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28 March 2017
By Dæv Tremblay in Can this even be called music?, March 28, 2017

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“mind-blowing album […] masterpiece of experimental music”

Chants et danses… with Strings! (Vol. III) is a rather mind-blowing album by Robert Marcel Lepage, René Lussier, and the Bozzini Quartet. This album is a masterpiece of experimental music, joining together chamber music, noise music, and improvisation. The guitarist and clarinetist are joined here by an experimental and classical string quartet, which serves as support and filler more than anything else. Their role isn’t prominent but certainly gives more body to the record. It’s a really unique album I’d recommend to anyone!

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21 March 2017
By Ken Waxman in Musicworks #127 (Canada), March 21, 2017

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JGD’s other interest appears to be in updating to the twenty-first century the variant of jazz-rock-psychedelic fusion that permeated 1970s music.”

A Power Trio gone rogue, Montréal-based Just Got Death (JGD) matches the ingot-hard guitar flanges of Sam Shalabi with the surging bass thumps of Jonah Fortune and the nimble percussion accents of Michel F Côté in a program of seven originals that ricochet between punk-metal energy and sophisticated improvisation. Like a lapel flag pin which subtly declares the wearer’s convictions, proof of the band’s unique orientation is Côté’s understated drumming. Veteran of ensembles like Klaxon Gueule, his in-the-pocket or chronometer-like percussion pacing is smooth and non-disruptive. On tunes such as Vagrazo Hallottkemek and Early parasitic being for instance, his relaxed, steadfast rhythms create a solid tapestry upon which adornments, in the form of Shalabi’s finger-picking that sharpen notes with mandolin or banjo-like twangs, plus Fortune’s busy string slides and aggressive beat rolling, create appropriate adornments.

Like a thriller’s surprise ending however, this exposition only tells one part of Miella Totomi’s story. JGD’s other interest appears to be in updating to the 21st Century, the variant of jazz-rock-psychedelic fusion that permeated 1970s music. On several tracks gurgles and guffaws from Craig Pedersen’s muted trumpet and sputtering echoes from Guillaume Dostaller’s JX3P and Wurlitzer add vaporous embellishments to the redwood tough bottom created by the rhythm section. Especially notable is Non monotono where the electric keyboardist’s slide-whistle-like peeps bond with the guitarist’s buzzing top-of-neck frails to create a solid mass of pulsating timbres. This too-bulky mixture is only deflated by the trumpeter, whose grace notes provide needed lightness. Elsewhere, before disconnected Wurlitzer wiggles and snapping guitar spirals prevent interludes from breaking their moorings and fly away, Fortune’s consistent ostinato firmly ground them. This type of skillful in-the-moment expansion and recovery underlines the strength JGD displays throughout the disc. The remaining question is why a band that plays such intricate, life-affirming music chose a downer designation as its name?

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15 March 2017
By Roland Torres in SilenceAndSound (France), March 15, 2017

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Les musiques d’Urnos sont la réponse de temps ancrés dans le présent d’un passé fantasmé à la beauté tumultueuse et captivante. Un opus d’ethno-musique poétique aux courbes utopiques hanté par l’imagination et le désir de faire rêver. Intriguant.”

C’est à un voyage dans le temps auquel nous invite le compositeur québécois André Hamel via Les musiques d’Urnos, imaginant une époque lointaine, 5000 ans avant JC, où résonnaient les mélodies d’une civilisation disparue originaire des plaines de l’Indus et qui aurait laissé les bribes des premières annotations musicales et dont les instruments ont été reconstruits pour mener à bien cette création.

Si les 9 titres sont le fruit de l’imagination d’André Hamel, ils ont ce pouvoir évocateur qui transperce l’auditeur de par ses sonorités envoutantes, la cornemuse prenant des airs de passeur temporel portant entre ses notes le souffle de temps anciens.

Il n’y a qu’à fermer les yeux pour se voir projeter en arrière, dans une cour pleine de musiciens virevoltants s’affairant à donner vie à des mélodies, conçues pour plonger les sens dans un tourbillon de pulsations antiques ayant traversé les siècles pour s’échouer sur nos rivages à la modernité éculée.

Les musiques d’Urnos sont la réponse de temps ancrés dans le présent d’un passé fantasmé à la beauté tumultueuse et captivante. Un opus d’ethno-musique poétique aux courbes utopiques hanté par l’imagination et le désir de faire rêver. Intriguant.

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1 March 2017
By George Kanzler in The New York City Jazz Record (USA), March 1, 2017

Press Clipping

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1 March 2017
By Will Pearson in The WholeNote (Canada), March 1, 2017

Press Clipping

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1 March 2017
By Peter Margasak in Bandcamp daily (USA), March 1, 2017

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“Since forming in 1999, Montréal’s Quatuor Bozzini have steadily ascended to become not only one of the most daring string quartets in Canada, but in the entire world. The consistently bring both an exquisite touch and a refined sensibility to music that demands invisible rigor.”

Since forming in 1999, Montréal’s Quatuor Bozzini have steadily ascended to become not only one of the most daring string quartets in Canada, but in the entire world. The consistently bring both an exquisite touch and a refined sensibility to music that demands invisible rigor. In recent years, they’ve earned acclaim for their peerless readings of music by Swiss Wandelweiser Collective composer Jürg Frey, but they’ve also been key proponents of lesser-known composers from their homeland, including Martin Arnold and Simon Martin.

This new offering focuses on the music of Christopher Butterfield, an influential Canadian figure whose position at the University of Victoria has impacted scores of young composers over the last few decades. His own work isn’t as well known as it should be, but Trip certainly provides a good opportunity to catch up. The five pieces here span over two decades — the two most recent compositions, Trip (2008) and Fall, (2013) were written specifically for Quatuor Bozzini. The earliest piece here, Lullaby, is a piece for string sextet; its tightly-controlled moods are conveyed at a hush except for some bracing, hair-raising interruptions that subside as suddenly as they appear. Over time, Butterfield has embraced chance in his process: the solo violin piece Clinamen, for example, is shaped largely by short phrases printed on eighty cards to be mixed at will by the performer, while the aleatoric nature of the four-movement title piece produces unpredictable harmonies within a relatively fixed structure, changing the nature of the work with every new performance.

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