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Sylvain Chauveau

Singular Forms (Sometimes Repeated)

(Type; US: 13 Apr 2010; UK: 29 Mar 2010)

When Radiohead’s infamous In Rainbows was just a work in progress, singer Thom Yorke described it as “embarrassingly minimal”. In my mind’s ear, I imagined something different than the eventual outcome. I anticipated it to be more like Sylvain Chauveau’s latest offering Singular Forms (Sometimes Repeated). This is music where the power sits in the silence between the soft notes and the even softer noises. It is what Chauveu doesn’t play or doesn’t sing that resonates the loudest. To the virgin ear, he comes across like Depeche Mode’s Dave Gahan only missing a great deal of synthetic flourishes. Upon closer listening, it’s a quiet electronic upheaval of the highest order. The momentum of “Slowburner (With Stillness)” is almost brought to a halt two minutes before it technically ends. Chauveu sums it up best in the song’s lyrics when he sings “Nothing happens / Everything happens.”

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