Photo: Julian Daiber

The Trouble Notes Shine in the Regal Poignance of Their “Grand Masquerade” (premiere)

Berlin-based "indie-world fusion" trio the Trouble Notes blend violin, guitar, and percussion into a whirlwind of contemporary and classic sounds on this instrumental track, "Grand Masquerade".

Based in Berlin with members from the U.S., Germany, and the UK, instrumental trio the Trouble Notes are naturally inspired by a menagerie of sights and sounds that they’ve garnered from around the world. Calling their work “indie-world fusion”, their adept blend of violin, guitar, and percussion easily lives up to the name. Following the release of a brand new live album, Live at Berlin, and in the midst of an autumn tour throughout the U.S. and Canada, the Trouble Notes are premiering their music video for “The Grand Masquerade” with PopMatters.

Those who have followed the Trouble Notes’ exploits on social media will likely recognize the composition, with its ascending amalgamation of musical genres and world cultures. The trio had previously performed it on the streets of Strasbourg to raucous applause, both in France and internationally once a video recording of the rendition went viral, amassing over a hundred million views to date. Filmed and edited by Drone Pixel’s Stephen Hillairet and freelance video developer Fabien Belmonte, their official music video for “Grand Masquerade” was shot in Château de Sauvan—an 18th-century castle and historical monument unlike any other still standing in the Provence region. The château provides the perfect regal backdrop for the Trouble Notes to flourish, reinvigorating its halls with their soaring arrangement.

On the composition, the Trouble Notes say, “‘The Grand Masquerade’ is the paradox of our everyday life, forced to hide our true selves from the social and familiar norms of society. Be it a political dissident lurking in the shadows of an oppressive regime, a daughter hiding her ambition from a patriarchal society, a son desiring to escape a career path encouraged by his family, or an adolescent terrified of the reactions of friends and family to his or her sexuality, every society creates a need to mask our true selves.”