suggestioni musicali a cura di raffaello russo
Both born in the shadow of the Vercors Mountains (France) deep inside the Drôme, Béatrice Morel Journel and Josselin Varengo have shared many musical adventures together over the years. Besides playing solo under the pseudonym Baby B, Beatrice has shared the stage with Josselin in Gloria and Tara King Th. Josselin has played drums for bands like Slow Joe & The Ginger Accident, Deborah Kant and Aquaserge.
Borrowing the name of the highest peak in the Vercors, the pair founded Grand Veymont in 2016. The duo formed the band to express the importance of territories – the territory where we’re born, the one in which we live, the ones we leave behind and the ones we strive to reach. The mythical Grand Veymont – an echo, a mountain to climb. Inspired by the landscape of the Vercors where their grandfathers fought in the WWII resistance, the scenery conjures an imaginary playground in which the musicians paint their intimate, personal cartographies.
Overstepping formal structures, obligations, the two freely explore their aspirations and desires through their music. They invent a free-flowing, floating style of composition and their first recordings were met with great enthusiasm. Born from skillful musicianship and improvisations, Grand Veymont is a simple concept at heart, peppered with surprises: vintage organs, a minimalist drumkit, a rhythm box, a flute and two voices. With their first, self-produced EP released in Autumn 2016, their new record (to be released on February 16th 2018 by Objet Disque) is named “Route du Vertige” (Vertigo Road). Over the course of four long-running songs, the music takes us through vivid foregrounds towards distant horizons and back again in a landscape where everything – from the hazy backdrops to the intricate details – is fascinating. To follow Grand Veymont is to leave behind your home turf and travel elsewhere; to a place where time unravels and twists, where patterns entangle and untangle themselves, melodies overlap and superimpose, a place where everything rocks to and fro.
Parts of their music could be likened to the experimental aspects of Stereolab, or perhaps serialist music corrupted by the pantheon of pop and ethereal, abstract atmospheres, or maybe what Krautrock would sound like if the Vercors were a feature on the map of contemporary music… So no formulaic rock here – just songs sung in French deeply veined with moods, desires and the occasional lightning strike.