Montreal boasts quite an exciting improvised/underground music scene these days, popularized by the likes of GYBE!, Shalabi Effect, Fly Pan Am, David Kristian, Mitchell Akiyama, One-Speed Bike, Alexandre St-Onge and many others. Leading the second generation of experimenters we are very pleased to introduce Philippe Lambert, aka Monstre, with his debut full-length release, Sucre 3.
Monstre is one of the most interesting live acts currently operating in the bustling local underground, with performances ranging from full-on noise assaults, to Balinese style jams, quirky electro-pop to psychedelic-style freak outs!
The recording is constructed mainly with voice-based sounds, processed, looped, treated as well as various toy instruments, primitive drum machines and samplers. We will refer to Monstre’s sound as “harsh pop”. In this respect it may remind some people of the beautiful music of Slap Happy Humphrey, a supergroup fronted by Alchemy/Hijokaiden’s Jojo Hiroshige. They released a record years ago on the Public Bath label that remains to this day one of finest mixtures of noise and pop.
Monstre has a very interesting approach to music-making, not to mention a gift for creating incredibly catchy songs. Sucre 3 is certainly the most playful release to surface on Alien8 so far, but fits quite nicely with our output from the likes of Masonna, David Kristian and Shalabi Effect. It may seem like a stretch comparing Monstre to those three artists, but noise, psychedelic and techno are some of the main ingredients here. After all, we are talking about an artist who is making pop under influence of folks like Demetrio Stratos, vocalist of Italy’s 70s avant-garde group Area that also featured Walter Marchetti. Monstre is also influenced by the likes of Robert Ashley, Henri Chopin and more current sound artists as well.
Comparisons can definitely be drawn to Boredoms main man Eye, with regard to the abstract style of Monstre’s methods of sound construction, and also to the later work from Richard D. James which experiments with voice. Tracks like Sugar Rainbow and Moonlove really evoke past memories of Aphex Twin and Boards of Canada despite the fact that you can’t really refer to what Monstre is doing as techno. There is also a perceptible influence of trance, Balinese and Kraut style movements on Sucre 3, but always remaining playful. Littlestars is an awesome vocal drone that is quite similar to masterpiece vocal drone between Eye and John Zorn, called Bad Hawkwind. Sucre 3 is handsomely packaged in a glossy digi-pack with full color artwork done by the artist himself as a child.