The Fractal label has tapped into the archives of the quasi-legendary '70s French avant-garde label Futura and is reissuing some of its weirdest sound artifacts. Musiq Musik was recorded in 1971-1972, came out in 1973, and stands as the first album by Jacques Berrocal's Musik Ensemble (even though it is here credited to Berrocal, Dominique Coster, and Roger Ferlet). Berrocal's musical vision was already fully formed, challenging, uncompromising, and nutty. A blend of free jazz, gamelan, ethnic improv, and performance art, the music still sounds as wild today as it did back then. The three musicians play trumpet, trombone, cornet, and various Middle- and Far-Eastern horns and percussion. The list of instruments also includes balloons, ropes, and explosives. The music is all screeches, clangs, and ululations as the trio explores new musical grounds with a compelling sense of urgency. "Pièces à Lanam" and "Leïla Concerto" are written down and charming in an alien way, while "Anonymous" and "Cryptea" leave room for more improvisation and take more difficult forms. The album is short (only 30 minutes), but intense, and affirms Berrocal's standing as one of France's leading maverick creators of the decade. Musiq Musik appeared on the legendary list of influences included with Nurse With Wound's first album.
AllMusic Review by François Couture