Valentin Laborde – the man behind Camecrude, a French experimental music project – sounds as though he’s captured and transformed into sound some of the strangeness of life on his late 2018 release Enclave I, out now via Cioran Records. It feels important though to establish just how dynamic the work feels. The aforementioned sentiment doesn’t shine through via just some sort of gimmick. No – the shape of the music itself captures this strangeness with an ability that isn’t often found. Aiming to capture bizarre imaginative soundscapes remains a lofty undertaking to begin with.
Laborde, though, feels like he’s really scored through his apparent willingness to let the music do the talking and even guide him as the scribe behind it all. Although the experimental aspect of his work definitely sticks out, it’s not as though he’s produced something that’s in-your-face or obnoxious. It feels more like the soundtrack to a movie – but even that might be a bit too simplifying.
At the core of his music rests the hurdy gurdy, according to available information, which is a complex stringed instrument. The music isn’t acoustic, though, and throughout the work textures from who on earth knows where pop up. The nature of these sounds helps establish the work’s tone as much as the way they’re combined. The experimentation is built into the very nature of the music itself, which adds to its power.
Tying the strange electronics and beyond together, there is a narrative sense, but it’s very open ended. There’s an unease to the textural experimentation at times that feels reminiscent of horror movies, but that doesn’t capture the work’s full breadth. It just feels like it sits in a category all its own, like a movie that treads lines between emotion, action, unease driven horror and beyond.
The sounds adhere not to each other so much as they jump out at the world around them, including and enveloping the listener. Pushing play feels somewhat like opening Pandora’s Box. There remain an infinite number of possibilities of what comes next – it’s just up to the listener to follow the sound to a new destination.
Listen below via Bandcamp