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Also available as a
12inch Vinyl LP
. *Purchase of this album direct from Experimedia in any format includes an instant download of the album with an exclusive bonus EP including an extended version of
, a non album track, and two remixes by
On Silver, multi-instrumentalist Charles-Eric Charrier directs his collaborators Ronan Benoit, and Cyril Secq, through a lesson in tension and release. Dismissing genre boundaries Silver deftly plants its roots on a plateau in a strange land somewhere between the worlds of psychedelic post-rock, electronic, improv jazz and modern composition. Over the course of five movements, Charrier and company illustrate how to successfully kaleidoscope an eclectic range of influences into a cohesive and unique whole. From the smokey sludged psych rock blues jam of
, the jazz lounge pitter-pat of brushed snares and tapped hats coalesced with analog synth and brass vibrations on
, to the plucked and bowed folk strings and hand drums of
, Silver draws a new musical blueprint for the post-everything generation.
Charles-Eric Charrier, half of the duo MAN alongside Rasim Biyikli known most recently for their 2005 album Helping Hand on Sub Rosa, has recorded multiple albums, film scores, and collaborative projects with painters and choreographers. He also writes and records solo as Oldman, and has collaborated with numerous artists and musicians including Sid Toure (Thrill Jockey), Mathias Delplanque (Lena), Rob Mazurek, Jerome Paressant (abraxas projekt), The Clogs, Orange Blossom, Rhys Chatham, Teamforest, The Floating Roots Orchestra, and Le Coq.
1. 21 Echoes Short
2. 12 FRom
3. 6 I
4. 9 Moving
5. 9 (8) Electricity
1. 21 Echoes (Extended)
2. 11 An
3. 12 From (Field Rotation Remix)
4. 12 From (Saffronkeira Remix)
All songs by: Ronan Benoit, Charles-Eric Charrier, Cyril Secq
Directions in music by: Charles-Eric Charrier
Recorded & Mixed by: Cyril Secq
Produced by: Cyril Secq and Charles-Eric Charrier
Mastered by: Taylor Deupree
Photography & Design by: Jeremy Bible
Distribution provided exclusively by:
North America - Forced Exposure -
United Kingdom - Forte -
Japan - P*Dis -
Rest of world and digital - Morr Music -
Fluid Radio Review
Sound engineer friends often tell me drums are the hardest component of live music to record well - it takes hours to mic a drum kit up, and wrestling with the results for hours is often tedious screwdriver work. It's one easy way to gauge the proficiency of the engineer, so it's the first thing a lot of wonks listen to and comment on when they assess music.
So it's a fairly brassy and confident move to open with over a minute's worth of unaccompanied drum work on Charles-Eric Charrier's new release "Silver", putting both the musicianship and recording quality front and centre for all to see (or hear). The instrumentation that follows does not display any less confidence, almost swaggering in its surety. There are two distinctly separate and equally crucial elements that make up the record - the aggressive technical virtuosity of the players, and the intelligent sound design and mastering of the audio engineers.
So colour me surprised to find, upon examining the liner notes, that the players and engineers are one and the same. Charrier is listed as a producer, and Cyril Secq (perhaps best known for his work in Astrid) is listed amongst the players and also credited with recording and mixing.
The release information from Experimedia drops the phrase "post-everything" in relation to genre, and that's an entirely appropriate description; there are familiar elements to a lot of the sounds, but they are approached and collated in such a way that the final result remains distinctive and original.
Opening track '21 Echoes Short' is a good example of this - the aforementioned drum intro blending into a lithe repeating bass motif, over which overdriven and reverbed guitars are layered. The jazz/Americana/proto-punk elements are defined and refined over the space of just shy of nine minutes, and the drums again cement themselves as the backbone of the exercise.
'12 From' has a Cinemascope introduction; cymbals washing across the speakers. The sound design becomes the focus, with the playing sounding like it's emanating from inside the filament of a light globe. Hydroponic experimental jazz.
'6I' is an exercise in dynamics, starting with searing post-rock guitar, then devolving into minimalist instrumental clatter and tweak. Some interesting Eastern dynamics from all involved, with some deliberately under-produced immediacy.
'9 Moving' continues on in this vein - a restrained and loping drone-esque patter that reaffirms the confidence of all involved.
As a whole, the release is something of an achievement on all levels - it captures the immediacy and consideration from the players involved, the diligent efforts in their audio capture and it is capped off by the stellar mastering of the ubiquitous Taylor Deupree. Deupree has drawn out the character of the piece, and polished it to a shine without removing any of the dust. "Silver" is a rewarding experience, with plenty to offer those with an interest in either sound or music. To those with an interest in both, it'll be a reward in itself.
We're in the process of trying to organise a chat with the people involved over the coming weeks. Stay tuned.
The album drops as both vinyl and deluxe packaged CD on 25th January 2011.
"On Silver, multi-instrumentalist Charles-Eric Charrier directs his collaborators Ronan Benoit, and Cyril Secq, through a lesson in tension and release. Dismissing genre boundaries Silver deftly plants its roots on a plateau in a strange land somewhere between the worlds of psychedelic post-rock, electronic, improv jazz and modern composition. Over the course of five movements, Charrier and company illustrate how to successfully kaleidoscope an eclectic range of influences into a cohesive and unique whole. From the smokey sludged psych rock blues jam of 21 Echoes, the jazz lounge pitter-pat of brushed snares and tapped hats coalesced with analog synth and brass vibrations on 12 From, to the plucked and bowed folk strings and hand drums of 9 Moving, Silver draws a new musical blueprint for the post-everything generation.
Charles-Eric Charrier, half of the duo MAN alongside Rasim Biyikli known most recently for their 2005 album Helping Hand on Sub Rosa, has recorded multiple albums, film scores, and collaborative projects with painters and choreographers. He also writes and records solo as Oldman, and has collaborated with numerous artists and musicians including Sid Toure (Thrill Jockey), Mathias Delplanque (Lena), Rob Mazurek, Jérôme Paressant (abraxas projekt), The Clogs, Orange Blossom, Rhys Chatham, Teamforest, The Floating Roots Orchestra, and Le Coq." - Experimedia
- Review by Alex Gibson for Fluid Radio.
Fluid Radio Interview
So impressed were we with our advance copy of Experimedia's "Silver" by Charles-Eric Charrier that we immediately asked to be able to speak to him about the album. Charles and co-producer/engineer/musician Cyril Secq were good enough to take some time out and answer some questions about the recording and their plans for the release.
Charles is a consummate creator - artist, musician, collaborator, painter; he was also good enough to provide us with some copies of his paintings to run alongside the discussion. There are also more you can view on his Myspace page.
Charles, you're credited in the liner notes with "directions in music". Does this mean you're the coordinator of the players, or the driving force behind the compositions?
Charles: It's two things - it's my spirituality driving the project, in the first time, one idea comes to the "surface" and I'm falling in love with it, second time I try to explain or talk with the guys about what I feel and after, I leave them free to play what they feel. I'm a sort of "guardian" to the first way...
And the second thing is a wink of an eye to Miles Davis.
Was the material improvised in the studio, or was it rehearsed beforehand?
Charles: Alone at home, I played and just after I shared that with the guys, not in a finished way but like possible directions, during the recording, we leave the things that happened, it's more a question of own opening.
Cyril: Maybe, to be more precise, Charles had bass lines and they were recorded live with drums; the idea was to leave space for other instruments. That was the first session. Then we did "overdubs", mainly guitars and keyboards. It was to respect the pieces as skeletons but also to lead them elsewhere, keeping immediacy. It was to keep in mind the urgency and not to spend too much time on each instrument track (it is mostly a one shot recording session).
Yourself and Cyril are listed as the producers, and Cyril is listed as the recorder and mixer. Does this mean the project was entirely recorded by yourselves?
Charles: Yes, true... I don't like professional's studios, I don't like to leave money by the window for nothing... but the first reason and principal reason is the fact I like how Cyril recorded the materials and the sharing between us.
Cyril: I have been recording bands, mainly mine (astrid) for about ten years and I like that, and Charles knew it.
Sound is a personal thing and approach, hard to leave in another's hands...
In that way we can spend time on it, having distance from the record and go back whenever we want to.
Where was the project recorded, and how long did it take? Did it take time, or did it happen quickly?
Charles: We recorded in my house, live drum and bass, a second time in Cyril's house for the rest...for the second part of your question it's not really easy to answer with precision, the sessions weren't longer (something like 3 days) but spread out one year.
How did Taylor Deupree become involved in the mastering? Were there specific aspects of the recording you wanted highlighted, or was his brief to approach it with fresh ears?
Charles: This is a story between Jeremy Bible, (Experimedia) and Taylor, and it was a good idea because Taylor understood well "Silver" and his mastering went in the same way, a good sharing between us. It was a choice to leave him free when Jeremy proposed to me Taylor's work.
Are there plans to tour the release in 2011, or are you planning to record again?
Charles: Not tour, but some gigs. Yes, another recording called "Petite Soeur" with the same guys and a percussionist... and a project articulate in 3 parts. First, tapes and voices. Second, viole de gambe, 2 metalophones and tapes. The last : percussions, bass, electric piano, prepared guitar and electroacoustique with toys.
I'd say that if those shows came anywhere near your vicinity, they'd be worth going out of your way to see.
Thanks to Jeremy@Experimedia for putting us onto Charles and Cyril, and thanks to both of them for their work in overcoming the language barrier - any mistakes in translation are mine and mine alone.
"Silver" is released in January 2011, on vinyl and CD.
- Interview by Alex Gibson for Fluid Radio