Blood Axis and Les Joyaux de la Princesse – Absinthe

The subtitle of this album is ‘La Folie Verte’, as the green liquor was called that this album is dedicated to. Two great bands work together on this concept album, two bands of which most releases so far are limited and highly sought after, so I expect that there will be a lot of interest for this album.

The members of both projects have long been under the spell of Absinthe. Michael Moynihan has been an Absinthe drinker since he was 16. He already released an ode to Absinthe on the first Blood Axis album. Erik of Les Joyaux de la Princesse has been brewing his own version of this dangerous spirit. Absinthe was highly popluar at the end of the nineteenth century, and very fashionable in artistic circles. But because it was a very strong liquor, that caused various people to get into states of delerium, it became forbidden. Just as the recordings for Absinthe: La Folie Verte were being completed, the European Union voted to lift the 85 year old ban on Absinthe.

The booklet and digipack of this release are beautifully designed. They contain many images and documents dealing with the green fairie. Musically most striking is the input of les Joyaux de la Princesse. Stylistically this album seems to fit better in the oeuvre of les Joyaux than that of Blood Axis. The tracks consist of a mixture of sampled historical sources combinded with layers of ambient electronic sounds. Against that background Michael Moynihan is reciting texts about absinthe in his recognizable manner. All in all a rather quiet album, of which I can’t really pick out singular songs, it should be regarded as a unity. I find this a fascinating album, that seems too grow on me after very listening turn. It only makes me thirsty… In my mind I’m in Paris, in the fin de si├Ęcle, strolling from bar to club…

Following the CD version, in 2002 Athanor will issue a special limited edition boxset containing a book, various printed pieces, and two 10″ picture discs with remixes from Absinthe: La Folie Verte as well as live recordings from the debut performance of this material, presented on stage by Blood Axis and Les Joyaux de la Princesse in Portugal in October 2001.

artist: Blood Axis
label: Athanor
details: digipack, 11 songs, 52 minutes