Introducing French imprint Chute Libre

This post is part of the cult fiction series, this issue #4

Norman Spinrad on Chute Libre

Norman Spinrad on French collection Chute Libre

Chute Libre is/was a French publishing imprint directed by Gérard Leibovici. They published, amongst others, the translated work of the new wave of science fiction authors Philip José Farmer, Norman Spinrad, Michael Moorcock, Roger Zelazny and Theodore Sturgeon.

I can’t remember who I had this conversation with, but the conclusion was that “we” could not find the illustrator of this beautiful series (follow the link to the source post to find some succulent tentacle erotica), so if anyone knows who was behind these designs, please let “us” know.

Norman Spinrad provided the inspiration for the name Heldon, French guitarist Richard Pinhas‘s band (which to me is the bit the French equivalent to Sonic Youth, but 10 years sooner). The name of the band was taken from Spinrad’s 1972 novel The Iron Dream.

Chute libre is French for free fall.

Via bxzzines, see also English-language covers posted by John Coulthart and all the covers in one handy place by Mike.

4 thoughts on “Introducing French imprint Chute Libre

  1. Mike

    Those covers are absolutely amazing. Thanks for the heads up, despite the fact I have the bxzzines blog bookmarked in three different places, I neglect to check it regularly, even though I’m always amazed by what pops up there.

  2. John Coulthart

    Very nice covers and I dislike a lack of attribution as much as you do so I searched around a bit and discovered this page:

    Individuals entries there for all the books with a number of different illustrators credited including Moebius for a couple of the Farmer volumes, which is a surprise.

    And you may know that Norman Spinrad provided vocals on one of Richard Pinhas’s albums, East/West. Not everyone is impressed by Norman’s contribution (I don’t mind it) but the album is one of Pinhas’s best with a great sleeve by Druillet.

  3. jahsonic

    Thanks for that, great that you found the link with the totality of the bibliography. The two tentacle erotica covers appear indeed to be Moebius’s work, one of the juiciest examples of its genre.

    I must admit that I do not know that many of Pinhas’s albums, I’ve see from what your recent music postings that you are quite the music connoisseur too. Pinhas came my way via the Underground Moderne compilation, still my fave compilation of the 2000s. It featured Heldon’s track Le Voyageur, Nietzsche lyrics recited by Deleuze on music by Richard Pinhas.

    Thanks again.

  4. John Coulthart

    Don’t think I’ve come across Underground Moderne before but I have just about everything on it; that’s a good, eclectic collection.

    I know all the Heldon albums and much of Pinhas’s early work, lost track of him a bit of late but he’s still busy. He studied at the Sorbonne, apparently, hence the philosophical concerns. I tend to see Heldon and Magma as being the French equivalent of Germany’s Kosmische (aka Krautrock) scene.

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