Amore: Compact-compact 1

Roxanne Turcotte

… her style of cinema for the ear relying strongly on synthesized music and sound collage. AllMusic, USA

… an impressionistic love story with voices, sound effects, samples and rhythms… Splendid E-Zine, USA

  • Canada Council for the Arts

CD (IMED 9413)

  • Label: empreintes DIGITALes
  • IMED 9413
  • 1994
  • UCC 771028941322
  • Total duration: 34:33
  • Crystal case
  • 125 mm × 142 mm × 6 mm
  • 80 g

On the web

Download (IMED 9413_NUM)


Seasoned With Passion, Humor and… Love

Amore (Love) is a tale told through the language of sound. A cinematic approach conveys images and sensations, evoking various destinations midst an amorous universe. Clichés, ‘forbidden’ people and places, wild love stories with a Romanesque flavor. Fiction for the imagination made real, becoming deep musical breaths.

Cinema plays a fundamental role in the musical creative process. The synopsis of the five tableaux presents themes of love: the heart, seduction, waiting, desire, secrets, the unexpected and travel… The music itself becomes an image. The movie theater, the main setting for this story, is still the ideal place for the clandestine tryst. Brushing up against the hand of the man (or woman) beside you, a stranger whose presence is disarming. The only light the shining screen and the illuminated exit sign which divulge an aura of intimacy. The darkness obscures and the sound conceals the unforeseen events of the evening…

On the imaginary screen, these unnatural, untouchable characters become part and parcel of the script, and thusly almost real. These characters, symbolized by human voices, remain fastened to the music, like the images imprisoned in a comic strip, like the images caught on film. They never die; always heroic, they exist only in and of the story.

The sound materials used to evoke the themes are divided into four categories:

  1. those of a suggestive nature — the rings of a telephone, unwanted calls, the heart, musical themes (French folk songs such as: Auprès de ma blonde, Reviens veux-tu?), club music… realistic treatment of the material and anecdotal sounds;
  2. the dream-like: synthesized sounds, sampled sounds and those manipulated to alter the source material, the appearance of multiethnic influences in the various musical worlds;
  3. the voice: human voices represent unidentified characters and explain the situations; and
  4. a leitmotif: rhythmic, suggesting movement, changing location, a destination.

The musical structure is based on human breathing. This impetuous element of love, the impetus of life itself, is marked by amassment leading to climax, a change in the cycle, an ending. The alternating cycle of tension and release is in some way an evolution, a progression, the passing of time, the heart, a breath of life and… a catastrophe! We find this expressed in the repetitive rhythm of the music, in the contours of each tableaux, the leitmotif as well as in the finale: a vague idea of what might be construed as an end, or as an eternal beginning.

Transposed into a musical form, breathing is conjured by extra-musical parameters, such as the lunar cycle, life and death, natural transformations. This form is the constant renewal of matter, of the state-of-being, the ever spiraling growth of the chambered nautilus: Kalpa and Pralaya, Yin and Yang, T’ien-tai, Dhikr… a universal phenomenon. As we grow, the world over respires, aspires with all its might, whatever the medium: music, art, different beliefs or creeds, meditation or prayer…

Amore is seduction, passion and… a breath of life.

Roxanne Turcotte, Montréal [i-94]

Some recommended items
In the press


François Couture, AllMusic, September 1, 2001

Roxanne Turcotte’s activities are diversified, to say the least. Yet, even with a resume that includes a keyboardist role in a rock group, electroacoustic composer and children music composer, she barely made a dent in the music world. Her first album, Amore, was released in 1994.

Born in Montréal in 1960, Turcotte always stayed in the big city. First and foremost a keyboardist, she began in rock and jazz groups, recording an LP with Kaméléon in 1982. Not shy of genre crossings, she entered the Master program in electroacoustic music at the Université de Montréal, studying its secrets with Marcelle Deschênes and Francis Dhomont while also studying piano and composition with Serge Garant. She began creating electroacoustic music, but also music for multimedia projects and, surprisingly, children music, each aspect of her career permeating the others. In 1994 the prestigious record label empreintes DIGITALes released her first CD of electroacoustic music, Amore. The reception was mixed, her style of cinema for the ear relying strongly on synthesized music and sound collage. She participated to the 1999 and 2000 editions of the Futura Festival in Crest (France) and the 2001 Bourges Festival.

… her style of cinema for the ear relying strongly on synthesized music and sound collage.

At a Glance Reviews

George Zahora, Splendid E-Zine, November 8, 1999

Roxanne Turcotte spins an impressionistic love story with voices, sound effects, samples and rhythms, based upon Roland Barthes’s book A Lover’s Discourse. Newcomers to electroacoustic music may find Amore particularly appealing; it uses many identifiable, untreated “real world” sounds and employs a more structured, linear narrative than other empreintes DIGITALes releases, grounding even its most experimental moments in comforting familiarity. It’s still a lot of fun—especially the conversational T’es le fun téléphone.

… an impressionistic love story with voices, sound effects, samples and rhythms…


Ned Bouhalassa, Contact!, no. 8:2, June 1, 1995

The second disc, Turcotte’s Amore, contains the six parts of a single piece (with the same title as that of the CD) that necessitated four years of work (1988-92) in various studios. Featuring the spoken and sung voices of Judith Bergeron, Daniel Leduc and the composer herself, Amore is an electroacoustic tale, ‘seasoned with passion, humor and… love’ (CD booklet notes). Though Turcotte’s approach to storytelling brings to mind the work of other francophone composers, like France’s Pierre Henry and Michel Chion, she does not shy away from pop-influenced composition and timbres. While some of her instrumental writing suffers from the limitations of her tools (RAM-limited samplers), the spoken texts are witty and focused on the main theme (love). Relating the telephone dialogues and subsequent preparation rituals of two would-be lovers planning a date at the movies, T’es le fun téléphone is unquestionably the strongest section of Amore.


Rick MacMillan, SOCAN, Paroles & Musique, no. 2:2, February 1, 1995

Inscrit dans un recueil de six CD de musique électroacoustique canadienne, ce disque de 35 minutes se divise en cinq tableaux dépeignant des thèmes sur l’amour. Récipiendaire de deux prix de composition de la CAPAC dans les années 80, la compositrice montréalaise Roxanne Turcotte réalise un écran imaginaire à l’aide de matériaux sonores tels la sonnerie d’un téléphone, les sons de synthèse et la voix humaine pour représenter «la séduction, la passion et.. un souffle de vie.»


Albert Durand, Revue & Corrigée, no. 20, June 1, 1994

Dans cette série “compact-compact”, on trouve aussi Amore de Roxanne Turcotte: de l’électro branché avec une tendance musique de danse, un univers proche du clip rempli d’anecdotes et d’images du quotidien amoureux. Claire-voie de Wende Bartley: la voix est au centre du travail, qu’elle soit en direct, dans une pièce mixte, ou enregistree. Manipulée, transformée, elle touche souvent à une dimension quasi-sacrée. Alchimie de Mario Rodrigue: cinq pièces d’une même facture.

Manipulée, transformée, elle touche souvent à une dimension quasi-sacrée.

More texts

  • Dominique Olivier, Circuit, no. 5:2, June 4, 1994