10+1 Adventurous Releases from Canada (2015)

Nicolas Bernier – Frequencies (Sound Quanta)

The project “frequencies (sound quanta)” represents the audio version of “frequencies (light quanta)”, a sound and light installation commissioned by LABoral Centro de Arte y Creación Industrial, Gijón, Spain (August – October 2014).

Taking the quantum – the smallest measurable value of energy – as its conceptual basis, the project metaphorically creates relationships between basic quantum physics principles applied to the audiovisual creative process: particles, probabilities, wave/particle duality and discontinuity. Structured around these notions, the composition stems from 100 sound fragments that develop themselves aleatorically, generating an ever expanding yet disruptive form.

The release takes the form of a limited edition of 100 transparent acrylic panels. Each one is laser cut with a unique design, replicating the 100 panels of the physical installation. People who order the release will therefore receive a totally unique art object. The release comes with a card + download code, 100 sound files and a software* (programmed by Ennio Mazzon) allowing to randomly play the soundfiles.
Co-produced by Farmacia901 and Mote Studio.

Joda Clément – I Hope You Like The Universe

Vancouver-based composer Joda Clément has been widely praised for qualities in his work that could be described as natural: unassuming complexity that elegantly reduces, and an indifference to overt emotional direction. I hope you like the universe brilliantly continues this path, as Clément blends field recordings, shifting synth textures, and instrumental performance. These pieces vividly suggest both exterior and interior environments and the boundaries between them, like peering through layers of windowpanes from inside a still room. Here, Clément’s work is both industrial and intriguingly human, hinting at people and actions that might create certain daytime and nighttime sound environments while resisting identification.

France Jobin + Fabio Perletta

Mirror neurons represent a distinctive class of cells that fire both when an animal executes an action and when it observes another individual performing the same action. Discovered by Italian neurophysiologist Giacomo Rizzolatti and his team at the University of Parma while doing a research on the neural representation of motor movements in monkeys, the precise function and influence of these neurons has become one of the most important topic in neuroscience. They have been linked to many behaviours and abilities, from empathy to learning by imitation and language acquisition, as well as implicated in conditions such as autism and other brain disorders. These findings suggest that the mirror neuron system plays a key role in our ability to experience empathy.

Initiated by sound artists France Jobin and Fabio Perletta, Mirror Neurons is a media-project investigating the notion of empathy and physical distance. The entire album is the result of extended sound files exchange between Montréal (Canada) and Roseto degli Abruzzi (Italy). Each of the pieces is based on rough sounds and their consequent re-working, listening and reaction, processing and imitation. The ongoing process helped the artists to draw inspiration in terms of stimuli for the act of composing itself in two very distant cities, different climate, time zones and languages.

Kara-Lis Coverdale – Aftertouches

Aftertouches playfully exploits the systemic nature of a post-sacred and post-instrument world, continuing Kara-Lis Coverdale’s exploration of coded realism and virtual transfiguration. Through an optimistic lens, Aftertouches explores and celebrates the multiple voices of the machine. Synthetic instruments sourced from VSTs, sound banks, and personal archives are arranged into holograms of dreams once inspired by physical origin. Through digital superimposition processes, instrument profiles mutate and take on new forms of articulation. Crystalline organs support and prop plastic voices and insistent water flutes dance with metallically chromatic snake-like motifs in vignettes of compositional schizophrenia. Absurd and delightful fusions seething through temporal portholes are unexpectedly swiped left, enveloped by dense clouds of lament and remembrance.

Roger Tellier-Craig – Visites Possibles

“The music on this collection was written specifically to accompany video pieces by Sabrina Rattté. The audio for these pieces was generated using analog and modular synthesizers, computer and sampling devices.”

Jesse Osborne-Lanthier – From A Flawed Apex Which Led To The Head

“This album was made for labour equivalence. A tax may be defined as a “pecuniary burden laid upon individuals or property to support the government […], a payment exacted by legislative authority.” A tax “is not a voluntary payment or donation, but an enforced contribution, exacted pursuant to legislative authority” and is “any contribution imposed by government […] whether under the name of toll, tribute, tallage, gabel, impost, duty, custom, excise, subsidy, aid, supply, or other name.”

Tracks 1-4 were composed using mangled / edited versions of certain sounds sampled from Hobo Cubes (FDG -) tracks from his ‘Apex Ideals’ 12 LP. The selected sounds were merged and sidechained to recycled / licensefree sounds taken from various sample packs found in my 2007 Sony Vaio computer’s cracked FL Studio 6 soundbank. The sounds were then subjected to temporal and sonic processing with many subnational abstract entities in mind, rendering them unrecognizable. The second half of this album strongly reflects my intention to exert labyrinthine settings onto an audience, however my wallet does not, and so this remains an imaginary endeavour.”

Produced, performed, conceptualized and recorded by Jesse Osborne-Lanthier in Berlin, Montreal, Spain and Paris on exorbitant amounts of marijuana from 2013 to 2015. Inner tape sleeve artwork by Jesse Osborne-Lanthier.

Demonstration Synthesis + M. Salaciak – DS16

Daniel Leznoff and Matthew Salaciak are musicians from Montreal. Daniel is currently the guitarist and keyboardist in Pierre Kwenders’ touring band, a gig that has brought him to France, Italy and across Canada. Demonstration Synthesis is his anything-goes project, driven by curiosity, technology and musical freedom. Matthew has spent the last few years building a recording studio and has recently begun putting out music under the name Variant, a project that sees him working with Montreal native Max Segal. DS16 was one of the first complete projects finished in Matthew’s studio, with him handling recording and engineering duties while co-producing and performing with Daniel. In true DS expedited fashion, the project was recorded in just three short sessions.

Sarah Davachi – Barons Court

“Barons Court” is the debut full length album by Canadian electroacoustic composer Sarah Davachi, following short run releases on Important Records’ Cassauna imprint and Full Spectrum. Trained at Mills College, Davachi’s work marries an academic approach to synthesis and live instrumentation with a preternatural attunement to timbre, pacing, and atmosphere. While the record employs a number of vintage and legendary synthesizers, including Buchla’s 200 and Music Easel, an EMS Synthi, and Sequential Circuit’s Prophet 5, Davachi’s approach to her craft here is much more in line with the longform textural minimalism of Eliane Radigue than it is with the hyper-dense modular pyrotechnics of the majority of her synthesist contemporaries. Three of the album’s five compositions feature acoustic instrumentation (cello, flue, harmonium, oboe, and viola, played by Davachi and others) which is situated alongside a battery of keyboards and synths and emphasizes the composerly aspect of her work. “heliotrope” slowly billows into being with a low, keeling drone that is gradually married to an assortment of sympathetic, aurally complex sounds to yield a rich fantasia of beat frequencies and overtones. Later, “wood green” opens almost inaudibly, with lovely eddies of subtly modulating synth clouds evolving effortlessly into something much larger, as comforting and familiar as it is expansive. In an era in which the synthesizer inarguably dominates the topography of experimental music, Davachi’s work stands alone – distinctive, patient, and beautiful.

Jonathan Kawchuk – North

Jonathan Kawchuk is originally from Canada, and for the last few years has been living and recording in natural environments across Europe, North America, and Asia. He has played back and re-recorded his compositions in the forests of Norway, the Pacific Northwest, and Indonesia in order to try to steal a bit of their natural beauty. Kawchuk has worked on albums for Nico Muhly and Ben Frost, as well as an assistant sound technician for the Philip Glass Ensemble.

Esmerine – Lost Voices

Montréal chamber rock ensemble Esmerine return with the new full-length album Lost Voices, the most dynamic and incendiary record of the group’s career, following its highly-acclaimed and Juno award-winning 2013 release Dalmak. Led by co-founders Bruce Cawdron (Godspeed You! Black Emperor) on various mallet instruments and Rebecca Foon (Thee Silver Mt. Zion, Saltland) on cello, Esmerine also includes drummer/percussionist Jamie Thompson (The Unicorns, Islands, Little Scream) and multi-instrumentalist Brian Sanderson.

Veroníque Vaka – Erlendis

The title of Veroníque Vaka’s album Erlendis is an Icelandic word and would translate to English as a place that is foreign to you. Moving to a different country made her rethink the relation between classical music and soundscape. In this project, string ensemble, piano and field recording are at the core of her research. She explored the use of these elements, working with them as a living organism and experiencing them as a whole. The piece Hvönn was especially written for the pianist and composer Björn Pálmi Pálmason, with whom she also co-wrote the piano score of Verndari.

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