Sound sample soon

PLATE LUNCH catalog #: PL13


Philippe Blanchard/Christian Renou - play:lunch CD



Philippe Blanchard - Cpt. Cook
1: to buy (acheter) 10:06
2: to let simmer (mitonner) 3:21
3: to season (assaisonner) 5:06
4: to digest (digérer) 5:36
5: to poison (empoisonner) 5:56
Christian Renou - Cuisine et Impedance
6. Cuisine et Impedance 6:24
7. The refrigerator is burned, Pat! 12:48
8. L'evier est comblé 5:26
9. A murderous night (defiency of the gas water heater) 5:07

Total running time: 65:18



The "Play:Lunch" project came from within the German label "Plate Lunch".The idea was to commission two French composers to write a 30 minute piece revolving around food. Philippe Blanchard submitted "Captain Cook", an acousmatic suite in five parts, while Christian Renou proposed the four part electroacoustic piece "Cuisine et Impédence". This was Renou's first release under his own name since he opted for the moniker "Brume" in the early 1980s. Blanchard's piece uses for source material recordings he made in Syria in 1999. Steps in the food cycle (to buy, to season, to digest) are illustrated by one ten minute movement and four shorter pieces. A playful composition, "Captain Cook" is an inventive exercise but it lacks involvement. The second part was awarded a prize by Radio France.
The basic material in Renou's piece was recorded in his kitchen: pots and pans, gas stove, refrigerator, sink, glasses, conversation, etc. He claims no computer was used during the compositional process, which means he manipulated the sound sources with traditional electro-acoustic techniques. Most sounds are left "as is" and assembled to create alien kitchen landscapes. The austerity of the work contrasts heavily with Blanchard's generous exotic palette. It recalls in part Michael Prime's own take on home appliance aesthetics (his CD "Domestic Science"). Fans of Renou's work as "Brume" may feel puzzled and a little left out by this more hermetic opus.

from: François Couture - All-Music Guide, May 2001

Philippe Blanchard (previously part of Lt. Caramel and Pierre Bouchet) and Christian Renou (who is more known as Brume) are likewise the younger generation of electro-acoustics from France. Besides producing great electro-acoustic music, the French are also a bit known for their cooking. Preparing food is the theme on the split CD by Blanchard and Renou. Blanchard takes a rigid division of the various activities involved: buying the food, to simmer, to digest etc. Sounds in the various pieces seem like to be derived from those activities. Renou (who rarely produces music under his under his own name) on the other hand throws all of the stuff in his kitchen he can find in the blender (excuse le mot) and cooks up a nice sonic meal, but it's not that some sounds are rigidly available for one piece. In regard of the label name, this is a very nice thought of thematic CD, which could be a nice series. The only thing missing is a recipe.

from: VITAL WEEKLY # 255, December 2000 - by: Frans De Waard

Play:Lunch is an electronic concept album, the concept being to cook lunch. So Philippe Blanchard goes shopping in a Syrian market, chops up his veg and meat, boils fiercely and uses the resultant recording as musical source material. Blanchard has a way of fading out his pieces frequently, as if to express time passing, that renders them quiet filmic. Meanwhile Christian Renou, who usually operates under the alias "Brume", employs his kitchen environment as an instrument, and processes the result. Renou points out that he doesn't use a computer; is this a boast, like tightrope walking without safety net? The whole album is sadly unengaging, an almost random assemblage of unremarkable sounds that has the dry smell of a university electronic department about it. Cute concept, indegestible result.

from: THE WIRE # 202 (UK), December 2000 - written by: Clive Bell


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