Samarkande | 4 Cadavres exquis

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Electronic: Ambient Electronic: Soundscapes Moods: Type: Experimental
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4 Cadavres exquis

by Samarkande

4 cadavres exquis started with two musicians, Eric Fillion and Sylvain Lamirande, and their idea to merge their musical divergences-progressive rock on one side and improvisation on the other to compose a musical dialog. Countless re-improvisations, colla
Genre: Electronic: Ambient
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Cadavre #2 (Samarkande)
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13:01 $2.49
2. Cadavre #3 (Koninkrijk der dode zielen)
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13:25 $2.49
3. Cadavre #5 (Surmenage et désordres mentaux)
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10:00 $2.49
4. Cadavre #4 (L'Avènement)
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15:23 $2.49
Available as MP3, MP3 320, and FLAC files.


Album Notes
Sylvain Lamirande did his college studies in classical saxophone and became a member of the C.E.M. (Musical Experimentation Center of Jonquiere). In Quebec City, he put together an electronic studio and participated in the COBRA Game Player, a project initiated and directed by John Zorn. Lamirande performed live many times with the Quatrax saxophone quartet (free improvisation). He left Quebec City for Montreal in 1989 to start his undergraduate studies in jazz saxophone and electro-acoustic music at Concordia University. In 1993, he founded a jazz-rock group, the Sylvain Lamirande Quartet.

Eric Fillion started studying classical piano and organ at age five for a ten-year period. At fifteen, he played synthesizers in alternative groups. Fillion was successively a member of many progressive rock groups, among which Societe d'images (winners of the Empire des futures stars contest at the beginning of the 1980s), Talisma, with whom he performed live, and Filber Basco, with whom he contributed to a progressive music compilation (Dans l'antre du dragon) for the Japanese market.


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Encyclopedia of Electronic Music

Samarkande (...) crafted a totally unique kind of music that I'd be hard pressed
Samarkande is the duo of Eric Fillion and Sylvain Lamirande from Montreal, Canada. On "4 Cadavres Exquis" they have crafted a totally unique kind of music that I'd be hard pressed to try to pin down. Sort of unusual Experimental EM, perhaps, with lots of mellotron and featuring a mix of traditional electronic prog (aka "EM") and some kind of academic electronics. All music is completely improvised. A couple of words about the feel of this record. Here we are confronted with a stark, dark and brooding type of synthesis that really sounds a bit like Klaus Schulze gone mad at places, and at other times it comes off as a demented prison cell or catacomb muzak. It's not all that surprising with a title like this, of course. All in all, there are four long tracks. The first one is called "Cadavre No. 2" (Cadavre No. 1 is not found on the album). Initially we get some effects and a strange rhythm that forms the basis of this track. An interesting start to this fairly unusual album. Low, growling synth melody gives it a really sinister feel. Mellotron strings are deployed to great effect. There are lots of experimental sounds to be heard. Some of them are rather distorted and harsh. At the same time the track is not aggressive as one could be led to believe. It's more sort of doomy, you know. Great mellotron choir at around the 5 minute mark. Also remarkable is the final part with some tasty distant solos. "Cadavre No. 3" has pretty abstract sounds at the beginning, with a very dark atmosphere. Great stuff indeed that should even be liked by fans of Dark Ambient. It's like being inside someone's nightmare. Don't play this to your kids. The track actually stays in rhythmless, abstract mould up until the end. Intriguing! The subtle recurring strings / pads that are used from around the 9 minute mark will give you the goosebumps! At the very end there is mellotron choir to be heard. The third track is called "Cadavre No. 5". Let's see what we have here. Ok, it's also pretty ambient. Ah, my favourite mellotron sound again: the choir! It's used to stunning effect, really giving you the creeps! Eric Fillion uses the real thing (a white model 400, if I'm not mistaken) and he knows how to do it. I must admit that this album is easily among those that feature the most effective mellotron use. Man, this track is simply soaked in tron, having both choirs, strings and some flute as well! It's a magnificent, sparsely populated sound space. On to the last track. It's called "Cadavre No. 4" and starts with the same (or similar) sounds that opened the first cut. Then we have a really strange sort of rhythm / sequence on top of which all other sounds and atmospheres build and interact. Another sequence is soon introduced as the track gains momentum and the sound becomes fatter. Of course, this is all still rather doomy and deep. There is great resonating bass melody at around the 9 minute mark and a recurring melodic line. Near the end some of the sounds break up and go weird and the finish is embellished by great tron flute sounds. Overall, in spite of this album's experimental nature, I found it very listenable and even accessible. I recommend it not only to those that love all things dark and challenging but also to general EM audience. Believe me, it's a great album that will grow on you. And of course it should be heard by all fans of the mighty mellotron!

Electroambient Space

It is brilliant and daring, though it will not be easy going for most. Not every
A restless bass line and oddly clicking percussion set the backdrop for the opening track of 4 Cadavres Exquis, “Sarmarkande.” My favorite instrument, the mellotron, makes a welcome appearance early, then comes and goes at will. Assorted sounds come and go, never forming a regular beat and certainly not a melody except for brief passages, usually in the background. The last couple of minutes include some nice soloing vaguely reminiscent of Berlin school. The equipment list would certainly make the average Tangerine Dream or Redshift fan drool, but for the most part this music treads a considerably different sonic terrain. If you love vintage sounds, check out “Surmenage et désordres mentaux,” with stunning mellotron strings and flutes. But watch out for suddenly slamming doors and other surprises. A spaceship seems to have landed at the beginning of “Koninkrijk der dode zielen,” and the music becomes truly alien. I think of when avid sci-fi fans tell me of “hard” science fiction, and how the public at large can’t handle it. That’s what 4 Cadavres Exquis is like. It’s the real deal. It is brilliant and daring, though it will not be easy going for most. Not everyday music, this is an intense listening experience that you have to be in the mood for, but when you are, watch out.

Ambient U.S

This is an intriguing and unique disc.(...)Recommended highly to lovers of darke
Samarkande is Sylvain Lamirande and Eric Fillion from Montreal. Sylvain comes from an extensive classical, jazz, and improv background. Eric began studying classical piano and organ from a very young age, later playing in several progressive rock groups. They write: "By arranging our compositions based on improvisation and spontaneity, we want to break the rigidity of both electro-acoustic and electronic music. We're always concerned not to sink in what's easy or commercial, we explore different musical genres by combining electronic technologies from the past and present." This is their debut from 2002.

Pulsing bass and mechanical percussion begin the first track, "Cadavre No.2", with swooping synths and orchestral string sounds. A powerful thirteen minute track, perhaps the opening theme to a futuristic science fiction adventure noir. Next is "Cadavre No.3", with a slow, suspenseful repeated single note motif with every sort of improvised sound fading in and out above it. Creepy and expansive, this piece enchants the listener for about thirteen and a half minutes. The third track, "Cadavre No.5" is a suspenseful drift through alien territory for ten minutes with many surprises and dynamics. "Cadavre No.4" is the last track, almost fifteen and a half minutes long, with a pulsing foundation, dark synth effects and flute-like solos.

This is an intriguing and unique disc. The fact that much of the sounds are improvised keeps the sounds lively and a certain spark going. Interesting textures abound and make this an exhilarating journey. Recommended highly to lovers of darker ambient music, especially if you are looking for something a bit different.