Christophe Bailleau: Air Resort

Following upon 2008's On Soft Mountains We Work Magic, a collaboration with Neal Williams issued on Fenêtre Records, Christophe Bailleau inaugurates the Soundscaping Records label in fine style with his solo effort Air Resort. The release is comprised of fifty-three minutes of shimmering tapestries and dreamlike soundscapes that overflow with kaleidoscopic detail generated by Bailleau using laptop, guitar, and field recordings. It's not an entirely solo undertaking, however, as Sebastién Roux is welcomed aboard for “Je Te Laisse Des Messages Sur Ton Décodeur” where the two weave a multitude of colourful textures into a churning mass. Mark Templeton also makes an appearance, with his delicate guitar playing lending calm to the sweeping and turbulent electronic streams of “ Small Village on the Hill.”

Each piece is a self-contained marvel of individuating character. “Yoshi's Island ,” for example, teems with Glass-like organ patterns, music box filigrees, and field recording exotica that make you feel as if you're hovering over the island, yet still close enough to witness the brilliant colour of the landscape and the bustle of human activity below. “Meli-melo” is rather combustible by comparison, as Bailleau merges humming tones, snare spatters, and billowing synth vapours with sparkling guitar strums that, halfway through, help naturalize the piece. Organ tones shudder and shimmer in a secret pond during the peaceful “Silence Cadeau” while “Coloriiage” resonates with waves of shimmer. The excellence of Bailleau's recording is matched by its presentation, with Air Resort packaged in a distinctively-designed, large-format case that displays a striking, wrap-around photograph of snow-covered mountains taken by Trym Asserson.

March 2009