Enregistré LIVE - Genticorum
Le Productions du Moulin
I get the rationale behind the ‘LIVE’ concert recording. I also believe that any success at capturing that elusive, mystical ‘energy’ artists are eager to bottle in the context of a LIVE audio recording (video is something different) comes at the expense of fidelity. Digital recording advances have improved the product greatly, but for audiophiles, there is as yet no substitute for the clarity, precision and sound design of a studio recording. The studio is purely a creative environment optimized for the purpose of recording. It stands, therefore, that it is the best medium through which artists may realize their art, and the studio recording is the best way for the listener to audition it. Nevertheless, when the musical ensemble is such as the Quebec traditional trio, Genticorum (pronounced ‘Jawn-ti-core-um’); renowned for its onstage acuity, polished through dozens of international tours, and already has four excellent studio recordings under its belt, there are plenty of good reasons to attempt to capture that essence and save it. ‘Enregistré LIVE’ or ‘Recorded LIVE’, is the trio’s 5th album and returns them to where it all began in the historic Quebec township of Farnham. The recording took place over two nights at the town hall, just a country mile from where multi-instrumentalist Alexandre De Grosbois-Garand, violinist and podorhythmiest, Pascal Gemme and guitarist, Yann Falquet grew up. In this case, when the arrangements consist of only three acoustic instruments at once, it doesn’t really matter to the listener whether the venue is a rustic town hall or Carnegie Hall, the recording by Louis-Simon Hétu is transparent and pristine. What will shock the listener is the fact that no additional musicians were involved; therein lays the magic of Genticorum. Their playing may be best described as ‘tantric’; a celebratory explosion of mind and body so thoroughly interconnected through composition and performance. Simply put, the acoustic trio produces an astonishing wall of sound, that starts diminutively and crescendos to a big finish. The 11 tracks are beautifully balanced between instrumental and vocal selections that dig deep into Genticorum’s Quebecois heritage; foot-pounding jigs and reels meet chansons à repondre (the indicative Quebecois call and response singing), meets the complex three-part harmonies of the region’s balladeering. Another, less obvious reason for the making of Enregistré LIVE? It finally gave the much in-demand global vagabonds the opportunity to perform at home before a very appreciative crowd of old friends and extended family. Pascal Geme quipped, “My father had never seen me play on stage before that night.” Genticorum does him proud on Enregistré LIVE.