Through Witxes, Maxime Vavasseur crashes popular music into singular music since 2010. Based in the Rhône-Alpes region (France), his project finds its way in the balance between improvisation, sound research and composition. Focus is laid on creating abstract yet often tonal pieces, blurring lines between acoustic and electronic sources, playing with various definitions of sound and inviting other artists to join the recording process. Witxes live performances usually offer a much more physical and hypnotic take on the studio works by building walls of sound then focusing on the cracks and interstices.
Since its inception, the project has released two albums, Sorcery/Geography (2012) and A Fabric of Beliefs (2013) – both mastered by Australian sound artist Lawrence English – as well as a couple EPs. At the end of 2014, a new electronic 20-min piece (‘Pisces Analogue’) was released on a split with Dale Cooper Quartet & the Dictaphones. A third full length recording, called Orients, will be released in June through Consouling Sounds (CD on June 1st and LP on June 22nd; pre-order both here).
Below we’re streaming the first single ‘Rogues’. Maxime comments: “What I could say about ‘Rogues’ is that it’s the oldest track on the record, it was born out of an introduction piece I was performing on my 2014 euro tour with the great Dale Cooper Quartet. It went through various incarnations, before being finalised very late in the mixing process. The original theme is now buried deep below the layers of sound, making a few appearances in waves. ‘Rogues’ is probably the most personal piece on this record, even though it seems odd to say so as there are no lyrics, but its meaning is very specific to me and not so easy to share. But let’s say it deals with mass manipulation, global anaesthesia, and forced reactions to manufactured terror. There is a specific day in my life, in January 2015, where all these things I mentioned made me feel completely isolated from society, both literally and figuratively. The field recordings in that track were recorded on that day and sort of guided the rest of the composition. Aesthetically, it might not be the darkest track on Orients, but for me and for the narrative of the record, it definitely is.”