November 21, 2020
Small Scale Music SSM 023
By Ken Waxman
A dialogue from a single musician, Montreal’s Yannick Chayer has designed this CD’s 10 tracks so that his soprano saxophone is constantly reacting to or against programmed samples of reed improvisations and other intonations propelled by his synthesizer. Rife with static crackles, noises and pauses, the results are as changeable as if he was duetting with another player
With advances in programming, timbres from the synthesizer take on multiple identities from bagpipe-like tremors to plastic kazoo-like screeches; yet most frequently organ-like motifs serve as several tracks’ continuum. Meanwhile Chayer’s parallel acoustic tone is snarly and metallic dedicated to high velocity fluttering or calm multiphonics.
Extended tracks such as Oraganisation Off and Master Forgery play with the implicit plasticity of the program. For instance the former positions a biting reed solo atop massed saxophone timbres and climaxes as the soloist squeals past altissimo with key percussion echoes below. The latter track balances calliope-like patterning that remains unchanged as vibrating reed split tones expand to twitters and trills, sometimes vamping roughly against one another.
Like a Pimp may be the defining track however as newer samples keep being added to the stop-time exposition so that a simple melody is present from a singular reed line along with electronic flanging and reverberating tongue pumps.
Chayer’s stated aim is creating reed programs that move between analog noise and musique concrète. Adding s hearty dose of improvisation Gebilde proves that he has attained this goal.
-for The Whole Note November 2020