Ludovic Alarie – We’re A Dream Nobody Wrote Down

We’re A Dream Nobody Wrote Down is a deceptively easy-going album. The product of Montreal’s Ludovic Alarie arrives on a new label – Chouchou, established by the artist for his own work, his own freedoms. Alarie explains that he wanted the ability to release work, unrestricted by traditional formats – the CD was too limiting, so instead a ‘zine-album’ was conceived.

Working with visual artist Sylvain Chaussée and graphic designer Jolin Masson, Luodvic Alarie has developed a piece that shares lyrics, images, and seven-inch vinyl – in all of this there is a bookmark with a digital download. Content faces out in all of these forms.

It is not just in the material design elements that Alarie collaborates to great effect. Contained in the music there are contributions from a diverse group of supporters. Simone Pace (Blonde Redhead) Mishka Stein (Patrick Watson) and Warren C. Spicer (Plants & Animals) lend energy and insight to the process. Spicer also occupied the producer and mixer’s seat, and in doing so he accents the sensitivities of Alarie’s tone with significant empathy.

Musically, there is a smoothness to progress across the ten tracks. Titled and sung, for the main in French – there are more moments of nuance and suggestion than there are of explicit definition, at least for English-language listeners. However, it’s the sense of things, not the exact meaning that Ludovic Avarie is concerned with. Everything here is delivered with tenderness, if not timidity. Softness if not sweetness.

Recorded in a dense period of only four days, remarkably there is no fever or fried edges to the tracks. Timbre is unified across the tunes, and a misty kind of nostalgia settles on things – but these tones have no sense of being forced, or coerced into process. Songs breathe, and invite reflection of the audience.

“I don’t want to ask you anything.” sings Alarie in the title track. This isn’t an issue of disinterest – this is a statement of acceptance. The magic of impermanence, and the futility of preserving anything is noted. Instead, in the soft light of this sequence, it is the fleeting nature of time, the preciousness of inter-personal chemistry that is celebrated.

Ludovic Alarie attempts to define nothing – he celebrates the nebulous nature of humanity, and the abstracts of meaning. “We don’t exist, we don’t exist, we don’t exist….. Where did we go? – nobody knows, nobody knows…”


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