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vs_price - live au bar l'océan / Musicim 022 / musiques immédiates / 2009

Débuté dans un froissement électronique et des voix d’enfants, le live au bar l’Océan de vs_price se présente comme une belle promesse d’ouverture musicale. Une promesse largement tenue si l’on en juge par la richesse de cet enregistrement. Oscillant de l’ électro parcimonieuse à la musique contemporaine, le mélomane toulousain tisse d’habiles passerelles entre bidouillages à la métrique impeccable (il pleut, no question) et brouillages orageux et magnétiques (no answer).
Comme des humeurs changeantes, les pistes au nombre de huit se succèdent, tantôt réchauffées par des sons organiques (guitare, sitar), tantôt refroidies par les tintinnabulements profonds d’un piano. On pense alors brièvement à David Grubbs (notamment sur trottoir B), voir aux minimalistes américains; on pense également à Brian Eno et Harold Budd (sur le morceau letterbox) ainsi qu’ à certains éléments récents de la scène électronique anglaise (Third eye fundation, Boards of canada…)
Si Vs_price ne se perd pas véritablement dans les eaux territoriales de l’ambient, il croise cependant parfois à proximité, ne laissant jamais le rythme envahir totalement ses compositions. Une navigation virtuose entre anticyclones et dépressions.
Autant de perturbations sonores subtiles que vous aurez le plaisir auditif de retrouver en plein coeur du bar l’Océan.

vs_price - SONGS06.TXT / ecd28:07 / expanding records / 2007

Impossible de ne pas sourire, voire franchement se marrer, à l'écoute de l'intro de songs06.txt, second effort du Toulousain Vincent Papon pour le compte d'Expanding Records, le premier en cinq ans. Reflet de ce disque généreux (qui clouera le bec à tous les rancuniers pour qui l'electronica tourne en rond), une petite voix mutine nous invite à chanter avec elle, nous la suivons plus que volontiers. Là où tant d'autres (Porn Sword Tobacco, Principles of Geometry) se jouent en imitateurs mal intentionnés des Boards of Canada et de Benge (patron d'Expanding, pour rappel), l'approche - chaleureuse et cotonneuse - de Vs_Price fait toute la différence. A l'image du magnifique "Neuf" qui prouve que Papon apporte quelque chose de neuf à un genre trop souvent compassé, les dix titres, enregistrés à l'été 2006 entre Toulouse et Mimizan, effleurent de leurs contours épars le réconfort moite des soirées estivales. Tout en n'hésitant pas à ponctionner ses compositions d'une touche juvénile - il faudrait écrire jouvencelle - d'une surprenante acuité, Vs_Price apporte le réconfort solaire de l'été et le repos salvateur de l'hiver. Et son art de l'ambivalence digitalisée mérite notre respect, sinon notre entière admiration.

Fabrice Vanoverberg

Cinq ans d’absence discographique.... Cinq ans (ou presque) qu’on n’avait entendu sur disque l’artiste electro Vs_Price. Cinq ans c’est long surtout pour ceux qui avaient goûté goûlument au premier (et très réussi) disque de l’artiste : Minette. C’était donc avec impatience que l’on attendait ce second essai tout à la fois curieux et excités à l’idée de fouler une nouvelle fois le passionnant univers musical du toulousain.

Sans pour autant changer de style, ni de cap, ce second album, Songs06.txt., sonne comme l’album de maturité. En procédant par une épuration de la rythmique et une mise en avant plus soutenue des mélodies, Vs_Price signe un disque moins prolifique que son précèdent opus mais plus condensé faisant la part belle aux ambiances éclairées. C’est d’ailleurs là que réside la grande nouveauté de cet album, dans ces plages comme Fucking Phone ou Neuf où l’on croise le fantôme mélodique de Boards Of Canada sans pour autant tomber dans le confort du simple copier/coller. Car si Songs06.txt. fait ouvertement référence à l’enfance et à ses sonorités (Petits Joujous, Joujou) Vs_Price n’en délaisse pas pour autant ses rythmiques alambiquées et ses factures sonores bien senties comme l’attestent Grains ou Musicman.

Au final Songs06.txt. est un excellent album, un de ceux qui nous font dire que l’electronica, contrairement à ceux que l’on veut nous faire croire, n’est pas morte et qu’elle a encore de beaux jours devant elle.

Songs06.txt is up for immediate release (AUG 2007) and it is the French recording artist Vs_price return to the Expanding label. After his much talked about album debut on the same label in 2002 (wow, time does really fly when you’re having oh so much fun). Songs06.txt (an impossible title for an album, but never mind that) contains 10 collage-like tracks and they all have a strong work-in-progress feeling to them. And I for one am fully prepared to believe that their origin is supposedly mainly from various live performances made during the past years. This is also in my mind reflected onto the album itself and that is one of the reasons it displays several musical directions at once from the acoustic to the quite energetic and electronic. Where track number eight entitled Musicman is an example of the latter with its high paced beats and looped melody fused with a touch of glitch, completely contrasting the forerunners it is an interesting track. I can’t help but wondering if maybe Songs06.txt is the perfect testament to the breakwater that can be heard so clearly within the narrow field of electronic music movement dealt with here and where the "victorious" path is surprising or in any case disappointing. Let the machines, be machines... that aside, let it be said that Vs_price’s second full-length is far from being generic and that is is most definitely contemporary. The packaging with its classic striking front cover photograph is beautiful and the overall production is executed to perfection. Vs_price and Expanding line-up the 28th release and do so with grace.

Bell 03 –

More wonderfully crafted electronica from those rather nice people at the Expanding blip-ville HQ.

For his second full length vs._price - better known to acquaintances as Touluse based multi instrumentalist Vincent Papon sumptuously draws upon an array of softly silken minimalist glitch styled arrangements, predominantly scored by in classically instructed piano hand he imparts daintily crafted after dark lullaby-esque treatments and twinkling starry eyed signatures that are shyly romantic and teasingly playful.

Comprising of 10 pocket concertos, ’songs06.txt’ provides for a lilting suite of dozing delicatessence that shimmers, shivers and serenades sweetly in the overlapping voids where the frosty formations of d_radio’s more dusty evensongs meet the igloo pop refinement of ISAN.

The spectral beauty that alludes to the shy eyed ’26_01’ with its Brontean canter entwines deliciously with ’neuf’ forming an irresistible eloping bond of peek-a-boo snow globe melodies that whirr and crackle delicately weaving ethereal moon lit montages that dinkily ebb and flow like glacial lunar tides. Just on title alone ’fucking phone’ appeals to our innate sense of humour being that we hate with a passion Alexander Bell’s greatest invention. This little snow bound nugget with its jittering pops and crackles - sounds like John Cleese doing one his ministry of funny walks routines in an ice bound subterranean cavern is one way of describing it another is to simply remark on its beautifully bleak allure which to these ears sounds like Ex Post Facto’s ’Oceanic Explorer’ being remodelled by John Carpenter with a side serving of Harold Budd thrown in for good measure.

Elsewhere ’codes de stars’ here cast in its Expanding Mix alter ego breaks momentarily from the serene glazing abound throughout the album, a multi textured gem that appears to terra form before your very ears with each of the attending parts seemingly slightly out of key with their counterparts - think ‘Movement’ era New Order stuck in a groove with an army of nanobots supplied by Swimmer One impishly fired up on high grade lubricants attired with drum kits. ‘Grains’ with its fractured rustic dialects and hiccupping cavernous braiding is quite a cute honey and could easily pass for early career Tunng though on this occasion sounding like they’ve been bedevilled by an army of crack nanobots (them again) armed with chattering typewriters. The whole set is superbly wrapped and book-ended by ‘petite joujous’ pays respectful nods to the late Grandfather of electronic pop - Raymond Scott and cleverly fuses his lulling test card sounds from the nursery ‘Soothing sounds for Baby’ era work with his late 30’s ‘Powerhouse’ mindset.

Scrumptious in a word.


vs_price / evs7:04 / expanding records / 2005

Le français Vs_Price, dont le premier album pour Expanding commence à remonter (2003), se montre bien plus rentre-dedans qu’Holkham avec ses beats saturés et incisifs ainsi que ses gimmicks et autres trucks robotiques, additionnés de quelques notes synthétiques. Après un break fait de sons abrasifs et comme étouffés Birthday 026 se clôt de manière unusuelle. Entiché d’une certaine poésie derrière son univers post-industriel Autechrien, Vs_Price évoque RandomNumber. En face B il laisse une berceuse douce se faire prendre en chasse par un tempo marqué et bien d’autres phénomènes mécaniques, et cette fois encore cela prendra fin comme étouffé dans le processeur. Un single virevoltant et singulier, qui nous fait attendre impatiemment les aventures de Vs_Price.
Stéphane -

"Oh yes, VS_Price makes a very welcome and long overdue return to the world of IDM and truly impressive electronic music. The superbly executed ‘Birthday 026’ is Vincent Papon playing around with “squelches", “zaps” and quirky samples of computer games that recall the work of Gimmik or Quinoline Yellow and the SKAM label. Here we find Price not making throwaway cartoon electronica, but a stab at an alternative acid and electro hybrid. ‘Like A Real Song’ is the come down after the startling, acid fried A side and finds Papon in a contemplative and refrained environment. The use of synth hardware and slowed hip hop influenced beats resemble the bootleg hip hop / electronica experiments of Ascoltare during his least difficult moods. Perfection never sounded so lush!"

V/A / Klip ! Klap ! Force ! / Wwilko / 2004

Le bouquet final Cordes de stars, offert par le toulousain Vs_price (Expanding Rec.), est une pure merveille : rythmique bancale et discrète, arpège de guitare meurtri, proto-basse en boucle sur une rengaine nostalgique, grésillements et cliquetis fragiles intègrent une composition toute en émotions, lancinante...
factor4 -

vs_price / < calin >minette_ / expanding records / 2003

Ancien guitariste du défunt groupe noise tulliste AnaH, combo proche de la scène Pandemonium (Unsane, Hint, Andy's Car Crash...) ou Total Heaven, Vincent a assez rapidement remis le couvert pour le projet laptop Vs-Price.
Croisé sur la compilation Bip_Hop vol.4 (pas étonnant, du fait que Philippe Petit a monté Bip_Hop après l'aventure Pandemonium) et sur la compilation Expanding v/a - The Condition Of Muzak, c'est sur ce dernier label que sort son premier album. < calin >minette_ offre ainsi à la structure londonienne une rupture abrasive après deux albums superbes mais calmes (Benge puis Vessel). D'AnaH, Vs_Price semble avoir gardé un certain goût pour les textures ambiant assez percutantes (tout de même pas trop hardcore), cette même volonté d'immerger l'auditeur. A cet effet, il joue beaucoup de craquements / perturbations à l'arrière-plan. Parfois, il ajoute à cela des rythmiques plus hip-hop et cela donne les titres les plus accessibles (Bretelle, Outrageous), mais parfois il laisse s'exprimer ses guitares jusqu'à leurs explosions soniques (Hanta) en un déferlement de couches traitées très impressionnantes. Lorsque le calme arrive, il reste menaçant et s'installe par l'intermédiaire d'une multitude de micro pulsations, micro bruits et fréquences qui s'entrecroisent incessamment, excitant l'attention de l'auditeur. Vs_Price crée une musique puissante, régie par sa propre dynamique.
Stéphane -

The alias of a frenchman simply named vincent, vs_price's surreally-titled '< calin > minette_' is the first full release for an artist who has previously served time in avant-guitar bands as well as contributing to compilations on the bip-hop label. both diverse but distinctive backgrounds force their way to the surface here. vs_price's route around the electronica terrain fluctuates between abstraction and ambience, often darting between the two at once. he has a sublime skill for placing the method into the mayhem and making it melodic, hiding dozens of tiny rhythms beneath a corrosive outer-shell. that often threatens to crack open, but never quite does so.
more deliberately difficult than any previous release on the elegant expanding label, '< calin > minette_' is often simultaneously both tuneful and elusive, cutting a sharp route between static crackles, rumbling bass and intimidating snake-hisses. both 'hanta' and 'bretelle' - two of the album's highlights <ETH> reveal this mild chaos in its full, dazzling effect, burying a slothful submarine disco beneath ever-looming eruptions. like autechre - unsure whether to lurk in the shadows or cut enigmatic shapes across the darkest of dancefloors - vs_price holds the door wide open for those mystifying moments in life. and once in, there's no logical way out.
reviewed by ian fletcher -

"...Should you plan on tearing through your brain to cultivate the sounds that tumble within, then [Calin]Minette_ will make the best companion. Vs_Price is sure to expand your mind with his view of abstract digital beauty. Guaranteed..."
Vincent is a French electronic artist based in Toulouse. His work comes from a background in guitar/noise based music and he previously played in the band 'AnaH'. Having recorded for the French labels Bip_Hop and Adenoide, Vs_Price secured his name in 1996 and has continued his audio journey as an electronic musician ever since that point. His debut full-length on London, England's Expanding imprint called [Calin]Minette_ is due for release on March 3d, 2003. Vs_Price is sure to please listeners who appreciate the gritty minimal structures of artists like Oval, Shuttle358, and Microstoria.
What can you expect to hear on [Calin]Minette_ you ask? A well rounded dose of digital abstractions, abrupt electrical downpours and invisible melodies that all seem to unfold into multi-layers of non-rhythms. Tracks like "Bretelle" and "Outrageous" have a sort of acoustic clip-hop vibe to them that practically fade away into the subconscious without your knowing. The two closing tracks, "Pass" and "Dither" extract minute electrical frequencies that roll across the spectrum of minimal electronics with ease. As if crafted by a robotic entity, [Calin]Minette_ is produced with creative textures of malfunctioning electrical wires; Microscopic sheets of static are spread across stretched melodies. Not an easy description but one that should give you at least an "idea" behind the sounds on this debut release.
Pietro - Igloo Mag - 2003

Vincent is a French electronic artist based in Toulouse. His background is steeped in guitar-based music, and yet the Vs_Price release is sure to please listeners who appreciate the gritty minimal structures of artists like Shuttle358, Keith Fullerton Whitman, Fennesz and even Microstoria. 'Eponge' kind of sums up this album very well as an opener, initial pointillist loops mutate into the abrasion of crisped digital textures and a whisper of guitar feedback, before a wicked hip hop tempoed beat drops and just detonates on impact. Calming drifts of melody top the heady brew, and the beat kicks it with some awesome sub bass science redefining low end theory before your ears can take it all in. In keeping with this depth charge opener, the album presents a well rounded dose of invisible melodies, digital interference and abrupt electrical downpours - unfolding multi-layered, arhythmic whorls of sound. Tracks like 'Bretelle' and 'Outrageous' have a crushed hip-hop vibe to them that practically seep into the subconscious, a squashed sound from the school of Musik Aus Strom, no bad thing in all truth. 'Palm' fairly crackles with submerged activity, merging ancestral chords with chattering percussive lines. The two closing tracks, "Pass" and "Dither" extract minute electrical frequencies that roll across the spectrum of sound easily. 'Pass' just takes an important step back, elements are deployed on an uncarved block, mithering loops exert ennervating influence on the album, and as deepest bass rumbles take control, the point dawns that all the disturbances merely smokescreen the ripping good rhythms suggested by these underground elements. '[Calin]Minette_' is produced with the textures of electrical wires in deep communion; microscopic sheets of static spread across stretched melodies. Further impressive emissions then from the Expanding camp, as they close on a shared perspective of a renewable experience, with varied factors taking the attention on each visit to this fine album. – 2003

This is Price’s debut album release, and it unites a fair few different fields, harnessing elements of micro-dub, sound and feedback distortion, bleak melodic soundscapes, sometimes moving through all stages in one track, as on the opener, ‘Eponge’.
Price is clearly not afraid of extremes, so ‘Hanta’ ends with a rip of fierce white noise, then moves nonchalantly into some very low key glitch with the third track, ‘Palm’. The music is always busy, texturally inventive and manages to develop constantly, without ever seeming to break into a sweat. Influences do not spring immediately to mind, though perhaps ‘Outrageous’ is a little reminiscent of Tennis, if they had ever mixed some Kraftwerk into their material. Finally the last two tracks, ‘Pass’ and ‘Dither’ are beautiful: the first has an organic, mulchy feel, as if someone has magnified life close to the soil, and the second is glacial and austere, like music of the Poles.
EW - overload - 03_2003

V/A / bip-hop V.4 / bip-hop / 2001

Vs_Price is comparable with Datachi, but his compositions are tighter. His song 'B3' is really fantastic
L'ENTREPOT - Belgium - December 2001

Discorso simile per il francese Vs_Price, forse il più 'contemporaneo' fra gli artisti della compilation, che sembra registrare linguaggi non convenzionali e scambi di informazioni fra galassie distanti milioni di anni luce ('Palst_N1'); oppure suoni dalla strada sotto casa per farne tracce da club ('B3')
NEURAL - Italy - December 2001

Vs_Price making good use of abrasive noises and digital disturbances
THE MILK FACTORY – UK - October 2001

Same thing with the french Vs_Price, who are also slightly noisy, with deeper bass and more beats than the tracks at the beginning of the CD. But this material is also quite good, for example with the very nice "Plast_N1".
RECYCLE YOUR EARS – UK - October 2001

Other highlights inlcude two excellent slices of advanced techno by french artist vs.price, our favourite being the almost funky 'b3'.
ABSORB - UK - November 2001

The pair of tracks from Vs_Price is similarly balanced: Plast_N1 is a mellow beaty track, with little twitters, chitters and shimmering metal tones. Popping and breathing are in there too. On the other hand, B3 has a rapid pulsing and strange noises, orchestral samples with some variable complex beats.
AMPERSAND ETC - Australia - November 2001

The barely visible mutation from rock band player to computer explorer happened with Vincent (from Vs_price), and finally my favourite...