Mha — 11:46 - 09:01

Yet another hot contender for the title of most gorgeous 3’’ disc of the year. This untitled EP comes in an oblong heavy paper pack with a front cover made of transparent foil depicting a summerly still life at the border of a lake. The music contained inside is a perfect reflection of that mood: Sweet, dreamy and delicate, this is a moment of quiet bliss turned sound.
On one hand, we could leave it at that and end the review right here. Why waste so many words, when all you need to know is embedded in the first paragraph? Then again, there is so much more to this disc than just your typical metaphors of nature that it would seem a crime ignoring the compositional depth involved. “mha” is an organic acoustic statement, its two untitled tracks rotating around the sounds of guitars, bass, glockenspiel and various field recordings as well as the treated reverberations of their gentle aftermath. In the opening minutes of the first piece, this adds up to various microdrones, hushed little motives, lovingly struck chords and long, sustained tones forming a longing melodic arch. This is not where it ends, however, as the work suddenly sheds its glistening surface, sinking into a sombre passage and placing all of its constituent elements in a new light: What formerly seemed charming and endearing now comes across as melancholic and filled with sorrow. Deep bass notes sigh mournfully and the tracks loops itself into a wishful dream. Similarly, the second track opens with embracing candyfloss clouds, before opening up the scars and tearing the music down into its deformed mirror image. In stark contrast to many other drone offerings, mha plays with tonal variations much more, using sudden root note changes for seemless mood swings.
The only thing we could possibly complain about is time: At a mere twenty minutes, this haze is over sooner than anyone could possibly wish for. On the aposiopese label site, however, there is a yet another untitled release by this mysterious project available for free download. and a quick listen has already suggested that there is more of where this one came from. Only lacking the beautiful packaging, of cours
e Bandcamp


Mha est le projet solo de l’un des guitaristes de Fago Sepia, groupe post-rock également signé sur le jeune label rennais Aposiopèse. Il s’agit là d’un deuxième EP pour l’artiste qui a déjà produit un trois titres aujourd’hui épuisé mais entièrement téléchargeable sur le site du label.
Si mha reste dans une veine ambient, il semble avec ce CD-R 3" mettre un peu de côté ses expérimentations et traitements électroniques pour laisser son instrument de prédilection, la guitare, s’exprimer plus librement. 11:46 débute par des field recordings, puis les notes de guitare limpides prennent le relais, légèrement traitées pour apporter quelques syncopes, quelques nappes linéaires apparaissent, se superposent, inquiétantes, un objet semble tomber, des bruitages viennent ajouter à l’aspect cinématographique de cette musique, sur une guitare répétitive. On est alors proche d’un post-rock ambient à la Pan American.
09:01 est peut-être plus complexe dans sa composition. L’électronique y tient une place importante au niveau du traitement sonore, mais le rendu est quasi orchestral. Superposition, allées et venues de nappes contrastées pour un résultat à la fois sombre et éclatant.
Ce petit bijou limité à 100 exemplaires se trouve dans un joli écrin, pochette plastique, impression couleur sur papier calque, une photo mystérieuse qui colle parfaitement à cette musique.


Le jeune label aposiopèse fait paraître un ep au format mini-cd signé james mha, qui est en fait le projet solo d'un des guitaristes du groupe post-rock fago sepia, que l'on retrouve également sur ce petit label basé en Loire-Atlantique.
Dans un style plus calme que celui de sa formation initiale, le garçon propose un ep sur lequel on découvre 2 titres respectivement de 11 et 9 minutes qui évoquent ici plus un post-rock lent, clair, lumineux et planant, un peu à la manière de ce que peuvent faire des groupes comme Labradford, PanAmerican ou One mile North, à savoir une musique constituée de drones, de field recordings, de nappes de synthés et de longs passages de guitares, le tout arrangé au laptop.
Assez différent des trois mp3 de james mha proposés sur le site du label, ce ep 2 titres se révèle plus ouvert, moins expérimental et finalement très beau, très agréable à écouter. Une belle découverte.

Onde fixe




Mha (james.mha aka Florian Jamelot, guitarist in French band Fago.Sepia) alchemizes processed sounds of guitar, bass, glockenspiel, and field recordings into two delicately woven soundscapes on a twenty-one-minute, three-inch CD release (100 copies produced).
Crystalline organ tones shimmer throughout the first piece, giving it a church-like air, followed by bright glockenspiel tinkling and flowing shudders of electric guitar, while the equally engrossing second is more tranquil. In the opening section, ambient tones slowly drift like ghosts through a deserted mansion until guitars and bass appear, first electrifying the sound and then bolstering dramatically its portentous symphonic ambiance until it resembles a late-twentieth classical setting of Ligeti-like character.


A beautiful aquatic photograph adorns the cover of a nice 3-inch CD by a gentleman from France, whose name is James (I don’t know if Mha is his real surname, but this is not important) and who used guitar, bass, glockenspiel, microphone, minidisc and field recordings to conceive two tracks – titled exactly as you see, with just their duration – that keep a pleasant company over the course of 20 minutes, especially at low level in the early hours of the morning.
The first takes its shape from unidentified voices to remain suspended mid-air with gentle chords and volume swells, while the second introduces a few additional harmonic movements, most notably within the realms of string-ish gradations that contribute to change perspectives a little bit, although leaving the general character of the music quite similar to the rest of the disc.
Think about a mix of certain sides of Eno’s more melodic materials and, for those who know him, Hypnos label’s guitarist David Tollefson, the whole covered with a charming simplicity giving this artifact a graceful warmth which is much appreciated from this observation point.

Touching extremes


This is the solo project of James.MHA who plays guitar, bass, glockenspiel, microphone, md, fields recordings and also member of Fago.Sepia. This mini-CD was composed by Florian Jamelot and recorded during winter 2004 and mixed early in 2005 by Mathieu Trouvé.
This mini-CD is a limited edition of 100 CD-R’s released on the French Clisson based Aposiopèse imprint and comprise two tracks of ambient washes, trembling guitars and some concrete sounds like a door closing quite hard. The music in the first track [untitled] is plentiful of melodic guitar chords, a nostalgic violin and an ambience keyboard line. It sounds like a live recording. The second track it has some click textures, guitar drones and their strings sounds like an orchestra.
This is an interesting piece of music so I’m looking forward for the next release of this French artist.

Este es el proyecto en solitario de James.MHA quien toca la guitarra, bajo, lira, micrófono, md y registros de campo y también es miembro de Fago.Sepia. Este mini-CD fue compuesto por Florian Jamelot y grabado durante el invierno de 2004 y mezclado a principios de 2005 por Mathieu Trouvé.
Este mini-CD es una edición numerada de 100 copias y que se editó por el sello francés Aposiopèse que tiene su base en Clisson y comprende dos temas de ambient, guitarras cristalinas y algunos sonidos concretos como el cerrado de puertas. La música en el primer tema [sin título] está lleno de acordes de guitarra melódicos, un nostálgico violín y una línea de teclado ambiental. Suena como si fuera grabado en vivo. El segundo tema posee algunas texturas de clicks, drones de guitarra y sus cuerdas suenan como si fueran una orquesta.
Interesante muestra, por lo quedo atento a una próxima entrega de este músico francés.