Wednesday, 19 August 2020

Philippe Cohen Solal ‎– Paradis Artificiel(s) (2018)

Genre: Pop
Format: CD, Vinyl
Label: ¡Ya Basta!

01.   Le Club Des Hachichins
02.   Harmonie Du Soir
03.   Le Parfum
04.   Perfume Exotico
05.   Nimantran
06.   L'Invitation Au Voyage
07.   Shizuka
08.   Bon Voyage
09.   À Celle Qui Est Trop Gaie
10.   Rue Baudelaire

Sitar – Narendra Bataju
Bass – Marc Damblé
Accordion – Daniel Mille
Electric Guitar – Peter von Poehl, Philippe Cohen Solal
Composed By, Arranged By – Philippe Cohen Solal
Programmed By, Mixed By – Marc Damblé, Florent Cortesi
Backing Vocals – Yaité Ramos-Rodriguez
Vocals – Edie Blanchard, Philippe Cohen Solal, Yaité Ramos-Rodriguez, Samito, Alice Lewis, Marie Modiano

The first album of Philippe Cohen Solal since @gotan-project-official
“Once in the Middle East, there was a formidable sectarian order, led by a Sheikh who claimed the title of Old Man of the Mountain...” From the outset, the first words are in tune with an album on the edges of phantasmagorical ecstasy while the chorus is singing a hallucinatory rallying cry: “Hashish, hashish, hashish...” Philippe Cohen Solal, founder of the record label Ya Basta that in the early 1990s was at the forefront of electronic music, is at the helm and for the first time on the mic. He is known as an artist and producer in charge of many projects, including Gotan Project and The Moonshine Sessions. As master of ceremonies he presents never before experienced perfumes. The soundtrack of Le Club des Hashischins is a reference to a secret society initiated by Dr. Jacques-Joseph Moreau. From 1844 to 1849, the club brought together no less than Charles Baudelaire, Théophile Gautier, Honoré Daumier, Eugène Delacroix, Gustave Flaubert, Alexandre Dumas, Gérard de Nerval and Honoré de Balzac! They all frequented the Hôtel de Lauzun, a private mansion in the heart of Paris, where they met at hallucinatory parties to enjoy “dawamesk”, a hash jam served with Turkish coffee, and to experiment with artificial paradises. At 17 Quai d'Anjou, on the Île Saint-Louis, this place was just as famous for its smoke as it was for its music room. Here, everyone could lose themselves in sweet delusions, subtle delights... 
For posterity, Gautier wrote a novella entitled Le Club des Hashischins. The club itself, inaccessible since its closure, remained mythical for any intellectual. As luck would have it, Philippe Cohen Solal managed to get the key – as if in a dream – and to reopen the mansion in March 2017, during the Paris Music Festival. “At first, the idea was to present a creation directly inspired by the site, its history and the texts of Baudelaire and Gautier.” Solal would invite a host of personalities by the wainscoting and gilded decorations to accompany him into what he calls a “teenager’s fantasy”. Marie Modiano and Chassol, Maia Barouh and Olaf Hund, Elodie Bouchez and Patrick Bouchitey, the Argentinian plastic artist Tasisto and the writer Selim Nassib, and so on. The motto of this session and with broad scope: focus on experimentation. “A creative party, where music, literature and the psychotropic meets, just like in a dream!” It then became a reality, for four days, a milestone for those who had the opportunity and the joy to participate... 
The story could have ended there, but by then Philippe Cohen Solal wanted more. As soon as the doors of the Hôtel closed again, he began to extend the narrative with long studio nights partnering with Marc Damblé (aka Babylotion/La Dame Blanche) and Florent Cortesi (aka Lazy Flow) to weave a tapestry of soft waves on a silky canvas that pleasantly caresses the post-modernism of the 1990s. “I think I am a paradoxical nostalgic, for I am as drawn by the past as I am by the future, and this disc is quite simply an album of paradoxical nostalgia.” Composed somewhere between the shores of Zanzibar and the streets of Paris, this soundtrack is fully connected with a vision of the world in essence, both open and without any taboo in nature. At the same time abstract and melodic, organic and electronic, refined and raw, the music evokes / summons many styles, from shimmering music to reconfigured dub. Like a pop trip fostering sound reverie, it offers the space a healthy break in these hectic times. “I like the mix of genres and instruments, the collision of cultures and styles. In fact, I have no taboos nor boundaries. Music journeys are still the only time you don’t have to go through police checks and security gates.”