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HAQIBATT - L'Electronique Des Songes - ALBUM REVIEW


L'Electronique Des Songes

Strasbourg, France

Credit - Bartosch Salmanski

When it comes to funk and groove electro, the French really know what they are doing evidenced nicely by Strasbourg, France duo Haqibatt. Their latest release, which was shared with the world on the fifteenth of November 2022, features 6 months of work, whereby this amazing duo come together and redefined what it meant to be Haqibatt and what that means when focussing on the Electro-Jazz-Groove vision. This Duo made up of Selma Doyen, on piano and percussion, and Christophe Piquet, on bass and sampling, has managed to build something utterly unique in their latest release.

This wonderfully titled release, ‘L'Electronique des Songes’, or for those English-speaking readers that didn’t get the chance to study French in school ‘The Electronics of dreams’, is an awesome six-track album, featuring twists, turns, joy and the feeling of the need to move and dance. With the longest playing track sitting at 9:46 and the shortest being at 7:07, be prepared to be taken on a journey of sound.

Kicking things off we are introduced to ‘La Quête des Palmipèdes’ which nicely translates as ‘The Quest of the Waterfowl’. In this, the feel of the album is really delivered with high-use piano and some gorgeously deep base. This is delivered with a beautifully upbeat rhythm with the piano piece being a gorgeous subtle continuous throughout as claps are brought into play along with some perfectly tempered high hats. As this track progresses, we are introduced to some gorgeous key twinkles, building almost a feeling of urgency within the listener.

This upbeat piece is in direct contrast to the next track ‘Cyclostorm’. In this track, we are introduced to a calm slow but rhythmic beat, but again provided those beautifully strong keys in the forefront of everything that is done. This is the track where I feel the funk really comes out to play, with the bass providing an attractive and subtle twang. With another nice clap beat and amazing twinkle sound, the track drops, before dropping in with a full funk-style sound.

As this moves on into track number three ‘Watten Walzer’ we are taken on a journey of confusing and sensory overloading sounds. With off-key piano playing, a bass that seems to be playing its own tune and a beat that is out of touch with the other instruments we are left in a sense of wonder as to what is happening. As the track continues it is almost as if the sounds begin to come together, and rather than sounding like an off-key music box, we are provided with a sound that gives the feel of predator and prey, very much a deep feel of nature here. While the beat becomes much more in tune and the beat becomes more electro in nature.

As we reach track four and the longest on the album we reach ‘Recto Verso’, nicely translating as ‘On the right side’. This track is more groove-filled over the funk of the previous track and can certainly have you up and moving in no time. With there still being a gorgeous funk-style bass there is more of a grove-style beat, but the key presence is still strong. With that previously experienced twinkle being at the forefront of the track's delivery and the beat taking a backseat. This track is really where the bass shines and the talent of Christophe is shown to us.

This flows through to the penultimate track on the album ‘Les doutes de l'heure bleue’, or again translated to ‘The doubts of the blue hour’. This track begins with a gorgeous build-up of keys, with bass slowly and subtly increasing in the background and a beautiful bass drum comes out from the shadows, to build into another sound explosion, taking the listener on an electro rampage. The percussion in this brings with it another element of what could be considered a triangle at different pitches which adds a great artistic element to this track.

This nicely leads us to the final track on this album ‘Moontains’. This track begins with fewer twinkle keys but more serious style synth keys, which quickly comes to the end with the introduction of eerie contrasting high-pitch keys. This is coupled with a gorgeous groove bass and beat, which is the complete opposite of the keys and their delivery. As the track progresses the eerie keys remain but the bass takes a more dominant position, with it framing the eerie into a beautiful funk sound.

This is a sound sensation. The sensory play is amazing, and the talent shines through in its ability to combine simple yet effective instrumentation to create something extremely unique.


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