Véronique Vilhet and Dominique Grimaud are part, as
indicated in the English Wire magazine, of the « veterans
of French underground » who begun their musical activities
in the counter-culture movement launched after May-68. Their
adventures and misadventures drove them from the Festival
of Avignon to Caracas, from Baalbek festival to the Music
Building of New York, as well as in charts of the New Musical
Express. Both of them followed the tracks of side roads of
auto-production, even if they have also been considered by
official labels in Chicago and Barclay in France.
After four decades, they still go ahead; the duet now often
plays outside the official channels, in self-directed places,
squats and new-generation of record shops.
InPolySons already invited in the past Véronique Vilhet
or Dominique Grimaud: first for Véronique with the re-issue
of the songs of Johnny B Crotte, and second for Dominique with two
solo and duet (with Pierre Bastien) albums (Rag-Time and
Rag-Time vol 2).
Their new album has for concept Islands. In 2013, Denis
Tagu gave them a present: Atlas of Remote Islands by Judith
Schalansky (Penguin Books, 2010) translated in french (Arthaud,
Flammarion 2010). Very keen of this topic, they proposed to use
this book as a base for composing music and an album. As InPolySons
found the idea pretty good, Véronique and Dominique selected
within this atlas, as well as in folk and scientific books, different
islands that all have specific histories, sometimes tragic, sometimes
funny, and always unexpected. Recording was performed without synthesizers
(except a Synthi AKS for simulation of wave sound). The drums and
Fender Stratocaster guitars are the main used instruments, with
the sake for open unusual chords, such as those by Nick Drake, Peter
Finger or Michael Hedges. For some musical atmospheres, some additional
instruments have been added: spinet, balafo, National steel guitar,
alto and baryton saxophones, mouth harp At the end, 12 pieces
that correspond to 12 real or imaginary islands, with 12 outlines
and fates turns by turns knocked-up, rusty, torn to shreds, disturbing,
wild, uneven, pushed, tormented, comical, unusual, charming, colourful...
a nice discovery.
Art work: Dominique Julien, Agnès Méreau et Dominique
Lay out: Julien Louvet
Mastering: Patrick Muller