[Hidden Rarities #42] Skryvania

Skryvania‘s prog style is rich with abundant use of hypnotic layers of keyboards (especially organ and string synths) creates this impression. On the other hand, Olivier Marina‘s guitar playing is very much influenced by Steve Hackett, albeit with a rougher edge.The importance of the guitar’s presence makes the band’s overall sound closer to Mona Lisa and the rockier facet of classic Genesis. The band is definitely focused on the symphonic prog trend, with an added touch of SpaceRock, Psychedelia.

In the mid ’70s, the almost fully instrumental quartet Skryvania came from the union of a bunch of French teenage prog-heads – still in high school – who wanted to emulate their musical idols: Yes, Genesis, Pink Floyd. While doing their first gigs as a prog cover band, they started to create their own ideas, and by the end of 1977 they had enough original material to fill a long-play: by that time, original keyboardist Henry-Jean Aubin had been replaced by Harold Bazobka. Their low budget didn’t allow them to have the benefit of a solidly professional recording studio, although a famous local radio presenter and sound engineer was in charge of the production of the band’s sole recording. Maybe this was the factor that helped the resulting record to sound the best it could under these circumstances. The band’s obscure status was very much due to the fact that the album’s promotion was almost inexistent: the foursome’s inexperience led them to focus exclusively on playing gigs without leaving some room for promotion in radio programs or magazines.  It doesn’t prevent the listener from appreciating the level of compositional inventiveness and solid interaction developed by all four musicians throughout the album’s track list.

“Skryvania” is a true collector’s item: highly recommended to resolute Symphonic Prog lovers who feel capable of appreciating good prog under mediocre sound quality circumstances.


(1978) Scryvania


Henry-Jean Aubin / organ, synthesizers, violin
Harold Bakobza / organ, synthesizers, violin
Olivier Marina / guitars, vocals
Benoît Reeves / drums, percussion
Alain Yvorra / bass, bass pedals, vocals

Author: Delia Lunardi Acosta

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