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Charles-Eric Charrier Website | Press Pack | Cover | Press Book

"Superbe!"
Vibrations

"Un véritable objet d'art"
Magic

"This album is going to be a fixture on many year-end best-of lists"
Alex Gibon - Fluid-Radio -

"Ce disque marque une étape dans la carrière d’un musicien précieux"
Benoit Richard - Hop Blog -


About "Oldman"

« Oldman » is a work by Charles-Eric Charrier commissioned by the label Joint Venture Records – a commission made for our own pleasure, motivated by a deep desire to listen to Charles-Eric’s music presented in the most simple, and most profound manner. The idea took shape after having worked on different projects together: the CD “Gold & Wax” by Lokka which he produced, “Stay Gold” and “Two Head Bis Bis” in which some of us participated, and “Koïma” by Sidi Touré, where Charles-Eric accompanies the guitarist from Mali on the bass. The principle: to record an acoustic album with his favorite instrument, the bass, in basic conditions: a chair in the middle of a room, some mikes and one single day of recording; all this to aim at the purest sound, explaining as little as possible while plunging into one’s deepest self.

From this recording session evolved an album that is simple, intimate and sober, with Charles-Eric’s grating voice in evidence, somewhere between instrumental folk and popular tale, African blues and haïku, “chanson française” and contemporary music.
It does not matter what style, what label might be applied to define the music: Charles-Eric Charrier goes beyond the genres, does not recognize boundaries, mixes the metaphors and this time around, more than usual, brings his melodies to the fore. That’s also the comment of Covalesky, who produced the recording: “It was a pleasure to work on this melodic side which he rarely exposes – to aim for the essential, for the heart of his music, and to expose his talent as a composer, a songwriter".

The more so since the music, the words, sometimes spoken, sometimes murmured, follow this uncluttered path. No psychological introspection or holiday shots; Charles-Eric Charrier has looked back on his past and has assembled memories and sensations, those that have stayed inside through their intensity and their perfect state. Just perceptions, no intellect, just the present instant, without explanation, a voyage of the senses to his home town, Les Sables d’Olonnes, a fishing port in the Vendée region of France which has become a holiday resort. In the music as in the words you can hear the sea, the life at the port, the ocean winds, the boats that sway on the water, the wood cracking; you see the sun, the hot sand, the forms of a woman, you smell the freshly cut grass, the sea before the storm. Everything is in suspense.

While he composed and recorded the tracks, Charles-Eric has created drawings, some of which have been coloured by his wife, Béatrice Templé. Rather than being an illustration of the music, this is a second path, complementary to the album, another possibility, a digression, all in roundness, in curves, in simple lines.

The album is on release including a booklet of 24 pages with drawings and the lyrics of Charles-Eric, printed by the Dutch company Extrapool on an a stencil machine. It also exists in a "low cost" version (CD and cover, without booklet) for those that need to pay attention to their expenditure. The release will coincide with a concert on April 22 at the Pannonica in Nantes,  where Charles-Eric will be joined by Cyril Secq on guitar and Covalesky on percussion.


"Oldman" Book   "Oldman" Book   "Oldman" Book   "Oldman" Cd    "Oldman" Book + Cd



Biography

Charles-Eric Charrier is one of those musicians for whom it is difficult to sum up the career process with just a few lines; there are curves, digressions, great jumps,doubts, daring… Since his beginnings with Dreta Lorelie, he has never ceased to explore new horizons, to open up to the world, to look behind the scenes, to question his music, and music in general -  and thanks to all this, he has drawn the map of his inner world. We will avoid talking about rock, jazz, ambient, contemporary music, post this and that, we would be worried to lack certain labels… ! Charles-Eric is not an instrumentalist in the strict sense of the term. Obviously, the bass is central in his music, but neither in terms of a display of technical skills, nor in terms of musical theory, or through notes in excessive quantities; he rather searches for the perfect line between improvisation and composed music; depending on the context.

« I am trying to be simple, but not simplistic ». That bass is at the service of a musical creation, of a certain sound, of a whole, but it is, above all, the means to put forward music in which the musician is not on the forefront, like these Songhaï dancers of Holley who, once they have reached the state of trance, will become the “horses of the genies”, through them, despite of them, something bigger expresses itself over which they have no control. “Before, I made “intellectual music” -  I twisted and bent it to express something psychological, emotional. Since “Two Heads Bis Bis”, I am at the service of something that surpasses me (…). The challenge is to open oneself and to let the music come out.”

MAN, Charles C. Oldman, Oldman are the leftovers from the past, successive stages of metamorphosis, of change. Today, he signs his recordings in his own name, a sign that a new threshhold has been crossed. Is the story closed? No, the journey does not appear to have come to an end...


Collaborations

Sidi Touré "Koïma" (Thrill Jockey, soon), Lena & The Floating Root Orchestra (Plush, 2008), Rob Mazurek, The Clogs, Rhys Chatham, Jérôme Paressant "Under the House" (Oceanik Creations, 2009),...


Selective discography   

Charles-Eric Charrier "Silver" (Experimedia, 2011)
Oldman "Two Head Bis Bis" (Low Impedance, 2008)
Oldman "Son, father and son" (Arbouse Recording, 2008)
M.A.N. "Helping Hand" (Sub Rosa, 2009)


Playlist

1 Rudy
2 Riz
3 Mounice & Papoince
4 Abdelatif Charrier
5 Rumi des sables
6 Spider
7 D’où vient le vent ?
8 Daye d’été
9 respirer
10 la drague, le ché 

 

Charles-Eric "Oldman" Charrier : vocals, bass
All songs written and composed by Charles-Eric Charrier
All drawings by Charles-Eric Charrier, Colors by Beatrice Templé
Art cover by Den
Recorded by Covalesky in Nantes, France, in December 2009
Mixed and mastered by Askwell
Record producer : Covalesky
Produced by Joint-Venture Records
Publisher: Métisse Music, France



Text

En toutes saisons                             
Le cœur soulevé
Dans l’infime

Un grain de riz 
Terrasse l’idée
L’Océan bouge sans se fatiguer

En juin                                                  
Le ciel de Californie                              
Remplit la plage                                       

Calme plat
L’odeur des moteurs

Regarder la lune du pont,       
Et de son cercle                                     
En lire le temps de demain                

Les mains dans la drague                  
Le soleil sur la nuque                        
Douce fin d’été                                 

La lune chaude                                       
Les funes                                                
Battent les rythmes                                

Daye d’été                                           
Herbes coupées                                   
Elle est contente                                 

Mi-septembre                                        
L’Océan                                              
Jusqu’au hanches                            

L’époque des raisins                         
Courir sur la plage                             

Regarde, quand le soleil se lève      
Ton grand-père goutter  la terre         
Au milieu de la vigne                   
Son vin, il le partagera                        
Et la cave resplendira                        

Au fond de l’hiver                              
Bruits métalliques                               
Au loin présent

In all seasons 
The heart lifted 
Into the infinitesimal      

A grain of rice 
Flattens the idea 
The ocean moves, effortlessly      
 
In June
The California sky 
Fills the beach     

Complete calm 
The smell of motors
    
Looking at the moon from the bridge
And from its round
Reading tomorrow's weather

Hands  on  the  dredge  
Sun on the neck 
Gentle end of summer   

The warm moon 
The strings of the fishing nets
Beat the rhythm    

Summer scythe 
Cut grass 
She  is happy     

Mid September
The ocean
Up to the hips

The season of grapes 
To run on the beach     

Look, at sunrise
Your grandfather tasting  the earth
Amongst the vines 
His wine, he will share it 
And the cellar will glow.

In the depth of winter 
Metallic noises 
Are present from afar

Press

Fluid - Radio :

Oldman” by Charles-Eric Charrier is certainly something of a departure from the previous album released on Experimedia, “Silver”…

Whilst “Silver” was cerebral post-rock, the new approach sees the artist, seated with a bass, in the middle of a room surrounded by mikes, sans any accompaniment save some sparse bass overdubs, and what seems like some occasional strings or “colour” by partner Beatrice Templé. The approach is brutally honest – a strong characteristic of the record is the sound of the artist breathing in and out, and the sound of hands swiping across the strings, the chair creaking and seemingly the sound of the air moving around the room.

I’m a deep lover of solo bass as an instrument, and once I was past the seeming 180-degree turnaround in musical style I was completely sold on the absolute sincerity in sound. Absolutely no hiding anything with this approach, you’re actually in the room with the artist.

As nothing is hidden, when multiple tracks are being used there are overlapping room sounds – the aforementioned breathing and creaking multilayered over each other is almost like mixed texture/field recording, it’s that tactile. The mikes are hot, white hot, and they pick up every movement and sound Charrier makes. You can hear him whispering to himself.

Musically, the vibe is one of jazz, but as with “Silver” the punk aesthetic fairly seeps out of every pore. The multilayered bass meandering is articulate, emotive and daring, going everywhere and nowhere at once; Charrier displays an amazing ability to stay within melody without overtly demonstrating one. Joint Venture, who are releasing the album, describe the music as “somewhere between instrumental folk and popular tale, African blues and haïku, “chanson française” and contemporary music.” All of which does it justice, but it still fails to convey the singular sound and attitude of it all.

All tracks are presented with sparse vocal stanzas, a vocal hook to hold onto amongst the chaos of the music. The phraseology is haiku-esque, simple but evocative – for example –

“Mid September
The ocean
Up to the hips”

All of which are delivered in a one-take gravelly baritone. In French.

Very, very smooth.

There are two forms planned for the release, “i
ncluding a booklet of 24 pages with drawings and the lyrics of Charles-Eric, printed by the Dutch company Extrapool on an a stencil machine. It also exists in a “low cost” version (CD and cover, without booklet) for those that need to pay attention to their expenditure. The release will coincide with a concert on April 22 at the Pannonica in Nantes, where Charles-Eric will be joined by Cyril Secq on guitar and Covalesky on percussion.

Those impressed with the raw attitude of “Silver” will certainly be knocked out by the brash and grimy class of “Oldman”. I’m going out on a bit of a limb here, but I’m pretty certain this album is going to be a fixture on many year-end best-of lists. My understanding is that this is a very limited edition, and I would strongly suggest getting in VERY QUICKLY when it is released 22nd April. If you have time, the Joint Venture site has also made me an instant fan of the label. I’m slowly working my way through their catalogue as I write this.

 “
I am trying to be simple, but not simplistic. That bass is at the service of a musical creation, of a certain sound, of a whole, but it is, above all, the means to put forward music in which the musician is not on the forefront, like these Songhaï dancers of Holley who, once they have reached the state of trance, will become the “horses of the genies”, through them, despite of them, something bigger expresses itself over which they have no control. “Before, I made “intellectual music” - I twisted and bent it to express something psychological, emotional. Since “Two Heads Bis Bis”, I am at the service of something that surpasses me.

The challenge is to open oneself and to let the music come out.” – Charles Eric-Charrier.

Mission accomplished, sir.

Review by Alex Gibson for Fluid Radio

Links

myspace Charles-Eric Charrier

Band camp Joint Venture Records

Joint Venture Records website
Joint Venture Records Facebook

Métisse Music website



Joint Venture Records Métisse Music