wed 19/02/2020

CD: Jacques Greene - Dawn Chorus | reviews, news & interviews

CD: Jacques Greene - Dawn Chorus

CD: Jacques Greene - Dawn Chorus

Housey electronic suite from Toronto producer is gently alluring

The sunsets were purple and red and yellow and on fire...

Canadian DJ-producer Philippe Aubin-Dionne – AKA Jacques Greene – has had a successful career in global clubland. One release in particular, his spacey 2011 deconstruction of the song “Deuces” by R&B star Ciara, which he entitled “Another Girl”, created waves in the world of house music. His 2017 album Feel Infinite demonstrated he had vision enough to hold listeners on a longer electronic journey. Dawn Chorus steps forward likeably from that set.

It is an album that’s all about mood, rather than songs, although there are vocals here and there. The lead single, the lazily acidic “Night Service” features serviceable and stoned-sounding MCing from Cadence Weapon, while Canadian singers Ebohni and Rochelle Jordan also make appearances, the latter on the woozy, electro-pulsing, “Let Go”, which comes on like a cross between “Another Girl” and Ben Pearce’s 2012 crossover club hit “What I Might Do”.

These are the exceptions, though. Jacques Greene mostly musters a late night wooziness so that, even when rave whoops crop up, as on “Do It Without You”, it’s head-noddy rather than perspiration-inducing. There are similarities with Jamie xx’s work, although Dawn Chorus is a floatier and more holistic suite than xx’s crunchily more-ish In Colour album. Moby even occasionally springs to mind. Greene has something of his sense of rising euphoria, although not the underlying classicism.

The album closes on “Stars” which, over a chugging railroad-style rhythm, offers a new agey spoken word vocal that dreamily talks of idyllic childhood days climbing trees and picking berries. It is a fitting climatic moment, clanging yet soft focus synth tones eventually overwhelm the words, the piece bubbles off into space, as if the music had been dying to head out there all along. The listener, meanwhile, has either long-dismissed Dawn Chorus as pleasant background music or, alternately, spun off into internal space, ready to start the whole trip again.

Below: Watch a less laid back live version of "Night Service" by Jacques Greene, featuring Cadence Weapon


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