Review

Tom Sekowski, The WholeNote, no 11:5, 1 février 2006

empreintes DIGITALes here presents the DVD-Audio format debut of two Canadian composers whose electroacoustic works have won awards the world over. Always looking forward, their music is as challenging as it is rewarding.

Gilles Gobeil hits the mark with his Trilogie d’ondes. The trilogy is made up of three distinct works featuring the ondes Martenot, played by Suzanne Binet-Audet. Voix blanche [White voice] deals with an excruciating slow build-up to a crescendo that really never occurs. This is a piece where the ondes reigns supreme. Its rich timbral qualities, its unmistakable glitchy, percolating sound and its fantastic ability to blend in with the tape are riveting. With its unnerving climax that comes and goes over and over again, this is without a doubt the most unsettling piece in the trilogy. By the time we get to Là où vont les nuages… [Where the Clouds Go…] the mood that is fashioned leaves much guesswork at the forefront of the listener’s mind. Climaxes come in series of bursts and we are left wondering what will Gobeil do next? In the final movement, the longest piece in the trilogy, La perle et l’oubli [Pearl and Oblivion] the ondes is disguised as the soul in a journey on its way to incarnation and when the shimmering sampling of scream-like voices breaks through, you know the composer has hit a nerve. With perfect precision and undying sense of drama, Trilogie d’ondes is a major work in Gobeil’s catalogue of masterpieces.

With perfect precision and undying sense of drama, Trilogie d’ondes is a major work in Gobeil’s catalogue of masterpieces.

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