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Live crescendo

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Album Review

Motis' first live album documents the trio's performance at the Crescendo International Progressive Rock Festival, held in Saint-Palais-sur-Mer, France, in August 2007. It is a rather crude and unforgiving live recording, possibly nothing more than a soundboard recording with no reworking afterward. However, despite a few wrong notes and a couple of belated entries, Emmanuel Tissot, Florent Tissot, and Rémy Diaz deliver a convincing performance. Each musician plays several instruments, and this multi-instrumentalism is a key element in the group's medieval-prog approach. Half of the set list is taken from the then-current album L'Homme-Loup, with "Les Normands" and "La Trahison" standing out, while the drama is missing from "La Dame et le Dragon," suffering from a lack of togetherness. The other pieces come from Motis' self-productions, going all the way back to their 2000 debut, À Chacun Son Graal. The title track from that CD and "Les Messagers" are this live set's highlights. Slowly, Motis are growing into one of France's best medieval rock groups since Malicorne and Tri Yann. This live album is geared toward the fans. One hopes that Motis will have the opportunity to record a better-sounding live album, because they clearly have an interesting on-stage energy. Meanwhile, newcomers should start with L'Homme-Loup, their most mature work to date, before checking out this live set. ~ François Couture, Rovi

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