of eccentric new wave-y pop polish with overtones of The Honeymoon Killers, most curious as Marc Hollander of HK was the original keyboardist for Cos, but was out of the band by this point. Pasiones represented the first step toward their reconfiguration as the super suave Mathematiques Modernes style electropop band that can be heard on Hotel Atlantic, but this one's a thing of beauty too, successfully riding the mid-ground between subtle prog sophistication and seductive new wave pop charm.
Note: links have been removed as I somehow missed that this album (along with Viva Boma and Postaolien Train Robbery) is available via Mindawn
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