Jalons (CD) Track listing detail

Vol d’Arondes

Francis Dhomont

  • Year of composition: 1999, 2001
  • Duration: 11:25
  • Instrumentation: 8-channel fixed medium
  • Commission: Musiques & Recherches

Stereo

ISRC CAD500315960

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits

Provence. A summer evening, the window open wide on the slowly darkening sky. Through this deep, blemishless blue, the flight of swallows: a strident, constantly changing feeding dance. The delicious night continues to fall. There are the sounds of the village preparing for the night festival; the echoes reach me. A jet begins its descent into Marignanne. How simple it all is!

It is a moment of pure, contemplative happiness, barely disturbed by a few familiar cares, which are quickly chased away. I think of Verlaine’s “The sky above the roof, so blue, so calm…”

This is music of memory: connotative, certainly, but not representational. It evokes and continues a previous work, Drôles d’oiseaux (1985-86), which provided some of the material for it.

The space, too, belongs to memory.

[English translation: Tom Carter]


Vol d’Arondes [Flight of Swallows] was realized in 1999 at the Métamorphoses d’Orphée multitrack studio (Ohain, Belgium) and premiered on November 21, 1999 during the 6th International Acousmatic Festival L’Espace du son in the XL Théâtre du Grand Midi (Brussels, Belgium). It was commissioned by Musiques & Recherches. The revised 8-channel version (2001) was premiered on 15 December 2001 at Espace GO in Montréal as part of the Rien à voir (10) concert series presented by Réseaux.


Premiere

  • November 21, 1999, L’Espace du son 1999: Créations octophoniques, XL Théâtre du Grand Midi, Brussels (Belgium)
  • December 15, 2001, Premiere of the revised 8-channel version: Rien à voir (10): concert solo: Nature / Artifice, Espace Go, Montréal (Québec)

Awards


About this recording

This version is a stereophonic reduction of the 8-track original realized in June 2002.

En cuerdas

Francis Dhomont

  • Year of composition: 1998
  • Duration: 11:25
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
  • Commission: Arturo Parra, with support from the CCA

Stereo

ISRC CAD500315970

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits

Commissioned by the Colombian guitarist Arturo Parra, En cuerdas (In the Strings) is the version for solo tape of Sol y sombra… L’espace des spectres, a work for guitar and tape that was co-written with Parra. The composition heard here is completely independent from that work.

Its sonic environment nevertheless remains one of strings that are plucked, rubbed and struck; but these are strings have been made virtual, transformed by computer processes and multiplied by electroacoustic writing. These are morphological variations that have been obtained primarily through the use of a variety of ‘instruments’ of the SYTER system at Ina-GRM (Paris, France).

Within this formal framework and the preliminary choices made with the software, I left myself, as always, a great deal of room for improvised “séquences-jeux.”

Certainly, these moments of pure intuition do not involve the sense of vertigo and the irreparable risks that are found in real improvisation, for the choices are made afterward, allowing only those ‘magic moments’ to remain. Half-way between chance and will, this is perhaps an attempt to reconcile Pascal’s “spirit of fineness and spirit of geometry.”

[English translation: Tom Carter]


En cuerdas was realized at the composer’s studio in 1998 and premiered on 15 May 1998 at the Festival international de musique actuelle de Victoriaville (Québec). It was commissioned by Arturo Parra with support from the Canada Council for the Arts (CCA). I would like to thank Arturo Parra, whose many textures and sounds make up the materials of this piece, as well as Ina-GRM, which was kind enough to open wide the doors of the SYTER studio to me. En cuerdas won the 1st Prize ex æquo of the Hungarian Radio’s EAR’99 International Competition of Electroacoustic Music (Budapest, Hungary, 1999) and was also a prizewinner at the competition Città di Udine (Italy, 1998). En cuerdas was recorded on the 1998 disc Contemporanea ’98 (Taukay 107) and on the 2000 disc Sonic Circuits VIII (Innova 117).


Premiere

  • May 15, 1998, FIMAV 1998: Parr(A)cousmatique, Cégep de Victoriaville, Victoriaville (Québec)

Awards

Les moirures du temps

Francis Dhomont

  • Year of composition: 1999-2000
  • Duration: 15:24
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
  • Commission: Réseaux des arts médiatiques, with support from the CCA

Stereo

ISRC CAD500315980

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits
To the composers and founders of Réseaux: Jean-François Denis, Gilles Gobeil, and Robert Normandeau

In the same way that the eye perceives the changing play of light on various shapes and textures of a given colour, the ear picks out the sparkles and shimmers that the minute variations of related sounds can produce.

“Uneven flattening of the grain, dull and bright areas, changing, gleaming and wavy aspects. Reflections.” These terms, borrowed from visual perception, find their equivalents in sound: instead of changes in space, changes in time. This is further pointed at by an anecdotal element, a sign of the passage of time, that punctuates the sound stream in three places: the beginning, the middle, and the end.

This scintillation was produced by processing much of the material with the SYTER real-time system at Ina-GRM in Paris. Certain characteristics, techniques and types of sound, chosen from the outset of the project because of their latent potentiality, were selected: these were harmonic timbre, accumulation, percussion / resonance, movement (trajectories, whirls), and dynamic contrast — the very things that give sound context and make it shimmer.

[English translation: Tom Carter]


Les moirures du temps [The Shimmering Ripples of Time] was realized in 1999 at the Syter studio of the Ina-GRM (Paris, France) and at the composer’s studio and premiered (under the working title Cosa mentale) on 20 February 1999 as part of the Rien à voir (5) concert series presented by Réseaux. Les moirures du temps was commissioned by Réseaux des arts médiatiques with support from the Canada Council for the Arts (CCA). It won First Prize in the Musica Nova 1999 International Competition of Electroacoustic Music (Prague, Czech Republic).


Premiere

  • February 20, 1999, Rien à voir (5): rétrospective 2, La Chapelle, Montréal (Québec)

Awards

Studio de nuit

Francis Dhomont

  • Year of composition: 1992
  • Duration: 3:00
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium

Stereo

ISRC CAD500315990

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits

Here we surprise the acousmotrope (by analogy with the heliotrope, that which turns toward hearing), engaged in his rituals and his creations, in a half-real, half-dreamed moment of nocturnal composition for Figures de la nuit / Faces of the Night, a work for radio commissioned by David Olds for the program Transfigured Night, on CKLN-FM in Toronto.

Along with the voice of the artist, we hear (in order of vocal appearance) those of Laurie Radford, Pierre Daboval, Justice Olsson, Marie Pelletier, Jean-François Denis, and Pierre Louet.

[English translation: Tom Carter]


Studio de nuit (Studio at Night) was realized at the composer’s studio in 1992 and premiered on 2 September 1995 as part of the Festival international d’art acousmatique Futura (Crest, France). Studio de nuit was recorded on the 1992 disc DISContact! 6.2 (CEC 92CD).


Premiere

  • September 2, 1995, Futura 95: Acousma international 12, Chapelle des Cordeliers, Crest (Drôme, France)

Lettre de Sarajevo

Francis Dhomont

  • Year of composition: 1995-96
  • Duration: 14:38
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
  • Commission: French State (Music Office)

Stereo

ISRC CAD500316000

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits
To victims everywhere: the dispossessed, the sacrificed, the forgotten

What can be said about Sarajevo that has not already been said? Faced with a deluge of triumphant cynicism, I was unable to content myself with the formal, esthetic games that are so dear to the composer. Perhaps this musical narcissism, this elegant disengagement, and this haughty ignorance (deceitful, surely, but this shouldn’t surprise) now appear quite derisory compared to the anguish we witness daily; ridiculous and, finally, untenable. And so, naively, I wanted to speak about the horror and the shame.

The title came to me, sudden and obvious: “Letter,” which can tell of the magnitude of the disaster and which at that same time can send a cry in the desert of nations; “Sarajevo,” because this city, like all too many others, symbolizes the tragic incoherency of the return to barbarity in our age.

Even though they may be common, how can one remain deaf to such provocations? It is a pessimistic report that, six years later, recent events give no sign of refuting.

[English translation: Tom Carter]


Lettre de Sarajevo [Letter from Sarajevo] was realized in 1995-96 at the Syter studio of the Ina-GRM (Paris, France) and at the composer’s studio and premiered on 22 February 1996 as part of the Festival Présences of Radio France in the Salle Olivier Messiaen of the Maison de Radio France (Paris, France). A first version, presented in August 1995 at the Festival d’art acousmatique Futura (Crest, France) under the title “Esquisse pour Sarajevo,” received the assistance of the Canada Council for the Arts (CCA). Lettre de Sarajevo was commissioned by the French State (Music Office) for the Festival d’art acousmatique Futura (Crest, France). Lettre de Sarajevo was recorded on the 1996 disc Sonic Circuits IV (Innova 113).


Premiere

  • August 30, 1995, Futura 95: Concert portrait, Éden, Crest (Drôme, France)
  • February 22, 1996, Premiere of the final version: Son-Mu 96, Festival Présences 96: Concert, Salle Olivier Messiaen — Maison de la radio, Paris (France)

Un autre Printemps

Francis Dhomont

  • Year of composition: 2000
  • Duration: 6:09
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
  • Commission: Uli Aumüller

Stereo

ISRC CAD500316010

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits
To Uli A. and Antonio V.

In composing this music for film, I had to follow rules that differ from those of non-incidental music: there were thematic directions that had to be respected, constraints that were imposed by the material (Vivaldi, the viola, a dog, the sound of a stream, and naturalism) and by the timing, allusions and references that had to be incorporated, and so on.

Un autre Printemps does, of course, echo Vivaldi’s famous concerto, which forms the thread that runs through the film. But the thread wanders, changes, and is recycled, with the result that the baroque work becomes a simple yet rich sound source, and one full of cultural connotations. The important place accorded the movement of water and its mutations corresponds to the metaphor of the effusiveness of spring that is so present on the screen. But here the sound of nature questions the nature of sound: the representational and referential elements of the opening slide closer and closer toward abstraction, with the aid of the treatments that distort the source material, and the music regains its integrity. By the end, the sound will have rejoined the meaning.

This approach to finding the beauty in sound as a means of organizing and structuring it reminds me of when I carved wood to earn my living, drawing my inspiration from form inherent in it. I tried in both cases to reconcile will and chance, conception and perception, and nature and artifice.

[English translation: Tom Carter]


Un autre Printemps [Another Spring] was commissioned by the German filmmaker Uli Aumüller for his film Mein Kino für die Ohren (My Cinema for the Ears), a co-production by ARTE and ZDF, and realized at the composer’s studio in 2000. Un autre Printemps was premiered during the European telecast of the film on 14 March 2001 and on 15 December 2001 as part of the Rien à voir (10) concert series presented by Réseaux in Montréal (Québec). Thanks to Jean René, viola, for some strong materiologies. The work won 2nd prize at the Hungarian Radio’s EAR’01 International Competition of Electroacoustic Music (Budapest, Hungary, 2001). Mein Kino für die Ohren was recorded in March 2002 on DVD-Video by Bridge Records (Bridge 9117).


Premiere

  • December 15, 2001, Rien à voir (10): concert solo: Nature / Artifice, Espace Go, Montréal (Québec)

Awards

Drôles d’oiseaux

Francis Dhomont

  • Year of composition: 1985-86, 2001
  • Duration: 14:51
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
  • Commission: French State (Music Office), GMEB

Stereo

ISRC CAD500316020

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits
To Françoise Barrière, Christian Clozier, Jean-Claude Leduc, and Valia and Patrick Lemoine

Fifteen years after I composed this purely electronic work — the only one I ever produced — I exhume it, as a curiosity. Invited to compose a work by the Groupe de musique expérimentale de Bourges (GMEB), I decided that as a guiding principle I would limit myself to the use of material generated by oscillators and other modules of the high-quality analogue synthesizer from the Charybde studio and to very few processing. I then added a number of elements produced at the Groupe de musique expérimentale de Marseille (GMEM) with the first version of the Synclavier.

But a more poetic image was guiding me, that of the forest as a magical symbol of our unconscious. This was my first foray into the “deep forest” that I had already been thinking about; in it a few reminders of that first effort can still be found.

Here is what I felt about it: “Today [artists] reveal the relativity of visible things; they express their belief that the visible is only an isolated aspect in relation to the universe as a whole, and that other, invisible truths are the overriding factors.” — Paul Klee, Berlin, 1920

Here are traces of luxuriance and dream-like exoticism, a bestiary of the imagination that does not hide its kinship with François Bayle’s Trois rêves d’oiseau, Roger Cochini’s Lullaby, and Ivo Malec’s Bizarra. It is the fantasy-universe of the comic strip, or the fantastic one of fairy tales (in which no menace is excluded): the fantasmatic landscape of signs.

[English translation: Tom Carter]


Drôles d’oiseaux [Strange Birds] was realized in 1985-86 at the GMEB studios and at the composer’s studio and premiered on June 12, 1985 as part of Synthèse, the Festival international de musique électroacoustique de Bourges (France). It was commissioned by the French State (Music Office) and the Groupe de musique expérimentale de Bourges (GMEB). The version heard here was reworked and abridged at the composer’s studio in 2001.


Premiere

  • June 12, 1985, Synthèse 1985: Invention 4, Palais Jacques-Cœur, Bourges (Cher, France)

L’électro

Francis Dhomont

  • Year of composition: 1990
  • Duration: 1:06
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium

Stereo

ISRC CAD500316030

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits

This piece is a little vocal game, resolutely optimistic, about the ineffable beauty of electroacoustic music, that marvelous art that will surely make the next millennium the Brave New World that we have been waiting for. It is also a brief stylistic exercise that mixes fragments of ancient voices with the voice of Marie Pelletier in order to recapture the spirit of Puzzle, a two-minute and ten-second clip realized in 1975. Twenty-eight years ago — how time flies!

It is a game on the multiple manipulations and recitations of the word ‘electroacoustic,’ as well as on the exultant conclusion: “Electro, you’re the best.”

[English translation: Tom Carter]


L’électro [Electro] was realized in 1990 at the composer’s studio and premiered on 30 August 1995 as part of the Festival international d’art acousmatique Futura (Crest, France). L’électro was recorded on the 1995 disc DISContact! II (CEC 95CD).


Premiere

  • August 30, 1995, Futura 95: Acousma international 7, Chapelle des Cordeliers, Crest (Drôme, France)

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