Liaisons Dangereuses is the kind of record I write the gullbuy for. This CD came at me out of the blue, literally handed to me by someone I had never even asked for the disc from.
Liaisons Dangereuses was mixed in 1981 at Conny Plank's studio in Dusseldorf.
The songs are a real treat. They fit well in the current electroclash / EBM / New Beat environment. Liaisons Dangereuses was formed by Beate Bartel and Chris Haas. Chris (or Chrislo) Haas was a founding member of DAF and Minus Delta T. Beate Bartel formed Malaria! and Mania D after this band broke up.
Liaisons Dangereuses was a band that fit in well with Einsterzende Neubaten and DAF in sound. They found their ace when Krishna Goineau was found to do vocals. He brings the same intensity to the project that Rozz Williams brought to early Christian Death. Liaisons Dangereuses shared an aestehetic with Christian Death, but there are electronics instead of guitars, and female background vocals.
Before Krishna Goineau was found, the duo of Beate Bartel and Chris Haas recorded a cassette as CHBB. This tape is sought after with the intensity Harrison Ford sought the ark of the covenant in Raiders of the Lost Ark.
Liaisons Dangereuses were part of the German avante-garde, more art than dance, though their sound became popular on Electronic Body Music dancefloors everywhere with the incredible song Los Ninos del Parque.
The CD starts off with Mystere dans le Brouillard. This song amazes me. It has the dark bass sound that Factory bands used and flat metal pipe bell sound.
Los Ninos del Parque has backing vocals by someone named Joanna that sounds like Lydia Lunch or Hanayo. For the handful of shows the band did, her part was filled a few times by Anita Lane, and by Hideto Sasdaki once.
Etre Assis ou Danser sounds like an electrobeat version of Liaisons Dangereuses contemporaries Fàshiön (Luke's vocals), with a sax solo as crazy as James Chance might have blown.
Apertif de la Mort sounds a bit like The Leather Nun. There is a heart like beat as the only steady part of this sparse track. The vocals intertwine with metal parts being hit.
Kess Kill fe Show sounds like Der Plan.
Peut Etre ...Pas has dual male/female vocals and a vivid beat.
Avant - Apres Mars reminds me of the Scars song Author! Author!. Scars were a Scottish band that got tied in with the New Romantic scene. Seeing as they recorded Author! Author! in 1981 I imagine it was a case of parallel evolution.
El Macho y la Nena has a busy synth part and spanish lyrics that tell a story.
Dupont has fairly abstract electronics in it. I think of Clock DVA while listening to this track.
The forty minute CD closes out with the bands signature song Liaisons Dangereuses. As with all the tracks, my appreciation of the lyrics (which seem to be very important) would increase if I could understand French or Spanish. The song ends abruptly after 1:40. It is not their master statement.
Even without knowing what is being said, these songs speak to me as I listen to them in 2003. I am very glad that Hit Thing reissued this record.
Hit Thing also reissued another interesting record at the same time as Liaisons Dangereuses. Georges Montalba's two records 'Pipe Organ Favorites' & 'Fantasy in Pipe Organ and Percussion' have music like you might have heard as a child when passing a Wurlitzer organ store.
I remember the demonstrations pumped out into the street as enticement to buy an organ. Listening to those recordings on CD turns the most square of square records into a strange diversion from a busy life.
More power to Hit Thing for putting out both of these records in great looking and sounding packages.