Q - 8/95, p.1193 Stars
- Good - "...BOHEME....[features a] greater emphasis on East European musics. If it's cultural tourism, then the scenery is very pretty. Heart-stopping melodies abound even if the Euro-rock arrangements recall Jean-Michel Jarre's designer banalities..."
Deep Forest: Eric Mouquet, Michel Sanchez.
Additional personnel: Marta Sebestyen (vocals).
Recorded at EMM Studio.
Includes liner notes by Eric Mouquet and Michel Sanchez.
BOHEME won a 1996 Grammy Award for Best World Music Album.
The two producers who are Deep Forest are folklorists with keyboards and samplers and visions of one world. Instead of traveling back-country roads and recording native singers on their home turf, they comb the world of recorded music and sample the natives; and instead of presenting them as they are, they mix and match them and supply the beats themselves. Following a debut that was based on Pygmy music from Central Africa, BOHEME scans the landscape of Eastern Europe and Asia for the exotic sounds of throat singing, cantorial chanting and Hungarian folk melodies. Add in ambient dance tracks and keyboards blips, and you have Tuvan techno.
The star voice on BOHEME belongs to Transylvanian singer Marta Sebestyen, whose records are sampled on some tracks and who sings directly on others. On "Bulgarian Melody," the producers drop out the beats altogether to showcase her mesmerizing, folk-ish throat singing. "Deep Folk Song" is a sprightly, accordion-based folk dance, spiced with high, otherwordly vocal chants; it tips the balance, momentarily, away from techno and toward the local culture. "Cafe Europa" stretches the album's landscape to include an American Indian chant, and the seamless way it merges into the techno beat suggest Deep Forest's true message: that two very different local cultures might just be parts of one much bigger culture.
Composers: Eric Mouquet; Mike Sanchez .
Audio Mixers: Dan Gellert; David Bottrill; Eric Mouquet; Joe Gibb; Michel Sanchez.
Recording information: EMM Studio.
Photographers: Jacko Vassilev; Pierre Terrasson.
Arrangers: Eric Mouquet; Mike Sanchez ; Michel Sanchez.
Much like Deep Forest's debut album, Boheme is a combination of club music and worldbeat. While the album is certainly danceable, it works better as trance-inducing mood music, although it isn't quite as consistent as the debut. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine