Sylvie Chenard

Océan Pour la Suite

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Océan Pour la Suite marks Montréal guitarist Sylvie Chenard's jump from self-releasing to label support. New blood for the Ambiances Magnétiques stables, she offers here 13 short duets (between 30 seconds and six and a half minutes) with three avant-garde musicians: household turntablist Martin Tétreault, saxophonist Maryse Poulin, and Shalabi Effect and Klaxon Gueule member Alexandre St-Onge, here playing "electronic mouth" (contact microphones placed in the mouth, yes) like in his project Undo with Christof Migone. Chenard is a multifaceted artist. For this particular album, she focuses on textural noise, playing the guitar like Keith Rowe's tabletop. Another reference would be what Marina Rosenfeld aims for in her Sheer Frost Orchestra. Only in "Peau de Pays" and a couple more pieces toward the end of the disc does what might be commonly referred to as "guitar playing" surface. Everywhere else, listeners float between live electro-acoustic constructions and echo-drenched drones. Chenard's presence is ominous and yet discreet, as the sound of her instrument meshes with her partner's. Electronics being the key to this album, pinpointing where one's action ends and the other's begins becomes a difficult and meaningless task. Each musician brings out a different side of her, but a special chemistry takes place with Tétreault, yielding the best tracks, rich and challenging. Océan à Vendre/For Sale, released a month later, contains music of a more exciting nature, but this CD will appeal to fans of electro-acoustic improv.

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