Boomkat Product Review:
Previously unreleased, the three tracks on Pays Noir come from recording sessions held at the same time as those for the cult No Man's Land produced by Jef Gilson in 1976, and published on vinyl by Souffle Continu Records in 2017.
"Singled out at the time of its release by Actuel, Rock & Folk and Melody Maker, the tabula rasa of No Man's Land is the result of free-flowing experiments born of chance, if the two musicians are to be believed. Indeed, their approach to free improvisation was uninfluenced by those in the know of what was going on in such circles, which makes it even more incredible! To emphasise the point, the saxophonist Evan Parker (already a leader in the field) remarked on the album at the time, surprised by the innovation of the two Frenchmen!
Brimming with the same fervour as No Man's Land, mainly on guitar and drums (but once again, not only…), Jean-François Pauvros and Gaby Bizien invent an amazing unbridled chaos of instinctive combinations, which are the fruit of their immense complicity, born of days on end playing together, trying to transform the rebelliousness of rock into free-form sparks unlike anything heard before, and which are often poetic – ah, that final song!
Carried along by the frenzied clatter of Gaby Bizien, Jean-François Pauvros emerges without doubt as one the great French improvising guitarists, alongside Gérard Marais (Dharma Quintet, Stu Martin Trio), Joseph Dejean (Cohelmec Ensemble, The Full Moon Ensemble), Raymond Boni (who, like Pauvros and Bizien, is present on the Nurse With Wound list), Dominique Répécaud, Noël Akchoté and Jean-Marc Montera. Furthermore, the duo has a crazy intensity heard only on recordings by Bill Orcutt / Chris Corsano, Arto Lindsay / Paal Nilssen-Love, Thurston Moore / John Moloney and Mesa Of The Lost Women!
A kind of French no wave ahead of its time!"