Listening Diary

François Couture, Monsieur Délire, June 2, 2014

The great communicator Hélène Prévost, who was for a long time the lead new music presenter at Canada’s francophone state radio, just released her debut solo album. There is nothing summer-like about À la plage — “At the beach”, but it is actually a play on the French word “plage”, which also means “track” — it is the result of serious research on sounds and their mechanical and poetical interrelations. Ten tracks ranging from two to ten minutes, and each track has its own soundworld, though these soundworlds are all related. Disembodied sounds — rumbles, tweets, taps — sampled instruments (especially a guitar), fragments of conversations. This is abstract hörspiel, sound art that presents, that says, and then listeners draw their own narration or evocation from it. It’s a demanding listen, no doubt, but a rewarding one.

It’s a demanding listen, no doubt, but a rewarding one.