There are commitments whose delineations are only defined by a territory. The series initiated in 2016 by Marion Cousin prompts an exploration of the Iberian Peninsula through its enchanted traditions, and creates for to each region a singular collaboration, born from her desires, encounters and friendships.
How many albums will this series include? What forms will they take? Who will her fellow music explorers be? Nothing seems fixed here. This second opus clinches the project in its playground, establishes the birth of a series, and most of all shows the endless freedom and the undeniable pleasure with which those ancient songs are revealed; not completely forgotten but already rare, they appear lively, fruitful and resilient to the test of time.
Marion's voice embarks us and sails away, leaves the islands of Minorca and Majorca, where the plowing and reaping songs mingled with sad romantic epics and Gaspar Claus' cello, in “Jo estava que m'abrasava – Work songs from Minorca and Majorca” (LDFP / Le Saule, 2016), to take us to the Estremadura, a remote region of Spain, documented in his time by Luis Buñuel, who was fascinated by its aridity, its harshness, the poor existence of its residents, the isolation of its villages.
The film was made in 1933 and no sound was recorded on-site. However, these men, these women, these children carry these songs, it is almost perceptible on their faces. And these songs are certainly the same as these romances presented here by Marion Cousin and Kaumwald.
Kaumwald is founded by Ernest Bergez and Clement Vercelletto, who, together, also form two third of the trio Orgue Agnès. From there, if we dig a little, we can see appear a large family of musicians who like to break away from genres and create sounds with today's instruments as if they had been found in antiques stores. Ernest is also Sourdure, a solo project unearthing French folk songs, with his violin, his voice, and a few machines making coarse sounds in ways only he knows the secret.
The duo adorns the songs chosen by Marion with an organic electricity, floating through the letters, seeping in the syllables, and reveals the flawed groove of these ritornellos that seem to have never stopped repeating themselves. The trio emerging here offers eight titles, which were arranged in an old barn where almost-closed electrical circuits were set up. Beside the impregnation and transformation of the songs, for a rendering both strange and sharp, these electrical circuits also contributed to the rhythmic, harmonic and textural foundations for this successful attempt of transmission of texts and melodies borrowed from the collective memory, from the people, often rural, who like to tell stories and provide an expanded spectrum to our existences.