Jul 14 2017
There’s a dual personality to the debut album from l’Oumigmag that is more than a little bit appealing. The demeanor of Territoires indicates it’s an introvert at heart. The ambient drone that opens “Nord” and the bass arco that quickly follows, and the contemplative acoustic guitar that leads out on “Lac Arthabaska” or, similarly, the same tones to introduce “Est” all speak to a personality that prefers to be alone in a quiet room and nothing or nobody to interact with. But eventually each of these tunes breaks into a folksy melody and a lively cadence and some passes at wordless vocals, and it leads to the conclusion that no matter how much Territoires would prefer some isolation, it also possesses an unquenchable need to express an outgoing personality, too.
The music crosses a few genre borders. There’s some modern jazz mixed in with some regional folk and indie pop. For a point of reference, the immediate comparisons are to late-career Oregon and the Tunnel Six ensemble. Even when they develop a brisk chatter, the quintet l’Oumigmag maintain a moody ambiance, always recognizing the influence of the introverted and extroverted natures. There’s no end to the nuturing patience given to melodies to reach full bloom. It sometimes takes a little while before they fully manifest within a song, but when they do, it leads to all kinds of prettiness. There’s a couple guests who add their own wordless vocals to those of the ensemble’s. The vocal contributions tend to be brief and effective, behaving as just another instrument in the community of sounds.
Territoires is an enjoyable recording and a very promising debut.
Your album personnel: Stéphane Diamantakiou (double bass), Alex Dodier (tenor & soprano saxophones), Philippe Lussier-Baillargeon (drums, percussion), Sébastien Sauvageau (guitar) and guests: Normand Miron, Ariane Vaillancourt (voices).
Released on The 270 Sessions.
Listen to more of the album on the artist’s Bandcamp page.
Music from Montreal, Québec.
Here’s a promo video that incorporates the song “Est.”
I’ll be featuring a couple more of their videos in an upcoming post, so be sure to check back soon.