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På skive


«Tardif | L’appel du vide»

Brûlez les meubles (burn the furniture in Québécois French) is the duo of Canadian, Montréal-based guitarist Louis Beaudoin-de la Sablonnière and Rimouski-based experimental bassist Éric Normand, who leads the Le GGRIL (Grand Groupe Régional d’Improvisation Libérée) experimental ensemble, known for his duos with experimental improvisers like trumpeter Franz Hautzinger, clarinetist Xavier Charles and keyboards player Magda Mayas, who is also an instrument designer.

These two composers-improvisers have long shared a mutual interest in each other’s music despite their different artistic backgrounds (and the fact that they live more than 500 km apart). They like to improvise together and both share vinyl bulimia and a passion for contemporary jazz. They also like to invite like-minded musicians to explore their musical universes and to give life to the melodic and simple pieces sketched in lead pencil, on scattered sheets, during the months between their meetings. The duo released its self titled debut album in 2018 (Tour de Bras/ Circum Disc) with drummer Louis-Vincent Hamel.

Tardif hosts Montréal-based reeds player-composer Jean Derome, one of the major forces in the Canadian free music scene, co-founder of the label Ambiances Magnétiques and frequent collaborator of like-minded improvisers like guitarist Fred Frith, clarinetist Louis Sclavis and drummer Han Bennink, and American drummer-composer John Hollenbeck. The music sounds like an homage to the jazz guitar legacy, with strong references to Jim Hall, Bill Frisell, René Thomas and Brandon Ross. The music revolves around simple themes and rhythmic patterns, and its vibe is contemplative and reserved, abstract but meditative. This quartet leaves its jazz guitar comfort zone rarely but proves on «pedagogique» that it can swing and rock wildly, almost like a Sonny Sharrock meeting John Zorn’s Naked City. Derome and Hollenbeck’s free jazz introduction to «maiange» hints at the hidden energy of this quartet.

L’appel du vide (the call of the void) features Brûlez les meubles as a trio with fellow Quebecois drummer-sound artist Tom Jacques, who focuses on expanding the sonic palette of his own musical instruments (as well as his sound installations) in order to explore musical terrains that are unattainable with conventional instruments. The atmosphere is more open and free improvised thanks to the free role of Jacques but apparently, his free pulses allow la Sablonnière and Normand to stretch their roles furthermore but, still, honor the jazz guitar legacy. «Carla» sounds like an homage to Carla Bley and the enchanting melodies of «La Manikoutai» and «La suite des choses» capture best the breezy and unassuming spirit of this musical meeting.

Eyal Hareuveni

Louis Beaudoin-de la Sablonnière (el.g), Éric Normand (ele.b), Jean Derome (as, bfl), John Hollenbeck (dr, perc), Tom Jacques (dr)

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