Franco-Swiss composer François J. Bonnet, aka Kassel Jaeger, returns to Shelter Press with his new solo album, Shifted in Dreams. Over the years, Bonnet has been working closely with Shelter Press on different projects, whether as a musician (Zauberberg, Swamps / Things), a theorist (The Music To Come) or as Director of parisian institution INA GRM (SPECTRES, Recollection GRM, Portraits GRM). The common axis of all these actions is the exploration of the deep causes of music, its own potential and its possible appearances.
Shifted in Dreams is a continuation of such research but takes a somewhat deviated path. If we use the metaphor of music as a paradoxical mountain — an unreachable “Mont Analogue”, then this record tries to opens up a way that at first seems simpler and marked out by the distinct presence of familiar harmonic and temporal elements. This path, however, is simple only in appearance, for soon it becomes less clear: its contours get blurred, drowned in the mist. Silhouettes form in the distance, like uncertain shadows. We grope our way forward, in this infra-sensitive thickness of the world outside of signs. The recognized markers disappear, giving way, at best, to reminiscences, but increasingly making way to qualities, occurrences, events. We leave the known world of musical codes to join that of sound apparitions, their memorial imprints and the impressions they produce.
Following a compositional approach stemming from the musique concrète tradition, without adopting a structuralist aesthetic, Shifted in Dreams explores a wide range of instruments and techniques, going seamlessly from instrumental improvisation to field recording, via micro-editing and asynchronous looping. Mixing the electronic waves of an ARP 2500 synthesizer with the acoustic drones of a positive organ, articulating guitar layers with resonances of a Cristal Baschet, bringing together recordings of slamming windows and sounds produced by complex modular synthesis patches, among other things, Bonnet offers a rich and generous palette of sounds, inviting a constantly renewed sonic investigation.
Shifted in Dreams, despite its title, is not a dreamlike record. The dream here does not designate the symbolical space of interpretation and reinterpretation of reality through cultural patterns. It designates the intermediate, blurred and uncertain state where the reality of signs loses its consistency, while, paradoxically, the reality of senses and impressions becomes imperative, obvious. The reality of demons.
Music composed and performed by François J. Bonnet
Artwork by Eléonore Huisse
Mastering by Giuseppe Ielasi
Design by Bartolomé Sanson