The first release to reveal Philippe Lauzier’s installation work, Dôme offers two performative compositions that were created with an apparatus made of bells, zithers, motors and a Korg synthesizer. These pieces were played and recorded in 2015 at La Passe, in Montréal. Dôme invites an immersive listening in the density and continuity of the drone — not without proposing a variety of subtleties and atmospheres, at times calm, bewitching, delirious.
Saxophonist and clarinetist, Philippe is part of many solo and collective projects in which he explores new instrumental processes, including preparations and electronic devices. He also contributes to interdisciplinary creations that lead him to put his musical language in relation to other forms of expression. In 2014, Philippe was invited to develop an original artwork for the FIMAV sound installation series and created Gritty, which was one of the early stages of the device used for the music of Dôme.
- Small Scale Music
- SSM 017 / 2017
- Total duration: 34:26
- Small Scale Music
- SSM 017_NUM / 2017
- Total duration: 34:26
This item can be downloaded and/or listened to at smallscalemusic.bandcamp.com.
Not in catalogue
This item is not available through our web site. We have catalogued it for information purposes only.
Audio cassetteSSM 01711,95 CAD
DownloadSSM 017_NUMAvailable via BandcampNot in catalogue
In the Press
Pierre Cécile, Le son du grisli, May 31, 2017La cassette est jaune comme un soleil, et ce n’est pas pour rien. Car Lauzier vous décoche de ces rayons en manipulant ces cordes rattachées les unes aux autres, fantomatiques, crépitantes, bourdonnantes, sifflantes, déraillantes, en un mot: sciantes!
Tristan Bath, The Wire, no. 398, April 1, 2017However they were assembled, both 17 minute single takes are surprisingly luminescent and joyful.
Frans de Waard, Vital, no. 1072, February 27, 2017Excellent release
Bryon Hayes, Exclaim!, January 22, 20179/10
C’est une bien belle cassette que ce petit Dôme. Voilà, c’est (déjà) dit. D’autant que la musique de Philippe Lauzier, je ne l’attendais pas spécialement, ni avec empressement ni au tournant. En plus, moi qui le croyais clarinettiste ou saxophoniste (je l’avais entendu avec Éric Normand ou avec Martin Tétreault et Pierre-Yves Martel dans XYZ), voilà qu’il débarque ce 31 juillet 2015 en installateur cithariste à laptop (et en short, une photo le prouve, ce ‘est pas moi qui invente)… Il faudra faire avec.
La cassette est jaune comme un soleil, et ce n’est pas pour rien. Car Lauzier vous décoche de ces rayons en manipulant ces cordes rattachées les unes aux autres, fantomatiques, crépitantes, bourdonnantes, sifflantes, déraillantes, en un mot: sciantes! Que notre homme en pince pour les cordes, cela ne se discute pas. A tel point qu’il les arrache à leur nature, elles qui méritent plus que ces vieilles caisses de bois et de résonance, et les sublime dans ce qui ressemble à un fabuleux ballet électroacoustique. Est-ce assez d’éloge? En tout cas, c’est bien la première fois que je me plains d’un coup de soleil.
Dôme documents an installation work by Montréal saxophonist / clarinettist Philippe Lauzier. Composed for a specially made contraption comprising bells, zithers, a Korg and several motors, the music nonetheless feels distinctly organic. Quite how Lauzier plays the music is tough to discern from the recording — the jangling strings and tinkling bells sound like they’re being jabbed at by motorised ghosts in the machine. For long passages all the elements fire at once, although the loveliest moment comes at the end of Far Side, when alarm clocks, bells and strings take it in turns in a motorised conversation. However they were assembled, both 17 minute single takes are surprisingly luminescent and joyful.
Originally Lauzier is saxophone and clarinet player and does so with people from the world of improvised music. However since 2014 he also works on the development of an instrument of his own, half way between something to look at and to be played, which he calls Gritty. On his solo cassette Dôme we hear a recording of a somewhat more developed version of that, recorded in Montréal in 2015. The instrument consists of bells, zithers, motors and a Korg synthesizer, and on this tape there are two seventeen-minute pieces that simply sound beautiful. This is the kind of acoustic drone music that I enjoy a lot. The motor based devices spinning against strings and metal objects, complete with just a fine dash of reverb (I have no idea what the Korg is doing here), make up for music that reminded me of Organum or early Paul Panhuysen. It is played by a human and has a very human touch, as opposed by objects being played in a similar way but controlled by midi or some sort of computer interference. Lauzier creates a massive texture with all sorts of small sounds happening above and below the über-drone, and sometimes it veers towards feedback and noise, but every time Lauzier knows how to move back and take control again. There is not much difference between both sides, which is good; I had it on repeat all afternoon, doing all sorts of boring computer work and every now and then I sat back and listened more closely, effectively doing the same as the music; moving around while going from quiet to loud and back again. Excellent release.
Montréal-based imprint Small Scale Music is slowly becoming a label to watch for those interested in adventurous music. Last year, the label dropped Katabasis / Anabasis, a solid double bass workout from Toronto ex-pat Aaron Lumley, and this recent cassette, filled with crystalline reverberations from veteran Montréal experimentalist Philippe Lauzier, really showcases the curatorial chops of the Small Scale Music cabal.
Lauzier is known as a reed player, yet with Dôme he showcases the results of an installation in which he prepared a set of bells, zithers and motors, accompanying the clangour with a Korg synthesizer drone. Surprisingly beautiful, the two 17-minute pieces achieve a stunning sense of musicality, as the shimmering vortices of sound are almost hallucinatory. Lauzier manipulates his host of rotating implements so that they rub, strike and glide across their metallic counterparts, while the synth supplies a complementary backdrop of slowly morphing drones. The rising and falling of the action gives the songs a feeling of structure, where one might expect complete chaos.
It’s this ability of Lauzier’s, to wrangle the unwieldy nature of his ’instruments’ into a euphonious set of compositions, that sets Dôme up as an exemplar of high quality, installation-based experimental music.