29/05/12 - PHASE 5: NEW FOUND LAND
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PHASE 5! The great thing about PHASES is that it's the kind of project that lives in its own in a way... like some kind of plant that grows every month but in an unpredictable way. Releasing a single a month requires to let go of all the control you usual get over the making of an album. And things did go unexpectedly with PHASE 5, as it was supposed to be a collaboration with Anthony Gonzales of M83 but it didn't happen. You can listen to the audio-documentary to find out how Anthony and I met... Anthony only had a few days off in April and he was interested in working with me on a song. Unfortunately, you can't order inspiration online, neither can you make sure to write the best song for an admired collaborator whenever you want to... So unfortunately, Anthony wasn't able to contribute to "NEW FOUND LAND". But we are planning to work together an upcoming Phases single... fingers crossed. Anthony and I really like each other, we've collaborated together before (he sang and played keys on "I Have Sound" - on Going Places, Carpark2 007... I remixed two of his tracks, "Teen Angst" and "Kim and Jessie"... and wrote some string arrangements for a few M83 tracks as well)... so I'm confident there'll be other collaborations in the future.
Watch the video by Scott Foley
As you can imagine, not having Anthony on board was a huge bummer and I found it difficult to finish the track on my own. Thankfully, I succeeded, with the help of Dominic Vanchesteing, a close collaborator and friend (he also helped me out with New Design (Phase 1) and P.I.E.C.E.S. (Phase 3)). I had no choice anyway, M83 collaboration or not, I had to deliver a single in time. Also, at the very last minute, I also asked Emmnuelle Bourassa Beaudoin, who danced in the New Design video, to sing backup vocals... I had heard her sing during rehearsals of a dance show that she choregraphed (I was working on the music for her show) and thought her voice was really beautiful. She accepted the offer so here we are, singing together on NEW FOUND LAND.
The style assignment for this single was "ambient, uplifting, open, vocal hamornies". I leave it up to you to decide wether I reached my goals or not...
This is a still frame taken from the video for New Design (directed by Jérémie Battaglia). I know I look like Big Brother on that picture, but I just wanted to show you Emmanuelle, amazing dancer, choreographer... and singer.
A few words about the lyrics, just to avoid any confusion... the song is not a Canadian anthem: NEW FOUND LAND is not in reference to the Canadian province called Newfoundland, at least not directly. I just liked the expression and it was a to illustrate the idea of discovering a land that was never seen before. I traveled for Australia in early March this year and it really stroke me as a wild continent. I imagined how it was like to discover such a unique land, centuries ago. Of course, it was occupied by First Nations, but what if we could still discover a piece of land that was never touched by human beings... Just a crazy thought. Maybe it's a natural instinct for a human to want to conquer, to invade, to make the land his own... And maybe it's also in human nature's to imagine a world that is better then our own. I think that's what I wanted to express in this song. And maybe it's also about Canada in the end, because I feel like politics are taking a wrong and dangerous turn here and sometimes I wish I could just escape we my own so we could start over again. NEW FOUND LAND is about finding a place where anything is possible I guess.
HARMONIE 2 (DEMO)
Throughout April, I worked as a sound designer with a performing arts collective called Système Kangourou. It was a wonderful work experience and my role was to create a hypnotic and ambient soundscape to accompany a performance done in the hall of Place des arts, Montreal's biggest art complex. The drone I did was realy soothing and I though it could very well be turned into a Montag track, which it did! "Harmonie 2" was the work title for the drone. I added some samples to it, as well as a rythm and that was it. Because it was so quickly done, I realized it was probably better to add the word "demo" after the title.