WQXR (New York)
, May 2011
Q2’s Album of the Week
Even if you didn’t know Florent Ghys’s provenance (he was born in Lyon, France), you’d be able to immediately detect some Gallic roots in his newest, and impossibly chic EP, Baroque Tardif: Soli. Take, for instance, the album’s opening—a staccato upright bass (Ghys) accompanied with rhythmic clapping, a combination that wouldn’t be out of place in a smoky, underground Latin Quarter café.
But Ghys doesn’t linger in the old-school world of boatneck tees and Goddard films for too long. In fact, he generally can’t stay in any aural spot in these 24 beguiling minutes. He flirts with a modern, experimental vibe on Simplement, which mimics a conversation between Ghys and Aline Brunet both rhythmically and melodically. Setting bass to conversation, Ghys pulls out the lyrical qualities of everyday talking and the conversational aspects of music. Ghys then jumps into Ravelian waters as performer and composer with the shimmering pianino work Coma Carus before drying off with the insouciant homage to blinking lights, Clignotants. Bèchamel brings the EP to a hauntingly dissonant close, leaving us anxious for the remaining Baroque Tardif EPs due for release from Cantaloupe.