Dolf Mulder, Vital, no 1183, 13 mai 2019Playing with timbre and pitch the music deeply resonates, and is very expressive and emotional in its own way. In a great performance by Quator Bozzini and Maranda!
Dolf Mulder, Vital, 29 avril 2019Derome is well known as an improviser and jazz musician. But it is really a joy to have him here as a composer…
Dolf Mulder, Vital, 29 avril 2019In all its virtuosity there is also pure rawness in her performance that is loaden with her emotional energy.
Dolf Mulder, Vital, 25 mars 2019… this is an album of enormous contrasts…
The profiled Quatuor Bozzini started in 1999 and interested mainly on contemporary music. They make their own decisions in choosing and producing their programs, never taking the easy way. Over the years they built up the impressive experience and premiered hundreds of compositions. About 20 CDs appeared filled with works by John Cage, Phil Niblock, James Tenney, Gyula Csapó, etc., etc. This time they concentrate on a composer from their homeland Canada, Simon Martin. Martin is a composer and producer of contemporary concert music, operating in the footsteps of Harry Partch, La Monte Young and James Tenney, implying a focus on natural intonation. With Musique d’art they set their teeth in an hour-long, five-movement composition for string quintet. Besides the Bozzini sisters and Allisa Cheung and Clemens Merkel, they are joined here by Pierre-Alexandre Maranda playing the double bass. Earlier Quator Bozzini performed work by Martin: Icebergs et Soleil de minuit — Quatuor en blanc (2007). But Musique d’Art is a welcome next step. The work is built from extended dissonant and abrasive sound entities, moving on like a massive tectonic plate, with a very differentiated sound spectrum at a micro level. In the second part there occur some dramatic changes where the music changes into harsh and noisy sections. Overall with this composition Martin offers an intriguing exercise in combining noise and music, that reminded me at moments of the work of Rumanian composer Iancu Dumitrescu. Playing with timbre and pitch the music deeply resonates, and is very expressive and emotional in its own way. In a great performance by Quator Bozzini and Maranda!
Jean Derome, composer and improviser from Montréal is one of the most active forces in the Ambiances Magnétiques-scene, that was co-founded by him in the early 80s scene. Sudoku pour Pygmées is his most recent release in a series of uncountable releases over the decades. This one has Derome as a composer. The CD counts three compositions for a large ensemble. Composed for different occasions over a period of 20 years. The title piece was composed in 2010, 7 danses (pour «15») in 1989 and 5 pensées (pour le caoutchouc dur) in 2001. They have been re-orchestrated by Derome for an extended line up of Dangerous Zhoms: Jean Derome (flute, baritone saxophone, composer), Guillaume Dostaler (piano), Pierre Cartier (double bass), Pierre Tanguay (drum set), Jean Rene (conductor), Guido Del Fabbro (violin), Lori Freedman (bass clarinet, clarinet), Andre Leroux (tenor saxophone, clarinet), Craig Pedersen (trumpet), Julie Houle (tuba), Bernard Falaise (electric guitar) and Olivier Maranda (percussion). For the title piece, Derome took inspiration from the Sudoku puzzle, a square of 45 units that Derome divided into 5 groups of 9. He composed nine canons and created a polyphonic whole, which is a very musically complex and enjoyable work that started with playing with a non-musical game. 7 Danses (1989) is a work that plays with contrast in styles and genres. Seven short miniatures, moving between one and four minutes, are dressed in different musical styles: rock, jazz, shuffle, waltz, etc. Concluding composition 5 pensées (pour le caoutchouc dur), was originally composed for Vancouver’s Hard Rubber Orchestra in 2001, is likewise a journey through different moods en thoughts. The second part refers to Monk, the third one to Ellington. Derome is well known as an improviser and jazz musician. But it is really a joy to have him here as a composer of very well constructed, though not renewing chamber music.
Lori Freedman is a very profiled Montréal-based clarinettist, improviser and performer of contemporary composed material, by others as well by her own hand. She worked over the years with diverse composers and performers like Maurice Kagel, Joëlle Léandre, Ab Baars, etc. Excess is her latest recording and documents her solo program The Virtuosity of Excess and has Freedman performing six compositions by Richard Barrett, Brian Ferneyhough, Paul Steenhuisen, Paolo Perezzani, Raphaël Cendo and one by herself. In 2016 she toured eleven cities in North America, and I guess the recording took place afterwards. Besides bass clarinet and contrabass clarinet, freedman plays kick drum, electronics and voice. Thematically this turns is about excess: ‘With this project, I wanted to discover the beauty of the extremes, exploit them and embody them in the music’, Freedman explains. With these, she is pushing the limits of what is possible on the low clarinets. In all its virtuosity there is also pure rawness in her performance that is loaden with her emotional energy. By far the oldest composition is Time and Motion Study I composed in 1977 by New Complexity composer Brian Ferneyhough. Maybe most close the theme of excess is the opening work Interference composed by Richard Barrett in 2000. This work starts with very expressive vocals by Freedman screaming, growling and shrieking, that after a while a changed for equally growling, etc. playing of the contrabass clarinet, supplemented with some kick drum. Also, the closing work Décombres by Raphaël Cendo is a very dramatic and extravagant work for contrabass clarinet and disturbing electronic noise. Her own composition Withwhatbecomes (2016) is in contrast with the above-mentioned works in the sense that we stay more in calm and quiet regions of the contrabass clarinet, with parts that are almost of a lyrical nature.
Danielle Palardy Roger is a percussionist, composer and improviser. She is part of the Montréal scene since the early 80s, known for her work with Wonder Brass, Justine, Ensemble SuperMusique, etc. She has many records out on Ambiances Magnétiques. With her latest work Cannibale she created a musical satire, showing cannibalism in all its forms, proposing capitalism is one of the most recent forms. Cannibalism dwells in us as mankind and continues to surface in one-way or the other. Okay a satire, but a very serious topic. Performers are Isaiah Ceccarelli (drums, voice), Michel F Côté (electronics), André Duchesne (electric guitar), Joane Hétu (alto sax, narration), Elizabeth Lima (clarinet), Ida Toninato (baritone sax), Alexandre St-Onge (electric bass, electronics) and Danielle Palardy Roger herself percussion. All instrumentalists also contribute with vocals. The performers are well-known forces from the Ambiances Magnétiques scene and have a rare appearance of veteran André Duchesne. The music is very diverse, not strange as the material is composed of five of the instrumentalists composed and makes a theatrical ensemble of styles, with dramatic and intense vocal work by narrator Hétu. Some works like La victoire du guerrier are plain rock, whereas other tracks are far more experimental. Musically this is an album of enormous contrasts, illustrating the different faces of the phenomenon of cannibalism.