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29 November 2015

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29 November 2015
25 November 2015
By Vito Camarretta in Chain DLK (USA), November 25, 2015


“… L’appel, the acousmatic masterpiece that closes this collection.”

Georges Forget could be considered a proper poet of sound and field recordings as you can easily infer since Urban Adagio, the first long suite that opens this collection, where he inspires the poetic description of an urban environment and a city as a tired woman at the end of the day in opposition to the typical saying that some cities never sleep: “My own city is very tired when evening comes, weary of the uproar and hubbub. I can see her struggling to accompany citizens to their final occupations. Here she is, streets and boroughs blinking as she yawns and stretches out at the bottom of streets that are emptying slowly… my city falls asleep; she quitely lets erode away the forlorn destinies of the handful of souls still up to contemplate her, their shadows fading away under the pale light cast by the lampposts”, according Wahed Gotref’s introductory words. Premiered on April 23rd, 2010 as part of the concert Con sordino by Code d’acces, which commissioned it, at Relais Mont-Royal in Montreal, the suite renders such a portrait in a very astonishing and somehow cinematic way, but it’s only the first assay of the remarkable skills of representation, transfiguration and translations into sounds that got displayed on Le dernier present: the following suite Metal en bouche — awarded at the 25th Concorso internazionale di musica elettroacustica e rumore Luigi Russolo-Rossana Maggia at Annecy in France and at the 3rd Destellos Electroacoustic Composition Competition in Mar De Plata, Argentina — seems to render an attempt of asphyxiation of someone by means of faggots made by impressively resounding minced metallic objects; the noise of creaky boards, forestays and shroads could surmise the physiological outputs of a living entity on Une île, the suite that precedes the narrative one Orages d’acier, whose alternation of moments here violence becomes hallucinatory and suspended anxious moments of emptiness render the inspiration that Georges took from Ernst Junger’s novel Storm of Steel (published in French as “Orages d’acier”), where the author releates his combat experience in World War I, and the more recent motion picture The Thin Red Line by Terrence Malick. Forget quotes the translation by Jack Collings Squire of the first stanza of The Invitation to the Voyage from Baudelaire’s Fleurs Du Mal as framework of the more intimistic suite Seul et septembre (2008) and an extract from Melville’s Moby Dick — ’Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; and especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from eliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people’s hats off ’ then, I account it high time to get to sea as soon as I can. This is my substitute for pistol and ball. With a philosophical flourish Cato throws himself upon his sword; I quietly take to the ship. There is nothing surprising in this. If they but knew it, almost all men in their degree, some time or other, cherish very nearly the same feelings towards the ocean with me.’ — as a description of L’appel, the acousmatic masterpiece that closes this collection.

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19 November 2015

Today on electro:thèque, hear a full album stream of Le dernier présent by Georges Forget.