Boomkat Product Review:
World premiere edition of Luc Ferrari’s incredible ‘Atelier de Libération de la Musique’ - a series of prescient, shockingly free-jazz styled improvisations recorded in February and March 1975 during rehearsals for the Concerts Électrovisuels at Pont F and Musée Galiera in Paris
Adding a whole new stripe of colour to everyone’s perception of music by Luc Ferrari - the fabled co-founder of the GRM, with Pierre Schaffer and François-Bernard Måche - Atelier de Libération de la Musique was, as printed on the LP sleeve, Ferrari’s self-stated attempt to “…free music from the constraints of style and aesthetics; to free the arts from the abstraction to train him for comprehensible actions; to be rather a craftsman of imagination.” And under these directives, Ferrari on electric organ, together with NWW-listed Martin Davorin Jagodic (electric piano) and Alain Petit (sax, flute, clarinet), plus Philippe Besombes (synth) realised this remarkable record which, somehow, until now, has remained unheard by the public.
Where we’re more used to hearing slow moving poetic tapestries or fleeting sceneries implying surrealistic scenarios from Ferrari, these recordings are more stripped down, verging on American minimalism, but too fractured to be called so. The A-side collects a number of succinct, enchantingly free and dynamic works ranging from windswept percussion and flute in the first, to passages of supremely playful, pastoral synth-jazz and elegiac melancholy, via a very Gallic passage of swaying, elliptical freeform jazz. On the other hand, the B-side’s parts are breezier, like someone opened a few windows in the room while Reich was developing his phasing minimalism, or as though Arthur Russell got lost in a trance while penning his Instrumentals, 1974.
For a Luc Ferrari record to surface like this is one thing, but for it to contain such gestures of beautiful genius, and so ahead of their time, like this record, is really quite special and unmissable.