ORDER | 12"Vinyl + limited edition handmade silkscreen print
FRÉDÉRIC D. OBERLAND
Multi-instrumentalist, musician, photographer and co-founder of groups such as Oiseaux-Tempête, Le Réveil des Tropiques, FOUDRE!, The Rustle Of The Stars and FareWell Poetry, Frédéric D. Oberland takes, as the starting point for his sophomore solo album, a vertiginous dive into George Bataille's 'Inner Experience' and the cave of Dante's 'Inferno'.
A condensed version of a sound and visual installation created in the basement of the contemporary art space Labanque in Béthune, 'Labyrinth' invites us to bare witness to the loss of landmarks and to feel then immersive sense of trance. The point of departure, the opening note, is the A, the lowest of the piano, from which we slide, almost imperceptibly, snapped up by a wave of sounds, rich in their instrumentation, sometimes rough (electric guitars, console feedbacks, bursts of transformed drums and saxophone screams crackling in their dissonance ) and at other moments delicate (hushed and scattered chords of piano, mellotron and distant synths in whispering voices). Accompanied by the drumming and spatial mixing by Jules Wysocki, the six connected stages/chapters of this immersive journey embrace expanse. In a continuous game of call and response between the intimate and the vast, 'Labyrinth' plays with the dynamics, the silence and the musical genres (ambient, free-jazz, electronics, acousmatic), kneading and pulling the form and structure of the tracks in ever changing attempts towards transfiguring the chaos.
More radical in continuity and more outlandish than his first album 'Peregrinus Ubique' - 'stranger / traveller everywhere' - (VoxxoV, 2015), the 'Labyrinth' of Frederic D. Oberland recalls in these almost orgiastic collages, the work of "editing" provided for his nomadic Oiseaux-Tempête albums (Sub Rosa, 2012-2017), yet here in a more introverted territory, weaving a cocoon whose ascending and cyclical pulsations intoxicate us, as if under hypnosis.
℗ & © Nahal Recordings
Cat.no.NAHAL003 - all rights reserved
Release Date: October 26th 2018
Format: LP Vinyl / Digital
Worldwide Distribution: JAPAN BLUES
France Distribution: BIGWAX
released October 26, 2018
Composed & edited by Frédéric D. Oberland
Performed, recorded & mixed with Jules Wysocki at Magnum Diva, le loft d'Aubervilliers & Labanque - Béthune between Winter & Summer 2017 // Frédéric D. Oberland: electric guitar, mellotron, dark energy doepfer, harmonic pipe, critter & guitari organelle and pocket piano, microkorg, hurdy-gurdy BAB V, koma field kit, pantophone, percussion, piano, alto saxophone, duduk, flute, field recordings // Jules Wysocki: augmented drums, feedbacks, percussion, field recordings // Featuring Inferno's Canto XXXIV from 'La Divina Commedia' by Dante Aliegheri narrated by Pamela Maddaleno and recorded by Romain Poirier & Jean-Charles Bastion at Mer Noir // Mastered by James Plotkin
Photographs by Frédéric D. Oberland // Graphic design by Thibault Proux
Freely inspired by Georges B., Dante A., Friedrich N., the Minotaur & an A obstinate, this piece was originally created as a 90min loop installation for 8 speakers channels, 2 stroboscopic lights, 1 photographic lightbox and a few seats in the basement of Labanque art center in Béthune, France, during the exhibition "Intériorités" - second part of the trilogy "La Traversée des Inquiétudes" curated by Léa Bismuth.
A CLOSER LISTEN (USA) - 'Where is the true terror found, within or without? Oberland leaves the question hanging, but we know the answer. We are all minotaurs, clutching our severed strings.'
STRAY LANDINGS (UK) - '...warbling resonances, haunting dulcet tones and fireside crackles...'
METAL MAGAZINE (SP) - 'for those who appreciate the subtleties of sound, the literary (and age-old) references, and a beautiful vinyl in their hands, this album couldn’t be better.'
BAD TO THE BONE MAGAZINE (FR) : "L’album est une oeuvre spatiale, totale, d’une maitrise parfaite."
HEARFEEL (UK): 'Guitars thrum and pitch, synths weave and twinkle as though straining the fabric of reality, pushing out and stretching and tearing. Nature does what it can to resist and rebuff our efforts: a harsh drone wind blows, and as we push harder and faster towards deliverance it feels like the world itself is crumbling. Noise grinds and grates with such heady power, narrowly missed boulders evaded as the walls tumble down, a churning rockslide threatening at any instant to crash into us and send us pinwheeling back into nothing.'
NEW NOISE MAGAZINE (FR): "B.O infernale. Un ressac perpétuel de nappes sonores, parfois agressives, parfois caressantes, Labyrinth trimballe son auditoire de vague en vague, jouant sur les dynamiques, les grain, le silence."
ART PRESS 2 (FR) - 'Nous y sommes : au coeur du voyage, contraints à la perte de repères, sur le fleuve menant du connu à l’inconnu.'
HEADPHONE COMMUTE (UK) - 'if you’re already a fan of Oberland and his past works as Oiseaux-Tempête, then you’re in for a treat…'
L'OMBRE SUR LA MESURE (FR) - 'D’une rare intensité, Labyrinth est un album qui m’évoque le cinéma opaque de Sharunas Bartas, et les films muets de Dreyer. Un peu comme regarder à travers un judas l’intimité d’une chimère. Le musicien se révèle en artificier de la lumière.'
FLUID RADIO (UK) - 'The mind moves in a strange world where anguish and ecstasy coexist…'
LES INROCKUPTIBLES (FR) - 'Une expérience sensorielle labyrinthique.'
THE ATTIC (RO) - 'Highlight!'
JAZZ AROUND (BE) - 'Un peu à la manière d’un David Sylvian dont on se souvient d’un « Ember Glance » tout aussi introspectif, le multi-instrumentiste parisien nous emmène sur des chemins rêches et riches qui déclinent des paysages aux contours passionnants.'