Art Of Noise - The Seduction Of Claude Debussy

The Seduction Of Claude Debussy is to electronic music what the White Album is to rock and roll. It's the biggest milestone to date in the continuing development of a genre which is still in relative infancy. Imagine variety, because it's all here. Drum n' bass, opera, rap, old school, trance, ambient, a little rave, swingle singers, soundtrack and on and on, and it all makes sense. It all works seamlessly together to describe a life.

Actor John Hurt is the consummate narrator, telling the story of the 19th Century French composer who was insanely ahead of his time, and Sally Bradshaw is the singer whose operatic vocals share the stage with occasional contributions from Donna Lewis and Rakim. The rest is Art Of Noise, at their best, putting together possibly the deepest, widest and richest collection of sounds that I've ever heard in one place.

Long before my initial introduction to this album, which was an a2b format audio file of the opening track, Il Pleure, downloaded from, I first heard their music while living in London during the eighties. I actually used to live close to one of ZTT's studios, Sarm West, and often heard the now familiar samples that made it onto their breakthrough album Beatbox emanating from the big loading bay doors as I walked past from time to time. Beatbox, their second album, was released in 1984 and really helped put electronic music onto the popular music map.

Now here I am, magically transported yet again by this extraordinarily talented posse of trained musicians that decided to make the electronic arts their own, telling the story through audio imagery of one of my favorite artists (thanks, in part, to Tomita's all electronic instrumental Snowflakes Are Dancing album which turned me onto Debussy in the first place).

So prepare to be taken to places that others rarely dare to tread, but rest assured, you're in good hands.

Rating: 988,211 (out of a possible 1,000,000)