Album Review: Alexandria-Based French Artist Rorik Dupuis' 'Faits de La Même Matière' EP
French-born, Alexandria-based electronic artist Rorik Dupuis surprises us with his take on ambient/electronica; we listen and review.
Another day at the Scene Noise HQ, except it’s not. As we filter through the large amount of content we receive daily, we stumbled across something that is rather peculiar. French artist Rorik Dupuis - who currently resides in Alexandria working as a French teacher - has graced us with some of his latest releases. Two albums that have been released earlier this year, both are an oddball of sounds that sneak up on you, slapping you across the face - especially if you’re an electronic musician - with their near perfect compositions and meticulous attention to detail. The French-born artist spent most of his time between Germany and the Périgord region of France before relocating to Paris to study piano. Later on he started heading towards improv jazz, rock, and electronic music.
Faits de La Même Matière – Made From the Same Material – is Dupuis’ take on nu-jazz, ambient electronica. The artist starts off the EP with SA2, a fantastic piece of breakbeat ambient AKA trip-hop – an intergalactic synth supported by pads and a massive swell of a bass line that is brought in and out of the piece. An effected piano lead pierces through the track, with different variants being used of the same sound, layering in percussion lines and that massive monster of a bass, all following an extremely addictive kick-drum in glorious harmony.
The second track, La Ménagerie Libre, picks up the pace a bit with a more forward beat and bit of brightness that surfaces through the joyful composition of a mallet instrument that is present from the start. Two minutes in and the track breaks into a divide that is carried out with a distinctive rhythm, it’s almost as if the parts are played out live and brought together on a computer rather than the usual full-on digital approach. We have no idea what the artist is using to produce this music; the drum line and the percussions are so sporadic, with off beat notes layered in with the break falling in place even when they don’t, true testament to the masterfulness of the artist's skills.
MW Live is a very short one-and-a-half minute piece of organ dystopia – sad, almost bluesy; it bridges to the fourth track, La Piscine, a keyboard lead accompanied by a broken up kick drum and some repetitive toms. Evolving pads and some very crafty percussion work take this piece into the realms of musical hypnosis – astounding work. Anarchie II, fifth in line, is a great piece of ambient/jazz fusion. Piano and organ play off one another, a very intricate sound scape is layered over parts of the piece adding an immense feeling of intensity to the track. The same sound design is used for Éducation, but instead of the insurrectionary vibe of the previous track, this track - the last on the album - is fielding a whole new experiment. The artist is infusing electronic elements with his hauntingly good pianist capabilities, all delivered on a kick and snare drum pattern. Varying elements are brought in and out in minimalistic fashion. He breaks down the drum line with a frenzy of kicks bringing us closer to a bittersweet ending.
The artist released another album before Faits de La Même Matière, though under a different alias: Kasper Valmé. Espoirs is a six track EP released by Dupuis last march on the french Kontre Kulture, with a 12-track version available for purchase here or a six-track version available on Bandcamp. The album follows the same nu-jazz/ambient style with a more minimal touch.
Follow Rorik Dupuis on Bandcamp here for his full discography.