Nicolas Bernier
LP/CD hr7963, 2011

usure.paysage combines the strongest particles of Bernier's kaleidoscopic oeuvre: an expressive mix of lively field recordings, tiny and massive electronics and sparkling relocations. The docker barks out aloud, the little insect crawls through the 19th century woodworker's atelier, forgotten voices vanish and the rest is no silence. This is truly some of the finest musique concrète ever to be released on vinyl - very charming.

Nicolas Bernier: electroacoustic artist, surround sound composer, occasional curator, old typewriter aficionado and sandcastle manufacturer. Careless about aesthetic tags, Bernier navigates through live electronics, installations, musique concrète, art video, performance, music for dance, theatre and cinema. In the midst of this eclecticism, his artistic concerns remain constant: the balance between the cerebral and the sensual, and between organic sound sources and digital processing. He is the founder of the sound art microorganism Ekumen, member of the media art organization Perte de Signal and the art director of Réseaux, a major Canadian electroacoustic concert producer. His works have been awarded or broadcast in festivals around the world including ZKM, Transmediale, Prix Ars Electronica, Akousma, Mutek and DotMov.

Artwork by urban9
Mastered & cut at D+M Berlin
Vinyl edition: 300 copies
CD edition: 150 copies

The CD is presented in the original 12" vinyl cover. It is a one-time pressing of 150 copies and contains the unreleased bonus "k.krrkphsssPOW paysage", a 9-minute composition produced for the "trans_canada" Festival at ZKM Karlsruhe in 2005.

The antiquarian aesthetic of a fastidious watchmaker mingles with that of modern-day cinematic sound designer on this utterly compelling musique concrète album. The numerous detours, razor cuts, slamming doors, wooden squeaks and articulated arrangement of sonic debris are on display with considerable panache, recalling concrète compositions dating back to the late 1950s and early 60s.
The Wire

Excellente plongée dans une composition de musique concrète faisant le lien entre une esthétique des années 50 et l'étude paysagère plus actuelle. Collections de sons environnementaux et d'autres sources acoustiques organisées et montées dans une dynamique cinétique au service d'un kaléïdoscope sonore aux multiples facettes. Excellent !

Within the avant-garde pantheon, Bernier's work follows that of Michel Chion and Luc Ferrari doing their finest work, through dynamic juxtapositions blurting concrete sounds (bellowing car horns, steam engine growls, leaden explosions, etc) against unsettled atmospheres and spackled dronings that start and stop with a series of repeating punctuations not unlike the strategy that Nurse With Wound mastered on Homotopy To Marie. He's aware of the cinematic urge for acousmatic works, and pushes "Les chambres de l'atelier" towards a Lynchian noir with a soft-focus melody warbling in the background to a series of crunched abrasions and eerie footsteps, ruptured by ghostly noises. Excellent, through and through!