"...an incredibly powerful listening experience. In fact, Heresie is a stunning one-of-a-kind item which has never been duplicated by anyone -- including Univers Zero."
– Bill Tilland/All Music Guide
“The music is consistently ominous, always hinting at the heaviness of metal but never pummelling the listener. And when it occasionally gets dense, it’s a slab of strange, ingenious orchestration you hear, rather than a simple overdriven amp sound.”
– Nick Storring, Exlaim!
released 28 September 2010
How does a group follow up a auspicous and unique debut recording? A recording that is so completely out of step with everything that is currently in fashion in popular and even in experimental music that nearly 35 years later, it still is able to surprise people hearing it for the first time. How? Well, if you were Univers Zero, you did it by moving even more to the extremes of your music. While the influences from 20th Century classical music (Stravinsky, Bartok, Huybrechts) mixed with aspects of progressive rock (the angularity of King Crimson added to the unique zeuhl sound of Magma) remain, they are stripped down and presented in the starkest and darkest way possible. Guitarist Roger Trigaux still plays some amazing licks, but for much of the album, he is hunched over the harmonium (a 19th century pump organ), which gives the music an eerie, gothic sound - a gothic sound matched by the other front line instruments of violin/viola and oboe/bassoon. Meanwhile the rhythm section is completely electric, with heavy Magma-influenced bass and with Daniel Denis' fantastic drumming propelling everything foward.
Originally released in 1979, Heresie has long been considered a high-water mark of new music composition, performance, and dark, sinister intensity for over 30 years and has never been out of print. This reissue transforms and updates Univers Zero’s most infamous work with a new cover that uses bits of the original packaging, as well as many new elements. It also has a striking and clear new remix from the 1979 multi-track tapes that defines and clarifies all the instruments in a way that is much more focused than previous editions. Never have Daniel's cymbal's so clearly sizzled with such menace or has Guy's bass gone so low into the underworld. The reissue is accompanied by a 16 page booklet containing a history of the band’s years during the Heresie period and illustrated with archival photos. Lastly, there is a 12 minute, relvelatory bonus track from very early in the group's life added; a track that later was cannibalized by its composer, into bits that would eventually find their way into "Ersatz" on Le Poison Qui Rend Fou and "The Limping Little Girl" and "Ceux D'En Bas (Suite)" on N°6 by Roger's post UZ group, Present. One of the most significant avant-progressive rock albums of the very late 1970s just got even more significant!