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Discover ‘Armaun’ by Blendreed: A Sonic Oasis Against Urban Noise.

Kono Vidovic June 17, 2024 55 4 5


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French saxophonist Musina Ebobissé unveils ‘Armaun’, his third release under the Blendreed moniker. Armaun is Ambient Resistance Music Against Urban Noise, taking a stand against the interference of invasive irritants with sublime slow-motion music.

It is four pieces evoke an ecstatic peace within, allowing both artist and listener to breathe deeply. If ‘Armaun’ recalls the fourth world music of Jon Hassell and Eno, it equally finds oblique kinship with André 3000’s New Blue Sun. Likewise, it shares essential DNA with vaporwave and the tape-loop experiments of Terry Riley. 

Blendreed explores the intersection of jazz, ambient, post-rock, and the experimental. This is work of exquisite beauty with a direct function. It provides an antidote to the bombardment of our senses. After unhooking your mind from temporal entanglements, ‘Armaun’ will absorb your soul.

Armaun by Blendreed

Here we ask Blendreed to talk us track by track through this enchanting EP.

Introduction.

My name is Musina, I’m a French saxophonist. I grew up in Strasbourg in a music oriented family and I started playing saxophone at 8. After my studies music and sociology, I moved to Berlin in my mid twenties. Lived and studied some more over there before moving to Paris around 2019 where I still reside now. I’ve been mostly involved in the Paris and Berlin jazz scenes in various project over the years, and Blendreed is my first project in ambient/electronica. 

ARMAUN:

This EP is a selection of improvisations I recorded in fall 2022. At that time, and after my last two Blendreed releases (Moonstreet, Tales of Tides) I was more or less consciously trying to explore further the interactions of saxophone and effect pedals in a beatless, arrythmical context.

Very few edits were made in postprodution. I’m coming from an acoustic music background and although I’m eager to learn more about DAWs, it is a priority to create, manipulate and transform sounds as I play as opposed to arrange it later behind my screen. I try to keep the musical process as immediate, playful and organic as I can because it is more convenient and inspiring to me at this stage.

I explore the special sense of speed and pace that unfolds when there’s no metronomic time. I try to create a meditative yet eventful type of music. It’s the melodies, echoes and loops that shape a different sense timing and motion. 

I’ve always lived in cities. I like the opportunities and diversity of experiences the urban has to offer but it comes at a price. Paris is a very dense and noisy city and the constant hustle and bustle wears me down. Our senses are constantly caught, sollicited, captured. I found myself using my headphones more and more, trying to extract myself from my sonic surroundings, creating my own space to relieve myself from the stress and the pressure. ARMAUN (ambient resistance music against urban noise) is actually equally meant as a serious and humorous statement. Serious because of the reality I just described, but humorous because declaring and labelling your own music as “resistance music” is quite pompous. I really wanted to have an acronym that sounds good though 😉

LANCE L’ÉMOI

Like often with Blendreed the opening interval is a perfect fifth. I love its stability from which I can then develop new melodic lines . A pitch shifted delay (fifth down) is used in early in my pedal chain, which create delayed chords and harmonies. I then loop a small melody fragment that gets transposed and strecht to create a soothing and thoughtful atmosphere. 

Lance l’émoi (literally “throw abuzz/turmoil”) doesn’t have a specific meaning in french. It is an anagram of “melancolia” (took the “h” out) and it’s quite a beautiful coincidence given the EP’s title. 

EOLIAN CALM

I used kind of the same process as in Lance L’émoi with a stretch pitched shifter delay. I placed the microphone closer to my saxophone than usual, allowing a grainy and airy sound. You can hear the blowing and the breathing more. It creates a certain nearness and intimacy, which both contrasts and blends with the swirling echoes of the stereo delays. 

The title is another anagram of melancolia (without the “h”). It sounded cool, I didn’t bother checking if this improvisation was actually in an eolian mode ;). 

AH LILAC OMEN

It is a more harmonic improvisation. The sustain/freeze pedal that I use allows me to keep certain notes longer and create an evolving sequence of triad chords which have common tones. The presence of filters and loops are adding more dynamism and motion to the piece. I stack different delays on top of each other to create complex textures. 

Once again, the title is an anagram of melancolia. 

MR ERASED

A very melodic piece using the same techniques as mentioned above. I use a pedalboard with two stereo paths in parallel for more clarity between the different delays and sustain pedals. I love the ability to dialog with my own melodies and create news phrases in reaction to their transformed echoes.

Conclusion.

Thank you for joining us on this journey through ‘Armaun.’ I hope you found a moment of tranquility and inspiration within these tracks. Special thanks to Blendreed for sharing the stories and creative process behind this mesmerizing EP. Don’t forget to check out the new release on all major platforms and immerse yourself in the soothing sounds of ambient resistance music. Stay tuned for more from Blendreed, and remember to create your own moments of peace amidst the noise.


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Kono Vidovic at Dirty Disco
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Kono Vidovic

DJ | MUSIC CURATOR & SELECTOR | PODCAST MAKER | BLOGGER Professional online interpreneur. Coffee practitioner. Electronic music culture maven. Total music guru. Infuriatingly humble problem solver. Food & sports fanatic.

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