Jean-Jacques Perrey Et Son Ondioline FORGOTTEN FUTURES 7/10 Charming account of French pop pioneer’s early electronic explorations Jean-Jacques Perrey, who died in November aged 89, was a genial boffin best known for his influential work with the Moog synthesiser. He befriended its inventor Robert Moog in the mid-1960s and concocted the dizzy keyboard funk of Moog Indigo and The In Sound From Way Out! But his first love was the Ondioline, an electronic precursor to the synthesiser invented – as any self-respecting Stereolab fan will tell you – by Frenchman Georges Jenny in 1941. Perrey loved the possibilities of the Ondioline’s effects and mimetic qualities – it could imitate a dozen instruments – and by the early-’60s he’d become both the world’s only Ondioline virtuoso and a travelling salesman for the keyboard. Indeed, the second half of this compilation, thoughtfully assembled by Gotye’s Wally De Backer, features Perrey demonstrating the range of the Ondioline’s sonority with 10-second clips of him mimicking a banjo, castanets, oboe and so on, restored from the original acetate. The first half collects 11 of Perrey’s more conventional Ondioline compositions from the ’50s and ’60s, including whimsical nuggets such as “Danielle Of Amsterdam”, written with a young Angelo Badalamenti, and the goofy groove of “Chicken On The Rocks” and “Barnyard In Space”, the Ondioline decorating each with rude squawks.
Extras: 7/10. A 36-page booklet with archive photos and liner notes by Simon Reynolds.
Cut it out: Jean Jacques Perrey and his amazing Ondioline