Ataraxia - Mon seul desir - 2002


The disaster of September 2001 and different literary references have been the inspiration for Ataraxia´s new CD. After talking about lost civilizations, pilgrims, and exotic places in previous albums, this time love is the thematic of "Mon seul desir", not a simplistic vision of love but love in a more deep and metaphysical way.


This album is artistically influenced by "La Dame à la Licorne", a cycle of late-mediaeval tapestries collected in the Mediaeval Museum of Cluny (France), "The Canticle of Canticles", supposedly written by King Salomón, and the texts of greek female poet Sappho. I haven´t seen the tapestries but I´ve read "The Canticle..." and I recommend it because it is a wonderful allegory of human love. I also recommend the reading of classic Greek authors, because too much Tolkien is not good for health.

As always, the band´s lineup is formed by Francesca Nicoli (vocals, flute, cymbals), Vittorio Vandelli (mediaeval, acoustic and electric guitars, vocals), Giovanni Pagliari (keyboards, piano), and Francesco Banchini (percussion, vocals).

Well... it´s all right if "Mon seul desir" is a conceptual CD. based on love, but the listener can´t notice that concept in the music; in other words, the CD. consists of six different and separate tracks, with Love´s topic as background. So this CD. is not a "Lost Atlantis" or a "Sueños". Moreover, forty minutes are few minutes for such a great band. I know, we were used to receive one Ataraxia album yearly, but the CD. is too short. Besides, the band plays a new version of "Mundus est iocundum", included in "Historiae", longer and recorded in studio but it is not a significant novelty. The rest of the tracks are good but that´s not sufficient.


Don´t misunderstand my words, "Mon seul desir" is not a bad CD. -in fact it´s very good- but it doesn´t reach the high level of masterpieces such as "Lost Atlantis" or "Sueños". Even short duration CD's such as "Orlando" or "The moon sang on the April chair" maintain a more compact conceptual line than this CD. Anyway, a minor CD. by Ataraxia contains quality enough for guaranteeing a good listening and I must eulogize a band that releases a yearly CD. (yeah, a 70´s attitude) while other bands release mediocre works each two-three years.

author - date - rating - label

Alfonso Algora - February 2002 -   - Cruel Moon[Cold Meat Industry]