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Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Jean-Luc Guionnet & Thomas Bonvalet - Loges De Souffle (Becoq, 2015) ****½

By Stef

In October 2010, in Bergerac, France, the MONC cultural arts centre created a major event of avant-garde and experimental theatre, dance, visual arts, flash mobs and music with the entire city as the venue, in a very participatory way with the audience and unprepared passers-by. Look here for more information.

As part of this event, Jean-Luc Guionnet and Thomas Bonvalet gave an electroacoustic performance in the protestant temple of the city. Guionnet does not play his usual reeds, but he uses the church organ as the key instrument for the fabulous sonic landscape they create, with Bonvalet playing banjo, mikes, amplifiers, harmonica and tuning fork (why not?). If you ever thought you knew what a banjo sounded like, I suggest that you watch the video below.

The album contains one 40-minute long soundscape, with the organ offering a kind of endless color-shifting drone as a foundation for an infinity of things to happen, shifts in intensity, harsh counter-sounds, reinforcing feedback and a multitude of little sparkles, as if you're listening to a sonic kaleidoscope which keeps revolving and surprisingly changing and offering new vistas and mind-boggling new sounds.

The music is as attractive as it is frightening, petrifying the listener into immobility while these fascinating sounds keep being absorbed and when the fourty minutes are over, and the listener returns to his more rubbery state, he/she is a little, and maybe a lot, disappointed that the experience is over.

Listen and download from Bandcamp.



ih said...

thanks for sharing