AGUA music 2022
So, what happened during this surprising year we just went through? For Quentin Dujardin, 2020 will certainly turn out to have been the busiest year of his eventful career. More than a journey, it has been a solo experience carried out at the frontier of our freedom to continually remain creative and alive.
Today, he once again makes his indelible mark on the guitar world. He tells us about this period, both strange and accompanied by a terribly noisy playlist of trash guitar and shrieking vocals. A year that, in the end, was very inspiring in his fight against the silence imposed on artists.
Returning to the music, let’s say at the outset that it is the fulfillment of one of his childhood dreams to bring together two big names: Manu Katché and Nicolas Fiszman.
Quentin collaborated with them previously, notably on the albums Catharsis with Katché (2016) and Veloma with Fiszman (2007). This new track list includes Blues for M&N, tailor-made for this unstoppable rhythm section so clear in its approach to groove.
Quentin Dujardin began listening to them at a young age and is inspired by the solidity of their playing – like an open-sesame to music itself.
For this new album, the guitarist surrounds himself with his four favorite guitars – nylon, baritone, fretless & acoustic – a wide palette that expands the colors and sound spectrum. In the piece 2020, his electric guitars speak to us with a loud cry about the landscapes in his native region of Condroz. In this vast space, where leisure for rambling reigns (La balade de Nils), he finds the fountains of his childhood (Val de Gore).
Everyone knows the artist for both his highly crafted melodies (Michèle & Philippe) and his fluid improvisation (Aimé). He couldn’t resist sharing these different realms with his partner Didier Laloy, always ready to dive right in. The mad, windy energy of his accordion, in perfect harmony with the guitar strings, heralds the cyclone over Madagascar. Together they take the occasion to revisit Baroque, with sorrow issuing straight from the bow of cellist Adrien Tyberghein. Also Avril in a live studio version that amplifies this sumptuous month. We should also note the presence of the American, Doron David Sherwin and his cornetto. The international artist is highly appreciated for both his delicate, melodic interventions and the imagination he brings to the world of baroque music today (Arpeggiata).
Quentin Dujardin quietly pursues his path, remaining resolute in sound and emotion. It is this combination that moves his audiences, an approach he has maintained for almost 30 years sprinting across national and international stages. In 2005 Toots Thielemans saw in him “an extraordinary revelation”, a bottomless well of finesse: in composition, touch and sensitivity. Along the way, the guitarist proved himself fascinating on his album Distances, in collaboration with the American producer Lee Townsend (Bill Frisell, Pat Metheny). He also performed live or in the studio with Bijan Chemirani, Olivier Ker Ourio, Richard Bona, Matthieu Saglio, Mahsa Vahdat and Ivan Paduart, to name a few.
Since February 14, 2021, when his live Ave Maria performance was banned by the authorities(*), the artist has become an icon of our freedom of expression. Taking legal action against the improper state of emergency imposed on the art world, he aims to win his case against the government. Continuing to perform during lockdown, Quentin Dujardin is combining his unclassifiable work with that of a committed citizen. The impact is universal.
(*)The Belgian government began permitting religious gatherings of up to 15 people, while still prohibiting live cultural events. Protesting this double standard, Quentin Dujardin gave a public performance, titled Ave Maria, on a Sunday in a local church. He was arrested after five minutes.
| PRESS QUOTES |
« An album that is both deep, powerful, musical and on edge! A universe of great beauty, which flirts between minimalism and virtuosity. To discover! » – Manu Katché
« A very well crafted album, as always, representative of the singular universe of Dujardin all in delicacy, reverie and sensual melodies. » – Jazz Magazine (FR)
« Through its climates and landscapes, this album is like a groundswell of freedom, with the desire to share strong melodies. 2020 is a manifesto, not a mass. » – Jazz News (FR)
“An album marked by furious desires for breaths of fresh air, the velvet of nylon and the winds of the stormy diatonic accordion. » – Guitarist Acoustic (FR)
“There are guitarists who fill and guitarists who ventilate. Quentin Dujardin belongs to the second category. » – Telerama (FR)
« Unclassified artist, amazingly original. » – Jazz Rhône-Alpes (FR)
« Quentin Dujardin shows how he is one of the best to synthesize jazz and world music. » – Jazz radio (FR)
« The perfect mix between pure soundscape and beautiful melodies. A diamond in the rough! » – Le Soir (BE)
« Delicate landscapes that tell us about his life and that of others. » – Jazz’Halo (BE)
« An album that sounds like a liberation. » – Larsen (BE)
« A record that feels good » – France info (FR)
« A sound that is both crystalline & vaporous. A vintage and modern album » – Art District Radio (FR)