The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
Jean Michel Jarre - Zoolook
Old 29th February 2020
  #1
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
Jean Michel Jarre - Zoolook

I've been listening a lot to JMJ again after a considerable time. Makes for great listening on the daily commute

I think Zoolook in particular is a fantastic album and I have always been interested in the contributions of Marcus Miller and Yogi Horton in particular.

Just watching the following video on youtube



and the Fairlight screen popped up (7:29 on timecode)



Nice to see Marcus' name on the screen! I always wondered how that session must have gone down and seems like (from interviews I have seen from both JMJ and MM) for the most part JMJ just simply sampled MM and sequenced it in the fairlight...

Cool stuff for the time... think the bass sounds great on that record...
Old 1st March 2020
  #2
Gear Head
 
It's JMSs Album I like best. Most of his other stuff I find kinda boring but this album is different than anything else.
Do you know of similar music? I couldn't find any so far.
Old 1st March 2020
  #3
Lives for gear
 
tricera's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
It was the last JMJ album I bought. I like it, but still wish he'd refrained from the drums. I still listen to it occasionally, but Oxygene, Equinoxe and Magnetic Fields come out more often.

If I had to pick a favourite it would be Magnetic Fields. I wore my copy down as background for reading sci-fi novels.
Old 1st March 2020
  #4
Deleted 231be8b
Guest
I used to love Zoolook when it first came out, now I listen to it and think it's a bit too cheesy. They "remixed" some of the vinyl tracks for the CD release and removed key elements which spoiled them and I don't get why?

Would like to get my hands on his sample library he used for it though.
Old 1st March 2020 | Show parent
  #5
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarcB ➡️
I used to love Zoolook when it first came out, now I listen to it and think it's a bit too cheesy. They "remixed" some of the vinyl tracks for the CD release and removed key elements which spoiled them and I don't get why?

Would like to get my hands on his sample library he used for it though.
Zoolook is one of those albums where they keep messing with the mixes and track running order.

The original CD replaced the LP versions of the title track and "Zoolookologie" with the single remixes and swapped their positions. (It wasn't the first time Jarre had done that sort of thing, but very few people noticed the subtle change with Equinoxe V, and the single remix has been the only one available since 1979. He would do it again with "Revolutions", this time replacing the title track with a drastically different version.)

Anyway, supposedly some early CD copies have the original LP mixes, but I've never been able to confirm that. Some *show* the LP tracklisting, which has "Zoolook" as track 3 instead of 5, but still play the remixed version. Supposedly the most recent remaster had the original versions, but I'm told it has versions different from either the original LP or the single remixes. I haven't checked it out as it's another loudness war casualty.
Old 1st March 2020 | Show parent
  #6
Deleted 39b332e
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by tricera ➡️
If I had to pick a favourite it would be Magnetic Fields. I wore my copy down as background for reading sci-fi novels.
It's an album i like as well, but program my CD player to miss track 5 though, it's Jarre having a laugh on that one. Incidentally the Korg Rhythm KR-55 is all over MF. Apart from MF-5 where it's just an Elka Artist 707 organ.

The middle part of MF-1 is Jarre pre-Zoolook, but a couple of pre-Zoolook tracks can be heard on Music For Supermarkets (Diva, Ethnicolor II and Blah Blah Cafe), along with a demo version of Rendezvous part-5.
Old 1st March 2020
  #7
Lives for gear
 
Mastropiero's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
The 'tsut' voice

By the way... that nice 'tsut' voice that he used for Ethnicolor I and Zoolooklogie was played at the Emulator I.

The original Emulator I hasn't loop points (it looped the entire wave while the key was pressed). That's why the 'tsut' sounds two times for long notes.

Please, find attached the original sample. Enjoy ;-)
Attached Files

emulator_tsut.wav (27.7 KB, 2448 views)

Old 1st March 2020 | Show parent
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Mastropiero's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarcB ➡️
I used to love Zoolook when it first came out, now I listen to it and think it's a bit too cheesy. They "remixed" some of the vinyl tracks for the CD release and removed key elements which spoiled them and I don't get why?

Would like to get my hands on his sample library he used for it though.
Some sounds were taken from the standard libraries of Emulator I (e.g. 'tsut' voice on Ethnicolor I and Zoolooklogie) and Fairlight CMI II (e.g. 'SarArr' voice on Zoolook and the 'Wooloomooloo' loop). But most of them were sampled for the album.

He also sampled end recycled some stuff from his early musique concrète works.
Old 1st March 2020
  #9
Lives for gear
 
becks bolero's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
that was a neat vid: I wonder why he walked over & started(?) the sequencer on the Moog modular at the beginning?

didn't hear anything....maybe it was for show?

or possibly he's patched into it as a VCA
Old 2nd March 2020
  #10
Registered User
 
1 Review written
🎧 5 years
Jean Michel Jarre - Zoolook-zoolook-fairlight-sample-list.jpg

Be nice to get my hands on these original fairlight samples. Especially now that the QasarBeach fairlight emulation is out!
Attached Thumbnails
Jean Michel Jarre - Zoolook-zoolook-fairlight-sample-list.jpg  
Old 2nd March 2020 | Show parent
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Mastropiero's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruno Republic ➡️
He would do it again with "Revolutions", this time replacing the title track with a drastically different version.)
That’s true. It was very disappointing when I first listened to the CD version and the great original intro was gone (I mean the Turkish flute at the beginning of the title track). Fortunately, I managed to find a different CD version featuring the original ‘Revolutions’ track.

I wonder who decided those changes... JMJ himself or the record company?
Old 2nd March 2020 | Show parent
  #12
Gear Head
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mastropiero ➡️
I wonder who decided those changes... JMJ himself or the record company?
AFAIK there was a lawsuit because he had no authorization to use the flute part.
Old 2nd March 2020
  #13
Deleted 5a55dd9
Guest
Zoolook still sounds so great and I must of listened to it over 1000 times since 1984 , recently he did a stunning live version in his Connection concert, check it out as it really is a great version of Ethnicolor !


I have the original CD without the remixes, a birthday gift from my parents in 1984 and it's still perfect.

It's quite hard to find but not impossible, the text is smaller on the back !

I think the whole Equinoxe album was remixed in 1979, its just Pt.5 was also re-worked. Black face are original mix/master, Jarre in shiny jacket is the remaster as well as the double Oxygene/Equinoxe album.

The original Pt.5 sounds so raw and lively compared to the brighter and cleaner sounding remix, a shame the original was never included on any CD releases.
Old 2nd March 2020
  #14
Lives for gear
 
WozNYC's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
JMJ was already 36 in that video yet he looks like he's maybe 21. Dude is immortal.
Old 2nd March 2020
  #15
Gear Maniac
 
imagine listening to JMJ unironically
Old 2nd March 2020
  #16
Registered User
 
🎧 10 years
When i first heard it I thought: LOOK, I've got a sampler and I'm gonna use it ! Years after everybody else.....
I still don't like it.
Old 2nd March 2020 | Show parent
  #17
Lives for gear
 
Mastropiero's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by ranzee ➡️


Be nice to get my hands on these original fairlight samples. Especially now that the QasarBeach fairlight emulation is out!
it's amazing that just ONE sample of that list ("BIZARRE.VC") comes from the standard library.
Old 2nd March 2020
  #18
Registered User
 
🎧 10 years
For me, Mr Jarre took himself a bit too seriously on the one hand, and fell into a rut on the other, for many albums. Like Mike Oldfield, trying to find those real gems in the discography. Zoolook might be a little too campy and popy for some, but it was such a change of pace for me, I loved it. He really mixed things up on that one.
Old 2nd March 2020 | Show parent
  #19
Lives for gear
 
JPogo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by naos ➡️
imagine listening to JMJ unironically
I've never done otherwise

Quote:
Originally Posted by wiredessence ➡️
When i first heard it I thought: LOOK, I've got a sampler and I'm gonna use it ! Years after everybody else.....
I still don't like it.
Me neither, though I've grown to mostly tolerate it. Which owes partly to my expectation; I'd been waiting three years for Jarre's next album, and ZOOLOOK is VERY different from the previous three. Chants had already been a bit of a departure, featuring more percussion than the previous albums -- partly a reflection of developing technology. So it was only reasonable that ZOOLOOK leaped forward again.

The difference, of course, was that technology had drastically changed the potential palette, and Jarre aspired to place himself at the vanguard. My main dissatisfaction of 1984 was that it was so very busy, but not so very focused. This had sometimes been true before (e.g., background noises on Equinoxe 4 are a bit excessive) but it just didn't seem to work as well with digital sounds. The lack of an overarching theme left the songs standing on their own, unadorned by the fabulously smooth transitions which characterized the earlier albums.

It's a bold effort, though; Jarre seems determined to make a standout album that owed nothing to OXYGENE. And he did; there are several standout tracks, despite my general disappointment. At one point last year I spend a week revisiting ZOOLOOK, thinking some resequencing of tracks might be more satisfying, perhaps even some crossfading. Perhaps intermixing some tracks from REVOLUTIONS, its nearest cousin in terms of sound. Some of the experimentation hasn't aged so well, but that's just the risk of venturing into new territory.

It always surprises me to see ZOOLOOK regarded by some as their favorite Jarre album -- sometimes the only Jarre album they enjoy -- because I think the analog era suited Jarre's tendencies better. But Jarre has always been a pop artist, and ZOOLOOK is certainly an interesting pop album, even when I think it fails. And frankly I want artists to be willing to take that chance, to risk failure in the pursuit of new directions. His following album RENDEZ-VOUS returned to safer ground, and consequently is largely unimportant -- a decent release, not a standout. ZOOLOOK is a standout, even if it annoys me as often as it delights.
Old 2nd March 2020
  #20
Lives for gear
 
pr0gr4m's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Somewhat related:
A buddy of mine, the guy who introduced me to JMJ, had the record/album/LP/33 1/3. Were the remixes you guys speak of on it or on something different. Because I have the CD (bought decades ago) and it doesn't have some of the tracks I remember. I remember these "extra" tracks being quite sparse, less music and more just the samples being played, but that could be just bad memory. I've half-heartedly looked for these forever but never found them.
Is my only salvation finding the original record?
Old 2nd March 2020 | Show parent
  #21
Deleted 39b332e
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by wiredessence ➡️
When i first heard it I thought: LOOK, I've got a sampler and I'm gonna use it ! Years after everybody else.....
I still don't like it.
Jarre already had a Fairlight 3 years before Zoolook. Besides he had already done a kind of sampling in his early years La Cage/Erosmachine.

I had two versions of Zoolok on CD, the first CD release had the original album version. Subsequent releases had the 2 remixed versions of Zoolookologie (trk 3) and Zoolook (trk 5). I do have the 12" extended versions of those two tracks mentioned.

You should be able to find the original LP/CD on ebay.
Old 3rd March 2020 | Show parent
  #22
Lives for gear
 
Mastropiero's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by pr0gr4m ➡️
Somewhat related:
A buddy of mine, the guy who introduced me to JMJ, had the record/album/LP/33 1/3. Were the remixes you guys speak of on it or on something different. Because I have the CD (bought decades ago) and it doesn't have some of the tracks I remember. I remember these "extra" tracks being quite sparse, less music and more just the samples being played, but that could be just bad memory. I've half-heartedly looked for these forever but never found them.
Is my only salvation finding the original record?
I own both the very first LP version and the 1997 CD reedition. Despite some remixing differences (sometimes very subtle, sometimes not so subtle), there aren't major gaps between both editions.
Old 3rd March 2020
  #23
Deleted 5a55dd9
Guest
Zoolook original album was released first and then 2 singles from the album got remixed and released as 7" and 12" extended singles, they charted low unfortunately

It's those two 7" single remixes that then appeared on the second edition of the album

The original first edition is the best IMO

The gated drums are fantastic on Zoolook, really punchy and dramatic, a real drummer playing an electronic kit just like he had for the China concerts, and the chord progression in Ethnicolor as the track reaches its climax is a work of art, Jarre at his very best.
Old 3rd March 2020 | Show parent
  #24
Lives for gear
 
Mastropiero's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by ORCHESTRION ➡️
The gated drums are fantastic on Zoolook, really punchy and dramatic, a real drummer playing an electronic kit just like he had for the China concerts, and the chord progression in Ethnicolor as the track reaches its climax is a work of art, Jarre at his very best.
I also enjoyed a lot the Destination Docklands version. Essentially, they 'played' a multitracked recording of the studio version but added that mind-blowing solo played by Dominique Perrier (you know, the one inspired by Beethoven Sonata no. 14 3rd movement).

The best JMJ albums would never have been SO good without Dominique Perrier contribution. That guy has probably played the best synth solos ever. Just listen to Rendez-vous part 2, Chronologie part 3 or Calypso Part 3 (Fin de Siècle).
Old 4th March 2020
  #25
Gear Head
 
DrMickey's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
When I heard Zoolook for the first time in 1985, I wasn't impressed at all. In fact, I really didn't like it. Just two years before I had discovered Jean-Michel Jarre and fell in love with the amazing trinity (Equinox, Magnetic Fields, and Oxygen).

The Zoolook album came as a shock to me. Gone were the days of the soft, warm, and round analogue sound –substituted by cold and aliasing samples and (shock, horror) (some) real instruments.

I cursed the fact that (some) musicians always have to reinvent themselves and want to "develop". Why couldn't they stay the same?

Over the years it grew on me though and I could find the sexiness in Frankensteining samples. It was still Jean-Michel Jarre, it still sounded bold and mysterious, albeit in another way than his earlier works.

These days, I love his first five albums equally. What came after Rendezvous, not so much (with a notable exception of Métamorphoses – which I have a sweet spot for).

I adore these five albums and they had a major influence in me starting to create synthesizer music. And while a lot of Jarre signature sounds have been demystified by now, there are still parts which leave me puzzled ("how the *** did he do that?") whenever I hear them.

Last edited by DrMickey; 4th March 2020 at 06:05 PM.. Reason: spelling
Old 4th March 2020 | Show parent
  #26
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by ranzee ➡️


Be nice to get my hands on these original fairlight samples. Especially now that the QasarBeach fairlight emulation is out!
Thanks for posting the image... I couldn't get it to upload for some reason!
Old 4th March 2020
  #27
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
Thanks for all the replies folks! I think a few of you have the same experience as me. I also saw Zoolook as a massive departure... in fact I held off on buying it back in the day due to the cover alone.

I, like many, heard a lot of Jarre in the 70s and only got his albums when CDs came out in the early to mid 80s. First CD I got from him was Magnetic Fields then Oxygene and Equinoxe. Loved Rendezvous and bought it in the first week it came out.

I still rate Oxygene as his best work but Zoolook has some great material. I would love to hear more synth stuff in the style of Ethnicolor (brilliant build up and the way he places samples is like no one else)... the closest vibe I heard is probably Trevor Horn's productions like "Slave to the Rhythm" which doesn't much like it at all!

Zoolook has some cheesy moments but the title track is kinda jazz fusionish in terms of the chords... I also like the drum machine vibe on the album...

I would have loved to have seen what he would have done with a Zoolook 2 rather than the Oxygene/Equinoxe releases...

just a few more things:

I love the track Arpegiator so much... makes a perfect track for my daily commute on the train.

Love the part on Magnetic Fields 1 where it gets all orchestral in a wash... 8.21 onwards.... just incredible...

Old 4th March 2020
  #28
Deleted 39b332e
Guest
There was one more track that was recorded for Zoolook, but never made the album in the final cut and that was Moon Machine.
It was released instead on a flexi-disc at first, then on the b-side of Rendezvous IV (special remix) then on the Images album.

Old 5th March 2020
  #29
Registered User
 
🎧 10 years
Good to still see some JMJ fans around!

I've listen first time to JMJ when I was maybe 10 or so. My cousin from big city brought a tape of Zoolook and told me it is played by a computer. I of course understood that a computer generated the whole music and I was in a total awe. It was mechanical, electronic, distant and cold and so future....them computers can do anything now, darn. In few years they won't even need us.

I was heartbroken to learn much later that no, it wasn't a computer that made the music, it was a dude playing it as an instrument... I would still prefer my version.
And slowly like that one by one things disappeared from my future... no holiday on moon, no flights to distant planets, no flying cars, no robot friends, and no computers making electronic music. All the sci-fi books I read were just all fi and no sci. Instead of all those big things we got a cellphone and facebook and youtube.
Sad world it is.
Old 5th March 2020 | Show parent
  #30
Lives for gear
 
Sapro's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Syn303 ➡️
There was one more track that was recorded for Zoolook, but never made the album in the final cut and that was Moon Machine.
It was released instead on a flexi-disc at first, then on the b-side of Rendezvous IV (special remix) then on the Images album.

Thanks for that, I haven't heard that one before. You can hear the similarities between the drums (Linndrum I think) on this and those used in Zoolook. I too have mixed feelings about some tracks on Zoolook but absolutely love some and especially Ethnicolor. It was a shock after his earlier albums but definitely a grower.
📝 Reply

Similar Threads

Thread / Thread Starter Replies / Views Last Post
replies: 133 views: 25378
Avatar for bitleyTM
bitleyTM 22nd January 2018
replies: 0 views: 421
Avatar for Tangentofdream
Tangentofdream 21st December 2016
replies: 7409 views: 651003
Avatar for Quantum7
Quantum7 10th December 2022
replies: 121 views: 9415
Avatar for JPogo
JPogo 29th July 2019
Topic:
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearspace Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…

Forum Jump
Forum Jump