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4.8 out of 5 stars121
4.8 out of 5 stars
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on 19 March 2004
I heard Equinoxe part 5 as a child. I did not know the musician, or even the name of the tune at the time. But I was captivated.
When I bought the album I expected one or two good tunes. Few albums promise complete satisfaction. Yet this is akin to a Greatest Hits compliation, with many of his finest pieces in a single collection. And this was only his second album.
While I am a fan, I do not believe Jarre has been consistent. His last two studio albums were quite awful. Even his recent concerts could never hope to emulate his spectacular Paris La Defense show (1990).
Equinoxe is, however, his greatest album and one of the greatest instrumental albums of all time.
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VINE VOICEon 1 August 2006
I loved this when it first appeared, my favourite of JMJ's early output, but was disappointed by the original "Polydor UK" Cd release, Somewhere, JMJ either used better masters for the Disques Dreyfus release, or did some very subtle remix work, as the result is so much more vivid and colourful (the same thing happened with "Zoolook").

There's something for everyone here, my favourites being pt's 5-7, which must be played on a pair of decent, BIG, speakers (or top notch headphones at a pinch) to really show the scale and movement of these pieces.

If you don't already have this, WHY NOT?

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on 13 December 2000
Released in 1978, "Equinoxe" must rank as Jarre's finest work. This album is a lot deeper and darker than "Oxygene", and it features two of the most amazing pieces of modern music you are ever likely to hear (Part 5 and Part 7), and the other tracks are fairly incredible too. Predominantly ambient for the first half of the album, the second half relies on some incredibly catchy tunes set against funky pre-techno basslines. Superb stuff!
One gripe may be that some of the synthesizer whizzes and bleeps are a bit over-the-top, but it's no different really to what William Orbit did on Madonna's "Ray of Light" album.
If you only ever buy one album of instrumental music, buy Jean Michel Jarre's "Equinoxe".
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on 29 May 2003
From start to finish a masterclass in synth music. Swirling phased strings and thumping basslines, each part shifts in tempo and feel to create the ultimate sonic landscape. Highlights must be the wonderful "squelchy" moog sounds in Part 4, the uplifting beat of Equinoxe 5, and the fantastic bassline at the start of Part 7.
Each part blends seamlessly despite all being of different styles.
I couldn't recommend this album more.
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on 20 June 2002
I first heard this album when I was fifteen and it still sends shivers down my spine even now when I hear it. The introduction (equinoxe part 1) is beutiful with it's rapid arpegios and deep portamento pitch sweeps, it's realy an inspiring start to the album but maybee a little short. Part 3 continues with more arpegios and a realy beautiful melody backed in places by mellotron choir, and finishes with a collage of interesting sound effects including an early but authentic synthesised bell chime. Parts 4 and 5 must be two of Jarre's famous pieces, great tunes with his sequncers on overdrive and his passion for Bontempi Organ drum machines. Part 6 carries on from 5 but with more sequences thrown into the exotic mix. The first part of Equinoxe 8 will be more familiar under the name 'Band in the rain' to younger Jarre fans, and still reminds me of french onion sellers on bicycles with it's galic accordian melody. The second part of equinoxe 8 I feel lets the album down a little because it's just a very slow solo of part 5 (jean michel just trying to fill a little more space on the album I feel).
I can't stress what effect this album had on me especialy equinoxe 1. I think after hearing this album I totaly gave up on the chart music of the time and started collecting electronic music and being an avid synth player and composer myself now and at the time this album had a great influence on me. Ta Jean-Michel.
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on 20 January 2008
I have lost count of how many times I have heard Jean-Michel Jarre's 1978 album, Equinoxe, on CD. Everytime I hear it, it evokes so much emotion to this very day. Even though it lasts 38mins. One of the greatest ever electronic concept albums to ever to have been made. I have just recently purchased the original version of Oxygene off this site, as opposed to the new version that contains new mixes, accompanying it. The originals are ALWAYS the best!!! If I now had 2 pick a Top 10 of my favourite albums of all time, Equinoxe would be straight in there with great pride.
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VINE VOICEon 10 February 2016
After the phenomenal world wide success of his first album Oxygene in 1976 it was inevitable that another slice of French Electronica would soon follow. Equinoxe was published two years later in 1978.

Initially Equinoxe is a disappointment, broken into eight parts rather than six, you have to wait until part four and five before you realise that he had once again created a piece of music that somehow gets into your soul and makes you feel happy to be alive. That cloudburst and thunder opener is just phenomenal and really makes the piece feel earthy. I actually attempted to make a student film around part five. I saw it in terms of movement, legs pumping at bike pedals with rain splashing everywhere. I had it all in my head and storyboarded but it never came to pass. However, that's what the very best music does, it plants images in your mind and they stay there.

Brilliant and unforgettable.
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on 18 January 2004
Equinoxe is classic Jarre (along with Oxygene). A memory preserved on disc,of a time when the guy was truly pioneereing synth music,in terms of lush soundscape. Equinoxe is where you can turn off the lights,put on a good pair of headphones,close your eyes,and lie back on a bed to be transported into another world through the music. Equinoxe does this with very effective use of sound. Prepare to be taken away on a psychedelic soundscape of lush synths sounds, and pulsing but warm synths.
I've always felt Equinoxe to be more "Cosmos" based, and Equinoxe "Earth" based. The initial movement of Equinoxe takes you up into the cosmos with a rising and ever filling theme. The 2nd movement is one of the most superb soundscape pieces of music i've ever heard. A sweeping journey through Nebulas,and star fields. Deep,emotional,and heavy hearted. The rest of the album i'll leave you to discover for yourself. Give this CD a shot, and you will not be dissapointed.
Sadly,this Jarre is long gone now. All we have to remind us of this fascinating stage of his career,are his early recordings like Equinoxe,Oxygene,Magnetic Fields, and Rendezvous. That era was Jean Michel being a pioneer in terms of soundscapes and storytelling with music. Thesedays, Jarre seems more interested in trying to "fit in" to popular music, rather than being a rebel against the norm (as he was in his early days). His attempts at trying to fit into mainstream music with DJ re-mixes and club versions, are rather like a man in his 50's thinking that by putting on a baseball cap and wearing baggy jeans, he will appear "cool" to the kids. It does'nt work,and he should give it up, because it betrays everything he worked for in his career, and his pioneering.
The later stage of Jarre's career (the era of "Son Et Lumiere" big concert shows) proved suprisingly to be his musical downfall. Rather than compliment the music,the music aspect was eventually placed on the back burner it seems, and wowing people became the priority instead. The Egypt Millenium Metamorphoses is an example of how shallow his work had become,and empty of anything other than concert material. The music suffered tremendously (even though it remained fun music),and Jarre compromised on his new works by tailoring them to fit his next big lightshow. So,to hear the real skill of early Jarre, then go for Equinoxe and Oxygene. This was when Jarre was truly interested in soundscapes and moods.
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on 10 June 2014
I've loved Equinoxe IV ever since my uncle made me a CD with it on, and when this new album came out, I thought I'd try the album as a whole. I've listened to it play through a few times, and it takes you on an interesting musical journey - no lyrics - just music and interesting sound effects, which seem to tell a story - though I don't claim to be clever enough to interpret Jarre's inimitable style. Give it a whirl if you like something a bit different, especially if you like electronic style music.
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on 20 April 2006
This is his best. It has good atmosphere. It has that french electro feel which he can bring us now and again all over it. Even the organ solo is good. But my favourite is the opening track. Fantastic use of string synths. Lovely and silky. This album is close to a symphony that electronic music can get. It is better polished than oxygene. This album made me a total jarre fan.

Sadly it was downhill from here on. Slowly but surely.
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