Neo - s/t. 1980 France

Neo - s/t. 1980 Prodisc

CD reissues: 1997 Musea; 2009 MALS (Russia)

LP reissue: 1985 Omega Studio

Release details: Apparently the idea with the Neo album is to change the colors with each release! The colors above are true, as I've owned the last two myself (though the Omega Studio version is more pinkish than the scan above). Originals are very scarce but not expensive as demand is low. Omega Studio was a neat little label in the mid 80s who issued on LP a few cool items from Wapassou, WLUD, Serge Bringholf, and this album. It was this version that introduced me to the album sometime in the late 1980s. Musea completed the reissue cycle with a fine CD, with detailed historical notes and two good bonus tracks. Given the quality of the CD, I felt no need to hold onto the LP reissue. A decision I'd still make today. The MALS reissue is fully licensed from Musea, and is likely the only copy you will find easily as the Musea version has long disappeared from the shelves.

Notes: The all-instrumental Neo play a style of hard hitting symphonic fusion, mixed with lighter jazz rock touches. The guitarist absolutely smokes on this record, while the saxophone provides much of the melody lines. Keyboards play a strong role in the overall atmosphere. 'Osibirsk' opens the album in pulverizing fashion. Presuming you can still sit up after that, the album has plenty more rewards, most notably the 10+ minute 'Sortie de Bain'. Neo are yet another example of the fertile French scene during this era, and will appeal to fans of Terpendre, Transit Express, Metabolisme, and Rahmann.

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