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We’re pleased to announce that Eric Chenaux’s full Constellation discography is now available on Bandcamp.
 
For listeners new to Chenaux’s music, who may have found themselves beguiled by his most recent and acclaimed album Slowly Paradise, this is a great way to discover the range of experimental folk, post-jazz, avant-garde balladry and fried guitar improv that has cemented Eric’s reputation as one of the most distinctive, playful and iconoclastic disruptors of the singer-songwriter tradition
 
Spanning six full-length albums of inscrutable exploratory depth and strange hybrid beauty on Constellation over the past twelve years, Eric’s work covers a range of styles but is unified by his dulcet voice and his utterly unique, virtuosic guitar technique. This is music that will reward open ears, and we encourage you to dive into the diverse catalog of this sweet and exceptional songwriter.
 
Bandcamp is far and away the most artist-friendly platform among an otherwise deeply demoralising landscape of major online music services. By supporting Constellation and its artists on Bandcamp, you are ensuring that most of your money makes its way back to these artists – and are helping to sustain an essential alternative online music distribution platform whose business ethics and economics truly value small/independent artists and labels.
 
Eric Chenaux’s discography on Bandcamp is also specially priced as a bundle – buy all six albums in the digital download format of your choice (including uncompressed 16-bit .wav files, which are not available in Constellation’s own webshop) and benefit from a bulk discount.


NOW UNTIL 30 JUNE 2018
ERIC CHENAUX DIGITAL BUNDLE AT 50% OFF
SIX ALBUMS FOR $27.00 (USD)
ericchenaux.bandcamp.com

 


 
Slowly Paradise


Drawing from Eric Chenaux’s rich history in avant-folk, post-jazz, improvisation and balladry, Slowly Paradise is a lovely collection of mostly long songs guided by soothing, buttery singing and bent, fried fretwork. Chenaux grapples with the relationship between improvisation and structure in unique, idiosyncratic ways, and the resulting juxtaposition of his mellow, dexterous crooning and his highly experimental (and equally dexterous) guitar explorations, explodes even unconventional notions of singing and accompaniment, of tonal and timbral interplay between guitar and voice. This stunning new record, showcasing Chenaux’s singular voice and guitar stylings, is being celebrated as the most assured and essential solo work from this inimitable, consummate songwriter.

 


 
Skullsplitter


Skullsplitter is the impressive album that confirms Chenaux’s singular aesthetic: genuine, natural, unaffected vocals gliding through slow, smoky melodies while electric and nylon-string guitars are deployed with adventurously experimental, dextrous, semi-improvisational technique and texture. It also builds on Chenaux’s long history of sonic experimentation with analog signal capture through natural oscillation and wave distortion, site-specificity and environmental sound. Working closely with his longtime recording engineer Radwan Ghazi Moumneh, Chenaux brings this experience to bear on the production side of Skullsplitter as well, with the use of physically swinging speakers and radical gating and panning to tease out further fluctuations in the barometer of the guitar sound. The result is a gem of an album in Chenaux’s increasingly luminous discography.

 


 
Guitar & Voice


With this fourth album for the label, simply and aptly titled Guitar & Voice, Chenaux has made what in a literal sense can be called his first solo album, in that the recording features only his playing and singing; no guest or supporting musicians, minimal overdubs, and a rigorous structure that alternates back and forth between longform lyrical vocal-based songs and shorter, cacophonously harmonious bowed-guitar instrumentals. Chenaux sees the entirety of Guitar & Voice as balladry. Heartbreaking lyrics delivered in his strong but gentle lilt are set against an ever-shifting array of sounds and strategies elicited from acoustic nylon-string guitar (with the help of a small but expertly-deployed chain of wah-, freeze- and fuzz-pedals). Traditional song structure and lyrical arcs manage somehow to anchor themselves to constantly surprising, unpredictable and virtuosic contrapuntal guitar work, always playing at/with the threshold of sonic experimentation and improvisation. Chenaux’s ballads sound like no other.

 


 
Warm Weather With Ryan Driver


Warm Weather With Ryan Driver blends Eric Chenaux’s ornate experimentation with extended melodic structures and cradling lullabye/love song ambience in a newfound coherence and temperance. Chenaux’s use of nylon string guitar as the spine for almost every track is the most notable shift in instrumentation from its predecessor. The instrument establishes a slightly different but timbrally profound anchor for the new tunes. As the album title suggests, the record is unified by a kind of humid, languorous glue – the sort of atmosphere that Chenaux compares to “that weather where the skin and air see no difference in each other.” This sort of climatic metaphor was a touchstone for Chenaux’s approach to the arranging and recording, ably supported by Driver’s use of droning organs and synths and his delicately paced, gently jazz-inflected piano. The overall effect is often akin to an interstice of Talk Talk, John Martyn and Robert Wyatt. Chenaux produces some of the most mature, subtly sophisticated and satisfying avant-folk music we know.

 


 
Sloppy Ground


Sloppy Ground is a collection of beautifully fried love songs, highly original in compositional approach and instrumental texture, and utterly compelling in lyrical content and delivery. Chenaux has rallied some of Toronto’s finest ‘out’ players for this fine album, including Nick Fraser on drums, Ryan Driver on amplified melodica and synths, David Prentice on violin, Doug Tielli on 5-string banjo, Martin Arnold on electric tenor banjo, and Aimee Dawn Robinson on electric echo harp. Chenaux’s own guitar work has never been more thrillingly deployed in the context of (relatively) conventional songcraft.

 


 
Dull Lights


Dull Lights is an album of long winding melodies and subtle shifts and turns. It is also an album of love songs. Supported by longtime collaborators Martin Arnold and Nick Fraser, Chenaux has forged a sublime 9-song album that folded his devotion to Scottish folk and pop balladry, his mastery of ‘damaged’ guitar dynamics, and his wistful, thoughtful voice into wonderfully fluid structures shaped by a trio of seasoned improvisers. Fraser’s drums play around the beat, or paint beneath it, while Arnold and Chenaux pluck buzzing lines from guitars and banjos. From the warped guitar laden drag-waltz of “Ronnie Mary,” to the processional monophony of “White Dwarf, White Sea,” to the distorted bagpipe swath of “Worm and Gear”, to the white noise crooning of the title track – Eric Chenaux composed a delicate, intricate, inspired cycle of pared-down tunes using a highly original palette of guitar-based sounds and strategies.

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