Christophe Chassol, or the virtues of virtuosity

With the pandemic, the world has shrunk. All stuck up, scratched up. How to deal with this sadness strangely? Everyone has their own tips. Christophe Chassol distils his with class, between the drops of the virus. Whether it rains or confines, the musician of Martinican origin has never given up his cosmopolitanism, bursting with encounters, breath and the unexpected; or all that this damn Covid-19 deprived us of. “The pandemic gave me the effect of a time lock, I have the impression of having taken ten years, he recalls. I took care of my child quite a bit, and on the work side, I experimented a lot. It wasn’t that bad, actually. “

He who says he is very ” Swiss knife “ had little trouble finding work to do. This fall, you will see it in a jumble: present an adventurous musical program, « Ground Control ”, which will premiere on October 29 on Arte; indulge in a “Cine-impro” at the Musée d’Orsay, on November 16, on the sidelines of the exhibition “Finally the cinema! “; co-host the program “The four seasons is not just a pizza”, every Friday on France Musique; play on all stages around, from Oslo to Venice, from Olonne-sur-Mer (Vendée) to Istres (Bouches-du-Rhône)…

In recent months, you may have seen it, too: pinning a sound and visual portrait of Brussels, for the very chic Kunstenfestivaldesarts; publish a heady Christmas EP, The Message of Xmas, at the initiative of the jeweler Cartier; sign the soundtrack of one of the rare cinematographic successes of 2020, Simply black… But still: celebrating the memory of his master, Ennio Morricone, at the invitation of a collective of Parisian squatters; celebrate 50 years of Company, the musical by Stephen Sondheim, with a tribute to the hair, « trap » ; play in Revere Mamers Invasion, the action film by singer Arnaud Fleurent-Didier, in postproduction; or collaborate on an album by Philippe Cohen Solal, pioneer of the links between sound and image …

Multimedia creations

This inventory, very incomplete, gives the measure of the eclecticism and the activism of the man. As such, Play, which appeared at the start of the pandemic, is exemplary. After Indiamore (2013) and Big Sun (2015), this is the third « ultrascore » de Chassol, as he designates his multimedia creations, which can be listened to as much as they are viewed. “Ultrascore, basically, that’s the name I gave to a file to clean up my hard drive, he specifies. I celebrate everyday sounds, harmonizing them. It’s not very far from concrete music, or what Steve Reich or Hermeto Pascoal have done in the past. “ Chassol starts with images that he films himself, with a few faithful, and from which he isolates certain sounds: birdsong, children’s cries, various noises … During the editing, he repeats them, stretches them or them. accelerated. Before revealing all their musicality, by grafting them with subtle orchestrations.

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