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ELODIE (TIMO VAN LUIJK & ANDREW CHALK) - La Porte Ouverte

Format: LP
Label & Cat.Number: Faraway Press 029
Release Year: 2017
Note: 2016 studio recordings feat. TOM JAMES SCOTT (LIBEREZ), moving their sounds to new areas..." Elodie have jazz and minimalism in their bones, and feeling in their hearts, and by broadening their palette so effectively on La Porte Ouverte they have created an album as close to unique as you can get in 2016." [Joseph Burnett/Dusted Mag] lim. 300
Price (incl. 19% VAT): €16.50


More Info

La Porte Ouverte was recorded by Timo van Luijk, Andrew Chalk and Tom James Scott and was cut by Noel Summerville at 33/45 in London.
Available in a standard only edition and cut at 45 RPM for higher fidelity.
350 copies pressed.
Sleeve is printed in reverse board with poly-lined inner sleeve.
Any orders are always shipped vinyl out of main sleeve to prevent seam ripping.

'An open door...
an exit... an entrance...
a new horizon
we never know where we are...
as long as the door remains open
there will be light...'

www.farawaypress.info


"Few musical artists have explored the notion of quietness as a virtue — and, let’s face it, as a reaction to the fetishization of high volumes in rock music — with as much rigor as Andrew Chalk and Timo van Luijk do in their Elodie duo. Performing live in about 2012 or so, opening for Eyvind Kang and Jessika Kenney, they held the audience in rapt silence, Chalk gently — barely — caressing the strings of his acoustic guitar and van Luijk only occasionally whistling with unbelievable restraint into his flute, was remarkable. Not to mention bold. It’s a potentially risky approach, but the control van Luijk and Chalk have in their interactions (not to mention their musical skill) means they have consistently been able to evince new forms of minimalism.

For La Porte Ouverte, originally issued in 2016 on cassette, the duo is joined by Liberez pianist Tom James Scott, and his keys, added to subtly applied textures from other instruments, lead to a slight change in the overall aesthetic of Elodie. There was always a difference between Elodie live and their studio output, but on this album they shake off the shackles of lowercase altogether, removing the constraints of that genre’s formalism and delving into a delicate, moonlit realm somewhere between barroom jazz and modern minimalism.

On most tracks, Tom Scott’s piano acts like a semi-regular metronome: emerging gradually but with confidence, delineating the atmosphere with patient, slow-building clusters of notes, arranged like outlines. Within — and even without — the resulting canvasses, Timo van Luijk and Andrew Chalk have the space to reflectively dab their own considered shades, reacting both to the piano and each other. “Matin de Marbre” shimmers like light on a marble statue, a thread-like keyboard note drifting anxiously in and out of tremulous piano notes. There are hints of Angelo Badalamenti’s compositions for David Lynch, especially the Straight Story soundtrack, in the aching tone of the instruments; it’s equally easy to imagine a lot of the tracks on La Porte Ouverte forming the backing track for a song sung by Isabella Rosselini in Blue Velvet. “La Marche” is more austere, with piano notes struck almost angrily by Scott only to find no echo in van Luijk and Chalk’s unflinching keyboard drone. Somewhere deep in the mix, van Luijk’s flute seems to echo like a defeated cry, but that could just be my ears finding textures that aren’t there. Or maybe they are, it’s hard to tell. As an entire album, La Porte Ouverte can have that effect, especially on the longer tracks.

On average, the tracks on the first half are most minimal and quiet, borrowing most noticeably from lowercase traditions in the sparseness of the piano notes and barely audible flourishes on flute or guitar. Scott’s playing will instantly appeal to fans of Morton Feldman or Michael Nyman, whilst the keyboard arrangements evoke the ambient works of Fennesz or David Sylvian’s mid-1980s work (sans the vocals, of course). “Le Jardin Onirique” is the side’s longest work, and also the most abstract, fittingly given the title. A dreamlike quality drifts through much of the entire album, the earthiest moment coming with the emergence of Andrew Chalk’s guitar on “Par la Main,” as he sketches out a gentle series of scales to dance hesitantly with Scott’s piano motif, rewarding listeners with the most intimate piece on the album.

In contrast, the second side features synths and keyboards more prominently, although don’t go thinking the results are lush or dense. Elodie make a virtue of stillness and calm, and the lengthier tracks (of eight, only three feature on side B) somewhat paradoxically underline this further. The title track drifts on a curtain of synthetic strings into which piano notes drop like rain into a pond. It’s a profoundly moving and melancholic piece, its apparent simplicity hiding a range of depths. Tom James Scott really shines, delicately deploying his notes only when necessary, and the synth arrangement is positively haunting. I’m not sure what the title, which translates as “The Open Door,” means, beyond maybe a sense of welcome, which this track certainly carries in abundance. The organ-drenched “Lumen” is possibly the loudest Elodie has ever got, the venerable church instrument building a foundation over which piano and vibraphone notes swirl like motes of dust caught in a shaft of light. Again, I find myself reaching for Badalamenti, but in truth that’s a lazy shorthand for music that is both emotionally-resonant and cinematic in scope. Elodie have jazz and minimalism in their bones, and feeling in their hearts, and by broadening their palette so effectively on La Porte Ouverte they have created an album as close to unique as you can get in 2016." [Joseph Burnett/Dusted Mag]


"Utterly sublime ambient jazz from consummate, lower case collaborators, Timo Van Lujik and Andrew Chalk, joined here on piano by Tom James Scott (Charcoal Owls, Liberez) in a subtly breathtaking LP of melting romantic gestures and spectral electronics. Big recommendation if you're into David Lynch, Bohren Und Der Club of Gore, Af Ursin, Oren Ambarchi...

Their 8th album - alternately released like all previous Elodie LPs since 2011 on the duo's respective labels, La Scie Dorée and Faraway Press - they navigate thee finest line of anticipatory tension and vaporous release, resulting in some of the most tender, unshowy yet arresting musical expressions that we’ve heard in years.

In eight parts they expand, contract and drift off on shafts of moonlight, oscillating shorter vignettes which appear like magnetically suspended bonsai trees - as with the hyaline delicacy of Matin de Marbre or the latinate acoustic guitar that slides between the silken ambient tones and Feldman-meets-Sakamoto keys of Par La Main - with longer sections such as the midnight stroller Le Jardin Onirique and the B-side’s sail-away suite of three pieces, including the unmissable title track, afford teasingly intangible visions of a sound which we’re sure everyone can agree, is some of the most beautiful music imaginable.

We were lucky enough to catch the duo in this record’s line-up with Tom James Scott at Salford’s Islington Mill in 2016, where we witnessed them totally silence the room with an almighty, barely-there demonstration of how to enchant a crowd. As with everyone else in the room, we were duly pinned to our seat for the duration, with incidental creaking chairs and refrigerator hum only heightening the sublime tension whilst waiting for the trio’s next, curious jazz chord in sequence, or when attempting to follow their chromatic gasses off into the ether.

Like the weeks after seeing their show last year, you just kinda want to make sure everyone in earshot knows about or can at least get a glimpse of this music. It just seems to reset everything..." [Boomkat]