TRACK: Simon Provencher – ‘Choix multiples’: iterative experimenta for clarinet and guitar

Simon Provencher, photographed by Charlotte Savoie

KNOWN primarily for contributing a particularly jagged and jittery way with a riff to the work of Montréalais dance-punk outfit VICTIME, Simon Provencher is spreading his wings and revealing a more post-classical, intricate side to his musical aesthetic with a debut solo EP, Mesures, due out on Michel Records on March 26th; from which he’s releasing a first single, “Choix Multiples”, today – you can hear it below.

By turns ambient, dissonant, closely woven, it’s an exploration of what can happen when you venture into composing for guitar, clarinet and percussion, and be fully open to the happy accident.

The title’s a direct reference to the four clarinet parts that share the melody in the song, which knot and bind ever more tightly; as well as a reference to the endlessly iterative choices presented at every turn in creating in any artistic form.

“Instrumentation, chords, melodies, coexist, much like quantum phenomena, until the moment where the fingers lay on the instrument, the analogue-to-digital converter fires up and the infinite possibilities crystallize in one unique, permanent recording,” explains Simon.

It’s a triptych of a song, with three distinct phases: it bounds joyfully and precociously into life, all energy and tautly wound, clarinetist Oliver Fairfield at the vanguard of the free exploration; but as with the tortoise and the hare, prepared guitars begin to wriggle wirily through, subtle discordancy, and the drumming wearies, contenting itself with the susurration of cymbal play.

“I like to say that some music is discovered more than it is written, and it especially rings true with this release,” Simon concludes.

Simon Provencher’s Mesures is available for pre-order now over at Bandcamp.

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