Jacques Berrocal,David Fenech, Vincent E - Transcodex [Klanggalerie - 2023]
Transcodex is an eleven-track album that finds low-key dub bound-to-moody beat scapes touched by atmospheric jazz horn wails and subtle surreal ethnic electronica. All topped with a mix of spoken to semi-sung ( largely in French-tongued) vocals
The album brings together three important figures within French experimental sound/ music scenes. There’s trumpeter, singer, and composer Jacques Berrocal- who has been actively working since the early ’70s. Composer and improviser David Fenech- who has been active since the early 90s- and involved with the Peu Importe project. And visual & sound artists Vincent Epplay- who has been creating work since the early 2000s.Roger Batty
The whole album is a fairly very loose/ largely laid-back affair- though it's often a surreally-tinged ride. We open with tick-tocking beats, misty & mystical horn hoover, and tight band twang bass of “Catafalque". Moving onto slow bouncing bass, wavering chanted vocals, and snaking dub beats of “Chapelle Ganache”. Though to the didgeridoo-like hover, meets wondering horn honk, and slowing scatting-to-bobbing electro tones of the title track.
Later on, we have up-front French spoken word, gentle churning-yet-skeletal industrial beats, and slightly whimsical world music dread of “Das Leben”. And the more straight jazzy bass ‘n’ electro beats of “Les Filles” which as it goes on adds in lightly jiving guitar detail, snippets of surreal female dialogue, and a floating out/ ambient abstract resolve.
On the whole, Transcodex rather brought to mind a slightly more jazzed out, and lullingly abstract take on the type of thing Edward Ka-Spel has been doing over the last decade or so. If that’s your bag you’ll very much enjoy what’s occurring here.