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Eric Chenaux / Commiserations

by thefamilyelan | Print the article

Wednesday 27th MayEricChenaux_1
Fuse Art Space


Eric Chenaux plays with ballads, songs, tunes, improvisations, guitars, voices, electronics, films and very small swinging speakers.

Since 2006, Constellation has been home to Chenaux’s more overtly song- based work. His warm, gliding voice and erudite lyricism, channeled next to an utterly unique guitar technique and a deep immersion in pop, the avant- garde and folk traditions from the obscure to post-modern have made for some absorbing live shows and albums. In 2015 he releases Skullsplitter, where he refines his balladry, juxtaposing a gorgeously pure and open singing against the roiling, changeable atmosphere of the guitars underneath it. When Eric plays guitar he is continually working his concise array of signal-bending devices – volume, wah and freeze pedals – with a remarkable and idiosyncratic fluidity. His voice is the calm center of this stormy micro-climate of bodily kinetics and woozy playing, like a high pressure system, the words ride on clear bright air.


Commiserations are a Leeds-based, decidedly heavy post-punk trio featuring two guitars, drums, and a double dose of unhinged vocals. Pretty darn catchy, and generally a bit warped, in the best possible way.


More on Eric Chenaux:

Eric has songs with deliciously skewed motifs scattered and clustered within them. His tactile lines of audio effects, the mirroring and metaphors in his music and the heartfelt alliance of instrument, lyrical space and melodies create places of psychedelic and reflective refuge. With one ear keen on the classic through line and another bent on twisting any sort of sobriety out of a tune, Eric is a lyrical, playful yet methodical guitar player and songwriter. He happily pulls into clubs to deliver from his rich repertoire of song as well create new works via commissions and exploring the sound/art/film prism.

He started up with legendary Toronto punk band Phleg Camp in the early 90s and has tirelessly expanded his techniques in all kinds of music ensembles since. As an guitarist he has performed with Pauline Oliveros, John Oswald, Michael Snow, Brodie West, Han Bennink, Michael Moore, Josephine Foster, Wilbert De Joode, Gareth Davis, Jacob Wren and Norberto Lobo among many.

He composes and performs music for contemporary dance and the cinema as well as collaborating on numerous sound pieces with visual/sound artist Marla Hlady.

“Chenaux’s voice expands haunting, jazz-tuned melodies from the inside. His voice is weightless, haunting, alighting on words and phrases without putting pressure on them, then skittering up an octave or so for spectral climaxes.” – Dusted Magazine

“This is truly bizarre & very welcome music. Its off-the-wall attitude doesn’t detract from the ever present warmth & peculiar beauty. Chock full of collapsing, freeform deranged folk, cracked alt country, fractured earthy soul .” – Norman Records

“He can seamlessly veer from fragile and lilting to wonderfully rich and expressive in the space of a single song” – The Skinny

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