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New summits to be explored by musical expedition: Sommet climbs Mount Everest in 7 songs…
Funny how the most incredible things can be achieved in a Paris studio. French duet Sommet just managed to recreate the eerie feelings of a whole alpine adventure with their electronic sounds.
Allez, let’s be overly enthusiast about this outstanding achievement, and let’s directly start with an outrageous comparison: It would be possible to say that such an amazing descriptive music hasn’t been composed since Antonio Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. And that was in 1725. In their short yet intense album “I”, Sommet managed to convey, and express, all the noises and the feelings of a genuine mountain expedition, without using one word. The activity buzz in the Base Camp, the noise of the helicopter rotor, the gust of blizzards, the crisp sound of snow, the breathtaking feeling of walking over a sharp crest of ice, or a the mere emotion of contemplating a sunrise above a pristine snow valley, and these are only example of what you can feel thanks to their music.
In fact, one can feel the mountain even before getting all the hints; it’s true that the songs names (Western CWN, Khumbu Icefall or Hillary Step) make it really clear that we are being taken to the top of the world’s highest mount, the mythical Everest. But music here speaks alone. The description is magical, and opens our ears like sound eyes in different frozen landscapes, that strike us with awe as we walk, exhausted, in a haunting world. A break for a col, a slower beat for our missing oxygen, a sudden stop for a new high valley… Not having personally conquered Mount Everest is not a problem here, as the adventure remains intact, virgin, pure. You might guess the Yeti somewhere, hear the caterpillars of a snow patrol, discover ancient Kaddath beyond some hallucinated mountains, maybe even reach the lush and plentiful Shangri-la, right when you thought your strengths were leaving you.
There is not too much information on the two Parisians who undertook first this fantastic journey. Sommet is mostly Clément Bonnet and Sébastien Rosat, who decided to illustrate the heights using a sharp electronic music, with a very interesting influence from Krautrock in general, and Kraftwerk in particular. In their opening piece, Base Camp, that connection is definitely obvious, and will walk with us like a sherpa until the top of our journey. These sounds mixed by Jérôme Caron lift us through all the different phases of the ascension, each time offering a new emotion.
This is by essence the kind of work that will give its legitimacy to electronica as one of the major movement in musical History. But before fame and posterity wake up and do their job -and they might be helped by the selection of Base Camp as the soundtrack of a Renault car commercial-, we can right now pack up our backpacks and start dreaming of getting to that legendary summit….
To start, let’s just meet at Base Camp…: Sommet – Base Camp