Two CDs of improvised music from the eminent Canadian label Ambiances Magnétiques.
The first is a meeting place for two accomplished improvisers and composers, Joëlle Léandre on double-bass and Danielle Palardy Roger on drums and percussion. Both artists have extensive discographies exploring a wide range of musical styles, and this is the first time they are working together. The music on this disc is challenging and complex. The double-bass is grating and hyperactive; the percussions flutter through the pieces as if on wings. Together these two elements create an incongruous mass of much vigour and skill… My desire though was to have the percussion become more prominent in the pieces — something that is accomplished quite nicely on coupes blanches for example. But on this piece and a handful of others there are vocal outbursts and chants by Joëlle that I feel the pieces could do without; the voice takes away from the immediacy of these explorations. But it is clear there is much passion and energy in these performances; listening to the recording makes me long to hear these performances live, where I feel this music would be better appreciated by its listeners.