If punk and techno have one thing in common, it is to have proved in a few founding acts that sound and aesthetic revolutions are also embodied in basements, cellars, tiny rooms and studios filled to the brim with instruments and deconstruction desires. Along the way, a funny thing happened: excitement and creative madness gave way to dogmatism on the one hand, to clientelism on the other, and we ended up with concert venues that looked like open-air supermarkets, while records were often reduced to mere sound business cards.
Beside the industrial gesticulations and strategies, some artists have taken the 21st century and its mutations in their stride, recreating in their own way spaces of creations and expression that are totally vital. This is the case of the French producer and composer Chloé Thévenin with her label Lumière Noire. With an impeccable career nourished by various aesthetics and experiences, she has often shown the way to those who wish to escape the distressing formatting that affects the Art of our time. Her label has become a refuge as much as an open door to a cosmos of freedom, a free and rebellious vehicle driven by a saving Do It Yourself ethic and an unquenchable thirst for discovery.
From Above Vol. 3, fortieth reference (already!) of Lumière Noire and third compilation of the label is a record in its own right. Let’s say that it would be a pity to classify it in the «commercial sampler» category or to reduce it to a «random» playlist. This collection of unreleased tracks functions as a journey, a celebration of a community spirit as much as of the ethics defended by Chloe’s label. Opened by the aptly named Higher by Danse Alice, From Above Vol. 3 is a long, mutating climb towards a form of apotheosis. One crosses there cinematographic and növö vibrations (Viral of Justine Forever), minimalist and kraut (Mondi Lontanissimi of Rodion), a certain post-punk morgue (Silk Pistol by C.A.R.), an oblique dance-music (Star Glide by Damien Vandesande, member of dOP), a luminous City Pop reminiscence (Gradus Ad Parnassum by Vega Voga, new project of Narumi Herisson – Tristesse Contemporaine) which contrasts with a worried synthetic dystopia (Lost Boys by Ian Tocor & Joseph Schiano di Lombo).
We find the founder of the label in the new and terribly exciting project High Season. Founded in the company of Ben Shemie, musician at the edge of rock and electronic music, singer of the indispensable Suuns, the duo tackles an Everest on which many musicians have left their skin before them. Hybrid punk, ambient and minimal techno, this Pavilion 606 is the ideal representative of the music according to Lumière Noire, a labyrinth of sounds and moods, ideas and contrasts, in which one never gets lost. Music of experience more than experimentation, this track, distantly guided by ethereal vocals (as if Liz Frazer was greeting François Hardy in the mist), leaves us filled with elsewhere.
Another single sent as a scout, Correct Settings by the Brazilian musician and producer Frontinn, succeeds in bringing back into modernity the cold wave and proto-indus heritage without the often harassing revival tics of some current projects. It is a fight between space and time that is played on this evolving piece that we could wonderfully see illustrating a John Carpenter or Nicolas Winding Refn movie.
Defined by his boss as an «art of side-stepping», the label is more than ever in the right direction with this new compilation. At the end of the tunnel, the Black Light and the total ecstasy.
Artist: Various Artists
Release: From Above Vol. 3
Label: Lumiere Noire
Release Date: February 3, 2023
01 – Danse Alice – Higher (Far From Above Edit)
02 – Roe Deers feat. Wolfstream – Can’t Remember
03 – Justine Forever – Viral
04 – Rodion – Mondi Lontanissimi
05 – Damien Vandesande – Star Glide
06 – C.A.R. – Silk Pistol
07 – Frontinn – Correct Settings
08 – Il Est Vilaine – Insurrection
09 – High Season (Chloé & Ben Shemie) – Pavilion 606
10 – Ian Tocor & Joseph Schiano di Lombo – Lost Boys
11 – Simon Says – Virago
12 – Vega Voga – Gradus Ad Parnassum