Tag: Quebec City QC

New Video: Jonathan Personne Shares Gorgeous “À présent”

Montreal-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, animator and visual artist Jonathan Robert may be best known for being a co-founder and co-lead vocalist of internationally acclaimed JOVM mainstay act Corridor. But Robert is also an acclaimed solo artist, writing and performing as Jonathan Personne.

Robert’s solo debut as Jonathan Personne, Histoire Naturelle, sonically drew from desert dream pop, Western Spaghetti rock and jangle pop. Thematically, the album’s material focused on the potential end of the world. Of course, with the album’s timing, it might have hit the nail a bit too hard on the head.

His sophomore Jonathan Personne album, 2020’s Guillaume Chiasson-product Disparitions was primarily written while the Montreal-based artist was touring with Corridor, and came about in a quick and fluid fashion. While the album saw Robert continuing upon the hook-driven yet intimate and sensitive songwriting that has won him acclaim as a solo artist, Disparitions was largely inspired by moment when music became a source of profound disgust. “I spent a lot of time touring away from home. Towards the end I felt like I was reluctantly going to do something that I had longed wished for,” Robert explained in press notes. 

The Montreal-based singer/songwriter began 2022 by signing with Bonsound, who will be releasing his third Jonathan Personne album, the Emmanuel Éthier-produced Jonathan Personne on Friday. Written alone on an acoustic guitar in a cottage, the album took an unexpected turn, when the Montreal-based artist went to Quebec City-based Le Pantoum with his friends and frequent collaborators Samuel Gougoux (drums), Julian Perreault (guitar), Mathieu Cloutier (bass) and the aforementioned Éthier (violin, synths, mellotron, vocals and production). The album’s material features arrangements centered around electric guitar, 12-string acoustic guitar, Rhodes, timpani, mellotron, synths, violin and even samples, the eight-song album continues Robert’s reputation for crafting material inspired by 60s pop and Spaghetti Westerns but with samples from obscure TV shows and movies, blistering rock grooves and extravagant guitar licks, the album features a more polished production than previous releases. 

Packaged with a Jonathan Robert illustration in which two children discover the remains of a dead body, the album thematically is rooted in duality: While continuing his reputation for breezy guitar pop, the album’s material is simultaneously brutal and sinister, yet candid. The album’s material evokes a mysterious world where ghosts, the supernatural, fate and broken characters with broken lives all intertwine and interact.

Featuring a Jonathan Robert illustration in which two children discover the remains of a dead body as its album cover art, the album thematically is rooted in duality: Continuing his reputation for breezy guitar pop, the album is also brutal, sinister yet candid. The end result is an album that evokes a mysterious world where ghosts, the supernatural, fate and broken characters with broken lives intertwine. 

In the lead-up to the album’s release later this week, I’ve managed to write about two album singles:

  • Un homme sans visage” a deceptively breezy song centered around an arrangement of gorgeous Mellotron-driven melody, jangling guitar, simple yet propulsive rhythms, bursts of lap steep, big hooky choruses and Robert’s plaintive falsetto. While continuing to be lovingly inspired by the sounds of the late 60s, the song is a bittersweet, modern fable of sorts that tells a story about a man, whose face is badly burned in a fire. 
  • Rock & roll sur ton chemin,” a deceptively straightforward rocker centered around a loose and breezy surf rock-like riff and a churning groove paired with dreamily delivered falsetto harmonies and Robert’s penchant for big, catchy hooks paired with subtle amounts of bongo, Mellotron and whistles. But despite it’s breezy air, the song is bittersweet and drenched with irony with the song being a tribute to dying art forms and those, who still practice them. “Devoting oneself to a genre destined to failure, there’s something pathetic about it, but also something very beautiful,” Robert says.

Jonathan Personne‘s third and latest single, “À présent” sounds indebted to Scott Walker‘s orchestral pop and Phil Spector‘s famous Wall of Sound production but with a greatest emphasis on the jangling rhythm section, which subtly pushes the whole affair into more contemporary realm. Thematically, the song depicts a world where excess, speed and love coexist in a setting that’s kind of a synthesis of Romeo and Juliet and James Dean’s life with the song’s central couple dying in a horrific accident.

Animated by Mathieu Larone and Henry McClellan, the accompanying video for “À présent” is abstract but centered in dualities, evoking the album’s themes: the animation is both childlike and disturbing, broodingly dark and colorful. But throughout, the intention was to present the optimistic vision of a new beginning.

“Mathieu and Henry were able to translate the song into images, and it’s just beautiful! It’s like an excerpt from the movie Fantasia, only weirder, darker, and done by the NFB rather than Disney,” Jonathan Robert says.

New Audio: Jonathan Personne Shares Groovy New Single

Jonathan Robert is a Montreal-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, animator and visual artist, who is best known for being a co-founder and co-lead vocalist of the internationally acclaimed JOVM mainstay act Corridor.

Now, if you’ve been frequenting this site over the past couple of years, you may recall that Robert released his solo debut as Jonathan PersonneHistoire Naturelle, an album that sonically drew from desert dream pop, Western Spaghetti rock and jangle pop. Thematically, the album focused on the potential end of the world. (With the album’s timing, it may have hit the nail on the head a bit too hard, eh?)

Robert’s Jonathan Personne sophomore album, 2020’s Guillaume Chiasson-product Disparitions was primarily written while the Montreal-based artist was touring with Corridor, and came about in a quick and fluid fashion. While seeing him continuing upon the hook-driven yet intimate and sensitive songwriting that has won him acclaim,  Disparitions was largely inspired by a moment when music became a source of profound disgust for him. “I spent a lot of time touring away from home. Towards the end I felt like I was reluctantly going to do something that I had longed wished for,” Robert explained in press notes. 

Earlier this year, Robert signed with Montreal-based label Bonsound, who will be releasing his third Jonathan Personne album, the Emmanuel Éthier-produced Jonathan Personne on August 26, 2022. Written alone on an acoustic guitar in a cottage, the album took an unexpected turn, when the Montreal-based artist went to Quebec City-based Le Pantoum with his friends and frequent collaborators Samuel Gougoux (drums), Julian Perreault (guitar), Mathieu Cloutier (bass) and the aforementioned Éthier (violin, synths, mellotron, vocals and production). Featuring arrangements centered around electric guitar, 12-string acoustic guitar, Rhodes, timpani, mellotron, synths, violin and even samples, the eight-song album continues Robert’s reputation for crafting material inspired by 60s pop and Spaghetti Westerns but with samples from obscure TV shows and movies, blistering rock grooves and extravagant guitar licks, the album features a more polished production than previous releases.

Featuring a Jonathan Robert illustration in which two children discover the remains of a dead body as its album cover art, the album thematically is rooted in duality: Continuing his reputation for breezy guitar pop, the album is also brutal, sinister yet candid. The end result is an album that evokes a mysterious world where ghosts, the supernatural, fate and broken characters with broken lives intertwine.

Last month, Bonsound and Robert released the album’s first single, “Un homme sans visage” a deceptively breezy song featuring an arrangement of gorgeous Mellotron-driven melody, jangling guitar, simple yet propulsive rhythms, bursts of lap steep, big hooky choruses and Robert’s plaintive falsetto. While continuing to be lovingly inspired by the sounds of the late 60s, But the song is a bittersweet, sort of modern fable that tells a story about a man, whose face is badly burned in a fire.

Jonathan Personne‘s second and latest single, “Rock & roll sur ton chemin,” is a deceptive straightforward rocker centered around a loose and breezy surf rock-like riff and a churning groove paired with dreamily delivered falsetto harmonies and Robert’s penchant for big, catchy hooks. Along with that, the song features subtle bit of bongo, Mellotron and whistles, which add to the song’s breezy vibes. But much like its predecessor, the song is actually bittersweet: The song is a tribute to dying art forms and those who still practice them. “Devoting oneself to a genre destined to failure, there’s something pathetic about it, but also something very beautiful,” Robert says.

New Video: Jonathan Personne Shares Deceptively Breezy “Un homme sans visage”

Jonathan Robert is a Montreal-based singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, who is best known for being a co-founder and co-lead vocalist of the internationally acclaimed JOVM mainstay act Corridor. Robert is also known for his work as an animator and visual artist.

Back in 2019 Robert released his solo-debut as Jonathan Personne, Histoire Naturelle, an album that sonically drew from desert dream pop, Western Spaghetti rock and jangle pop. Thematically, the album focused on the potential end of the world. (Hitting the nail on the head a bit too hard, perhaps?)

Robert’s Jonathan Personne sophomore album, 2020’s Guillaume Chiasson-product Disparitions was primarily written while the Montreal-based artist was touring with Corridor, and came about in a quick and fluid fashion. While seeing him continuing with his particular brand of intimate and sensitive songwriting, Disparitions was largely inspired by a moment when music became a source of profound disgust for him. “I spent a lot of time touring away from home. Towards the end I felt like I was reluctantly going to do something that I had longed wished for,” Robert explained in press notes.

When he was able to do, Robert went to Quebec City-based Le Pantoum, where he and producer Guillaume Chiasson used analog recording techniques to record the album’s arrangements of electric guitar, 12-string acoustic guitar, Rhodes and timpani, as well as electronic samples, mellotron and synths.

Robert recently signed with Montreal-based label Bonsound, who will release his latest single, the Emmanuel Éthier-produced “Un homme sans visage.” “Un homme sans visage,” sees the Montreal-based artist eschewing the dense and complex arrangements on his previously released material, and going for a simpler, almost minimalist approach. Centered around a gorgeous Mellotron melody, jangling guitar, a simple yet propulsive rhythm, bursts of lap steel, Robert’s plaintive falsetto and big hooky choruses, the new single manages to be breezy yet deliberately crafted — while being lovingly inspired by the sounds of the late 60s. But under the breeziness is a song that’s actually a bittersweet sort of modern fable about a man, whose face is badly burned in a fire.

Directed by Robert, the accompanying video plays with shadows and light, amplifying contrasts and the image’s grain to create a dusty, old-timey aesthetic, while capturing the artist performing the song.

New Audio: JOVM Mainstays New Bleach Team up with Ariane Roy on an Atmospheric and Brooding New Single

Quebec City-based indie pop act and JOVM mainstays New Bleach features a duo known throughout Quebec for their work in acclaimed Francophone indie rock act Caravane — — Dominic Pelletier and Raphaël Potvin. And with the release of New Bleach’s first four singles, Pelletier and Potvin’s newest project proved to be a marked sonic departure from their work in Caravane: 

“Awake,” the duo’s debut as New Bleach was an Oracular Spectacular-era MGMT-like single centered around a profound philosophical question: “What if death was just a dream?”
“Silver Lining,” a Quiet Storm R&B meets Beacon-like track that’s one part old-school love song and one part plea for hope in a seemingly hopeless and bleak world. 
“High.” Kraftwerk meets 80s New Wave-like track centered around the age-old desire to get into the car for a road trip — and maybe pull over to do some hallucinogens and daydream. 
“You,” a slow-burning and atmospheric track full of the aching longing and regret of one’s lingering ghosts that featured Ghostly Kisses‘ Margaux Sauvé. 

The JOVM mainstays started 2021 with a gorgeously cinematic live session filmed in the Le Massif de Charlevoix, Quebec. Filmed in a mountainous forest cleaning, just off the coast of the St. Lawrence River, with a morning fog gently lifting, the sessions take place over the course of a day and night with the duo performing behind a futuristic lighting rig. The session features three singles I’ve written about previously — “Awake,” Silver Lining,” and “High.” The setting is breathtakingly gorgeous — in a way that only could be Quebec. 

Building upon a growing profile, the Quebec City-based duo’s debut EP Impressions was released last Friday through Coyote Records. And just before the EP’s release, the Quebec City JOVM mainstays released “Stranger,” a breezy and vaporous synth pop number centered around delicate and shimmering synth arpeggios, ethereal vocals, skittering polyrhythm and a sinuous bass line that sonically brought 80s synth soul and pop like Billy Ocean to mind. But at its core, the song asked thematically big, existential questions — namely, if true happiness is actually possible.

Interestingly, the EP’s latest single is the slow-burning and atmospheric “Night.” Centered around an achingly tender vocal melody and boy-girl harmonizing between New Bleach’s Dominic Pelletier and Ariane Roy, twinkling synths, a propulsive bass line, the song evokes brooding, late night/early morning solitude while slowly unfolding into a rousingly anthemic coda. Written in a single night of solitude, the song invites the listener to meditate on the simple things that keep life worth living — and keep us alive.

New Video: JOVM Mainstays New Bleach Return with a Trippy Visual for Deceptively Breezy New Single

Quebec City-based indie pop act and JOVM mainstays New Bleach features a duo known throughout Quebec for their work in acclaimed Francophone indie rock act Caravane — — Dominic Pelletier and Raphaël Potvin. And with the release of New Bleach’s first four singles, Pelletier and Potvin’s newest project proved to be a marked sonic departure from their work in Caravane:

“Awake,” the duo’s debut as New Bleach was an Oracular Spectacular-era MGMT-like single centered around a profound philosophical question: “What if death was just a dream?”
“Silver Lining,” a Quiet Storm R&B meets Beacon-like track that’s one part old-school love song and one part plea for hope in a seemingly hopeless and bleak world. 
“High.” Kraftwerk meets 80s New Wave-like track centered around the age-old desire to get into the car for a road trip — and maybe pull over to do some hallucinogens and daydream. 
“You,” a slow-burning and atmospheric track full of the aching longing and regret of one’s lingering ghosts that featured Ghostly Kisses‘ Margaux Sauvé. 

The JOVM mainstays started 2021 with a gorgeously cinematic live session filmed in the Le Massif de Charlevoix, Quebec. Filmed in a mountainous forest cleaning, just off the coast of the St. Lawrence River, with a morning fog gently lifting, the sessions take place over the course of a day and night with the duo performing behind a futuristic lighting rig. The session features three singles I’ve written about previously — “Awake,” Silver Lining,” and “High.” The setting is breathtakingly gorgeous — in a way that only could be Quebec. 

Building upon a growing profile, the Quebec City-based duo’s debut EP Impressions is slated for a May 14, 2021 through Coyote Records. “Stranger,” the first single off the soon-to-be released EP is a breezy and vaporous synth pop number centered around delicate and shimmering synth arpeggios, ethereal vocals, skittering polyrhythm and a sinuous bass line. Sonically, the track reminds me of 80s synth soul and pop like Billy Ocean, but the song’s breeziness is deceptive. The song thematically asks big, existential questions — namely if true happiness is actually possible.

Directed by the members of New Bleach and Maxyme Gagné, the recently released video for “Stranger” is a stylish and trippy visual that features one of the band’s member several bandaged up as though he barely survived through a horrible accident while watching a series of commercials and terribly tragic news events on an old portable TV.

New Video: Millimetrik Teams Up with New Bleach on a Euphoric and Shimmering Banger

Quebec City-based DJ and electronic music producer Millimetrik has been remarkably prolific: over the course of his decade-plus career, he has released 11 albums that have seen him bounce back and forth between several different electronic music styles and sub-genres. His 12th album Sun-drenched is slated for a May 28, 2021 release through Coyote Records.

The album’s latest single “Sunlight at Bay of Plenty” is an aptly sun-drenched and euphoric bit of Balearic-inspired house centered around shimmering synth arpeggios, tweeter and woofer rattling thump, an infectious hook, and a dreamily atmospheric bridge. New Bleach’s Dominic Pelletier contributes achingly delicate and plaintive vocals expressing a restless desire to move forward to bigger and brighter things, nostalgia for good times and good people that have to be left behind in order to move forward. All things are fleeting but enjoy what you have, when you have it, the song seems to say. It won’t be forever.

Directed by Jeff Malo, the recently released video is a psychedelic fever dream that at points nods at Peter Gabriel’s “Shock the Monkey” with two characters in elaborately designed makeup, superimposed tropical landscapes and New Age psychedelia.

Live Footage: JOVM Mainstays New Bleach Live from Le Massif Charlevoix

Quebec City-based indie pop act and JOVM mainstays New Bleach features a duo known about Quebec for their work in acclaimed Francophone indie rock act Caravane — — Dominic Pelletier and Raphaël Potvin. Through the release of four singles last year, New Bleach proved to be a decided sonic departure from Pelletier’s and Potvin’s previous work:

“Awake,” the duo’s New Bleach debut was an Oracular Spectacular-era MGMT-like single centered around a profound philosophical question: “What if death was just a dream?”
“Silver Lining,” a Quiet Storm R&B meets Beacon-like track that’s one part old-school love song and one part plea for hope in a seemingly hopeless and bleak world.
“High.” Kraftwerk meets 80s New Wave-like track centered around the age-old desire to get into the car for a road trip — and maybe pull over to do some hallucinogens and daydream.
“You,” a slow-burning and atmospheric track full of the aching longing and regret of one’s lingering ghosts that featured Ghostly Kisses‘ Margaux Sauvé.

The JOVM mainstays start 2021 with a gorgeously cinematic live session filmed in the Le Massif de Charlevoix, Quebec. Filmed in a mountainous forest cleaning, just off the coast of the St. Lawrence River, with a morning fog gently lifting, the sessions take place over the course of a day and night with the duo performing behind a futuristic lighting rig. The session features three singles I’ve written about previously — “Awake,” Silver Lining,” and “High.” The setting is breathtakingly gorgeous — in a way that only could be Quebec.

“We wanted to bring our songs to life in a setting that would do justice to the beauty of the landscapes of our native Quebec,” Pelletier and Potvin explain. “We thank Le Massif de Charlevoix from the bottom of our hearts for allowing us to fulfill our slightly crazy dreams.

New Video: JOVM Mainstays New Bleach Teams Up with Ghostly Kisses’ Margaux Sauvé on an Atmospheric and Dreamy New Single

Throughout the course of this year, I’ve written quite a bit about the Quebec City-based indie pop act and latest JOVM mainstays New Bleach. New Bleach — Dominic Pelletier and Raphaël Potvin — features a duo known across Quebec for their work in acclaimed Francophone indie rock act Caravane.

2020 has been a rather busy year for the duo of Pelletier and Potvin. They’ve released three attention-grabbing singles that have been decided sonic departures from their work with Caravane:

Their debut single as New Bleach, the Oracular Spectacular-era MGMT-like single “Awake,” a track centered around the philosophical question: “What if death was just a dream?”
The atmospheric Quiet Storm R&B meets Beacon-like “Silver Lining,” a track that’s part old-school love song and part plea for hope in a seemingly hopeless and bleak world.
The Kraftwerk and 80s New Wave-like “High.” which expressed the age-old desire to get in your car for a road trip — and maybe pull over to do some hallucinogens and daydream.

New Bleach’s fourth single of this year is the slow-burning and atmospheric “You.” Centered around alternating ethereal and tender vocals from New Bleach’s Pelletier and Ghostly Kisses’ Margaux Sauvé paired with glistening synths, skittering beats and a sinuous bass line, “You” is full of the desperately aching longing that only seems to come from the lingering ghosts of one’s past.

Co-directed by Maxyme Gagné and the members of New Bleach, the recently released video for “You” is an equally slow-burning fever dream mostly shot in the snowy Quebec woods and employs the use of reflections through refracted and busted mirrors, distorted imagery and more. Somehow, the video seems to emphasize the bitter chill;l of late fall in Quebec — and the bitterness of longing when you can’t quite have what you want or need.

New Video: Montreal’s Sophia Bel Releases a Sultry, Genre-Defying Banger

Born to a Quebecois father and a Dutch-American mother, the rising Quebec City-born, Montreal-based pop artist Sophia Bel grew up fascinated by trip-hop and drum ‘n’ bass — during the era of The Spice Girls, Britney Spears, and Christina Aguilera. Bel’s work often finds her unafraid to cover vastly different sonic territory with the focus on capturing the right feeling in that particular moment. Interestingly, for her, pop is one of many aesthetics that she commonly pulls from and not a goal to achieve.

Along with pop, Bel plucks from underground electronic music, skater punk, guitar folk and even Quebecois hippie music to craft a rich, difficult to pigeonhole soundscape that has received praise from Wonderland, The Line of Best Fit, Complex and Clout among a growing list of others.

The rising Quebec City-born, Montreal-based artist has always been slightly out of step with her immediate surroundings. Her black fingernail polish made her the target of bullies at her suburban Quebec City school, earning her the nickname “Princess of the Dead.” Her recently released sophomore EP Princess of the Dead, Vol. II finds Bel reclaiming her identity, while marking her first release through Bonsound Records.

So far two singles have been released off the EP, “You’re Not Real You’re Just A Ghost” and “Voyage Astral.” The EP’s third and latest single “No More” is a slickly produced, breakneck,. meshing of alt pop, trap, house music and contemporary electro pop centered around shimmering synth arpeggios, explosive industrial clang and clatter, skittering beats and Bel’s plaintive and ethereal vocals. The song is written and produced to capture an intense and particular sensation: “I wanted to explore the dark emotions that come when learning to assert oneself, Bel explains. The anger, the bittersweet nostalgia of a lost fantasy. The mysterious tones of this song are paired with a drum ‘n’ bass inspired hook that creates an exhilarating rush of intensity.”

Directed by Jean-François Sauvé, the recently released video for “No More” places Bel into an empty and abandoned warehouse, where she’s imprisoned and watched over by an AI that attempts to capture every vacillating of its subject. The visuals manage to crackle, jolt and lurch with a seemingly brash,. supernatural energy while throwing the viewer into a dark and uncertain universe that kind of feels like our own.

Gaspard Eden is a restlessly creative, emerging Quebec City-based singer/songwriter and musician. Eden’s full-length debut Soft Power is slated for release later this year through Coyote Records, and the album’s material reportedly finds the emerging Quebec-based singer/songwriter and musician pushing his sound in a completely new direction from his previously released work while evoking a wide ranger of emotions through melodic soundscapes and poetic lyricism. 

So far, I’ve written about two of Soft Power‘s singles: the brooding, jangle pop track “Pancakes,” a track centered around Eden’s plaintive falsetto and an achingly wistful nostalgia for a seemingly simpler past — and the ethereal, Soft to the touch-era Jef Barbara-like “Automatic Dreams,” which featured Eden’s longtime friend, singer/songwriter Gabrielle Shonk

“Baby Black Hole,” the album’s third and latest single is a slow-burning, Quiet Storm-like R&B take on shimmering indie rock, centered around Eden’s achingly tender vocals that’s a dorky come-on to an object of desire, full of goofy science fiction references. There’s also a bit of mournful clarinet, which adds to the song’s mischievous yet sultry vibe.