Catherine Ribeiro + 2 BIS

Band members                             Related acts

  line up 1  (1968-69) as Catherine Rivbeiro + 2 BIS

- Alain Aldag -- drums, percussion, organ

- Patrice Moullet (aka Albert Juroost) -- guitar, purcuphone, orgolia

- Bernard Pinon -- guitar

- Catherine Ribeiro -- vocals


  line up 2  (1970) as Catherine Rivbeiro + 2 BIS

NEW - Denis Cohen - drums, percussion, keyboards

- Patrice Moullet (aka Albert Juroost) -- guitar, cosmophone,

  purcuphone, orgolia

- Catherine Ribeiro -- vocals





- Atelier Alpes (Patrice Moullet)

- Catherine Ribeiro (solo efforts)

- Catherine Ribiero and Alpes



Genre: progressive

Rating: 3 stars ***

Title:  Catherien Ribeiro + 2 BIS

Company: Select

Catalog:  S-398167

Country/State: Lyons, France

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: Canadian pressing

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 2841

Price: $80.00

Catherine Ribeiro certainly had the good looks of French Ye-Ye girls like France Gall, Francois Hardy, or Sylvie Vartan.  Judging by her debut album, that's where the comparison ended.  

From what little I know about French singer Ribeiro, she started her professional career as an actress, making her film debut in the 1963 Jean Luc Godat film Les Carabiniers.  Working on the film she met future songwriting partner and husband Albert Juroost (aka Patrice Moullet).  Over the next six years Ribeiro recorded a string of French and Portuguese language singles.  None did much commercially, but in 1969 Moullet convinced her to join him in forming a band.   


With Riberio handling vocals, Moullet and Bernard Pinon on guitar, and Alain Aldag on drums, the quartet began playing as 2 BIS.  Signed by the small Festival label, they made their recording debut with 1969's "Catherine Ribeiro + 2 BIS".  The album showcased Ribeiro's powerful, bluesy voice on a collection that somehow managed to mash-up French folk, Edith Piaf-styled chanteuse, Joplin-esque blues, and a healthy dose of free form experimentation.  Take notice the album cover includes a stamp that says "pop free".   They're not kidding.  On tracks like 'Un Sourine, un rire, des eclats' the set had kind of an acid folk vibe, but elsewhere material like 'Les Fees Carabosse' and the instrumental 'Voyage 1' reflected a French Nico, or Yoko Ono flavor - yeah, the message here is this album isn't going to appeal to everyone.  Ribeiro had an exceptional powerful voice (I saw someone describe it as "bracing"), but to my ears, it was one of those voices that quickly went from being technically impressive to outright irritating (check out the dentist drill rocking opener 'Lumiere ecarlate' to get a feel for those comments).   The album's always been a challenge for me, but I'm guessing a big part of that stems from the French lyrics.  You're also left to suspect that had this been an English band, they probably would have been buried under critical praise.


"Catherine Ribiros + 2 BIS" track listing:
(side 1)

1.)  Lumiere ecarlate  (Catherine Ribeiro - Patrice Moulett) - 3:38  rating: *** stars

Geez, 'Lumiere ecarlate' (translated as 'Scarlet Light') is one of those songs you'll love, or detest with a passion.  Her voice is  certainly powerful enough, but backed by a dark and stark arrangement from 2 BIS , there's also something in this performance that's got a chalk-on-blackboard effect on my ears.

2.) Soeur de Race  (Catherine Ribeiro - Patrice Moulett) - 2:40  rating: *** stars

'Soeur de Race' surrounded Ribeiro with a simple acoustic arrangement (Moullet on guitar and a bit of percussion).  Her performances was certainly intense, but not particularly melodic or memorable.  It was still tapped as a single:

- 1969's 'Soure de Race' b/w 'Voyage 1' (Discques Festival catalog number SPX-79)

3.) Les Fees Carabosse  (Catherine Ribeiro - Patrice Moulett) - 5:20  rating: *** stars

'Les Fees Carabosse' (translated as The Wicked Fairies') was outright scary, leaving you to wonder if Ribeiro was going to have a breakdown in the studio.  Almost martial in its intensity, accompanied by a pair of guitars that sounded like they were spitting out machine gun bullets (there also seemed to be occasional artillery bombardments in the background), Ribeiro sounded like she was about to march off to the trenches ...  not something you'd put on for a party.  Towards the end of the song she either caught a piece of shrapnel, or was having one of the strangest orgasms ever recorded on vinyl.  Hum, a French Nico, or Yoko Ono ...

4.) Voyage 1 (instrumental)  (Patrice Moulett) - 5:30  rating: *** stars

Opening up with some Moulett fuzz and feedback guitar, 'Voyage 1' added in some Arabian percussion and fiddle before going off the tracks. What you got here was basically a five minute sound collage complete with lots of Ribeiro moaning, scratchy violin, backward tapes, and other assoreted studio effects.  Happy to get through it alive.


(side 2)

1.) La Solitude  (Catherine Ribeiro - Patrice Moulett)  - 2:59   rating: ** stars

'La Solitude' started out as the album's most laidback folk tune.  It didn't last as something got Ribeiro's hackles up about a minute into the song.  The most convention song on the album (I'm using the term loosely), it was released as a single:

- 1969's 'La Solitude' b/w 'Aria'  (Discque Festival catalog number DN 878)

2.) Un Sourine, un rire, des eclats  (Catherine Ribeiro - Patrice Moulett) - 3:58   rating: *** stars

I've always scoffed at the acid folk label, but 'Un Sourine, un rire, des eclats' certainly sounded like something that fit under that genre description.  Maybe my ears playing tricks, but I thought I heard a touch of Grace Slick influence on this one.

3.) Le Come de l'enfant Dieu  (Catherine Ribeiro - Patrice Moulett) - 4:30   rating: *** stars

Once again Moulett's opening guitar gave you a moment's hope this was going to be a relatively conventional rock tune.  Nah.   It's a singer/songwriter tune that just happens to have a couple of fuzz guitar moves thrown in the arrangement.

4.) Le Point que Scintille  (Catherine Ribeiro - Patrice Moulett) - 5:58   rating: *** stars

Well let's try opening with some Flamenco guitar and Latin percussion and then let Ribeiro go off the tracks.  Yeah, that seemed to work.