Monday, February 22, 2010
Jean Humenry and a bunch of session musicians cut a number of 7" library records on the French label Auvidis in 1977. Auvidis LPs generally offer an array of boring, unaccompanied "sound effects" -- birds chirping, cars honking, audiences applauding, stuff like that. But the Humenry 7"s are really something to behold. These are the sounds of the nature documentaries of your youth. Humenry was a cheezy Aznavour-esque singer, from what I can gather, but here he opts for a very soothing proggy instrumental sound, with primitive synths, gently strummed acoustic guitars, some drum machine pitter patter, and superimposed field recordings of various seafront sounds: waves lapping up against the shore, children playing on the beach, a boat docking. The whole thing was probably composed and recorded over the course of an afternoon. For the most part the music has a very gentle way with you, except for two rather evil John Carpenter-style numbers towards the end. And then it's all over much too quickly. There's something about the brightly colored stock sleeve that's really appealing as well. I'll be posting some of Humenry's other Auvidis 7"s soon.
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