Blast is the newest project involving French pianist Anne Quillier, who seems to be unable to do anything bad, as our previous reviews of Watchdog, Asylon Terra, and her own sextet can attest. This new moniker is basically the aforementioned Watchdog duo with Pierre Horckmans with an added drummer: Guillaume Bertrand. Percussions were one thing I would have liked to hear on Watchdog’s album, so this should be perfect!
On Rhodes and Moogs, Anne’s parts are rhythmically interesting and lay down the complex harmonic framework of the compositions, mostly hers and Guillaume’s. Sometimes distorted, too, the keyboards really do a lot to craft a dense atmosphere that permeates through the entire record, which hits an uncanny middle ground between contemplative and funky. It’s no surprise that both the clarinet and the percussions are also brilliant in their conception and execution, being as versatile and omnipresent as required for Drifting to be the achievement it is (and that’s quite a lot!) For the big fifty minutes it lasts, the album never fails to renew itself, present something new to the listener, or approach a concept from a different angle to keep things fresh and
I don’t know if the next project will be under a brand new name, once again, but I’ll keep an eye for these musicians. For this, the excellent Pince-Oreilles label will surely prove helpful. In the meantime, be sure to listen to this one and the other related albums!