Souffle Continu

DHARMA - Archipel

Souffle Continu Records present the first ever reissue of Dharmas Archipel, originally released in 1973. Do your own music!" was Albert Aylers advice, received loud and clear in France. Cohelmec Ensemble, Workshop de Lyon, and the Dharma Quintet, three groups close in spirit, which would each illustrate, in their own way, a local principle: to get some distance from American free jazz. As far as Dharma is concerned, the community-based approach was put in place to escape from any academism. This may draw comparisons with the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians, but they were also influenced by Gong. The events of May 68 were fresh, and protest was still in the air: no leadership structure was possible, and personnel could change with each recording (on Archipel, a new drummer makes an appearance; however, there is no recorded trace of the group with Jean Querlier and François Méchali). Like its predecessor End Starting (FFL 040LP), Archipel is a constructed album, mixing free rock and European free jazz in a series of collective explosions based on abrupt and contrasting improvisations. For much of the time, piano, guitar, and saxophone intertwine over intense rhythms, with everything and anything being electrified. Retrospectively, such remarkable timbral combinations, evoking sometimes the freer passages of Cinemascope by Joachim Kühn with Toto Blanke (1974), make the demise of Dharma in 1974, even more regrettable. Their modernity has nothing to envy of the later advances of Paul Bley with guitar (Pat Metheny, John Scofield), or of OM on 1977s Rautionaha, Patricio Villarroels electric piano adding a nonetheless surprisingly singular touch to Dharma. This is without mentioning a kind of incisive violence when things sped up, which was unique to the Dharma Quintet, or a sound as dense as that of On The Corner by Miles Davis (1972), or Stark Reality, John Abercrombies group from around the same period. Who else could seem approximately close to the Dharma Quintet at the same time... Emergency, a quintet which had played and recorded in France. Masabumi Kikuchi in Japan also deserves a mention. Along with the Cohelmec Ensemble, the Workshop de Lyon, the Full Moon Ensemble, Perception, Armonicord, or the Michel Portal Unit, the Dharma Quintet stand out as one of the most important examples of free jazz as it was played in France at the beginning of the 1970s. Licensed from Dharma. Obi strip; 12-page booklet; Edition of 700." - Souffle Continu.

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After nearly a decade of false starts, multiple game plans veering off the rails, and a handful of shattered hopes and/or dreams, the odyssey is finally complete—the new Fusetron site is here.

This is the first phase of a multipart rollout that will span the next few months: the currently browsable stock includes miscellaneous new releases from the past 8+ months (we have a lot of catching up to do), plus approximately a third of our backstock. Note that we’ve reduced/slashed prices on many titles and will continue to do so in order to make room for new stock. We’ll also be expanding / tweaking / improving / debugging the site itself (for example, we still have work to do on the automated international postage system, not to mention the inevitable inventory discrepancies that come with transferring an ancient and massive database to a new system).

Over the next few months, as we take inventory, clean house, and delve into our storage, we will be uploading thousands of additional items, gradually, on a near-daily basis. This will include the majority of the LPs, as well as many titles, in all formats, once thought long-gone. Many currently “sold out” items are likely to resurface.

Finally, once our general backstock is up (probably in the next two or three months) we’ll begin making our extensive stockpile of rarities available online for the first time: tons of random out-of-print titles, "deadstock," warehouse finds, secondhand collectibles, etc., accumulated over the past few decades.

Frequent/returning customers will be getting early access to these items. Details to follow on how this will work (a priority mailing list? a 'frequent flyer'-like program?), but it will not be based on dollars spent. We want to reward those who consistently support us, especially in the discogs marketplace era (to those who show up trying to poach five copies of a one-off rarity, and nothing else, ever… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ).

So—we suggest you take some time to dig through the site—even we’ve been surprised by what’s been turning up, and there’s much more to come.
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