Technoïde grungy-funk avant-garde improv. music
First a furious hard-hitting beat, metronomic and obstinate, biting and dislocating. Then one hell of a funky-technoide riff sets in, played on a Vintage Moog. Having burnt some rubber, QONIAK can now let rip. And for Vincent Membrez (synth) and Lionel Friedli (drums), “letting rip” means acting like slightly nutty Siamese scientists in a secret lab, randomly turning knobs on a Pro-One 80’s keyboard to see what happens; taking contemporary jazz and cutting it to pieces with a techno-indus blade, math rock scalpel, overlapping tempos and rhythmical breaks gleaned from Meshuggah. With one foot in Area 51, the other in the underground passageways of Stranger Things, “we experiment flat out”, proclaim QONIAK! And desire does the rest.
QONIAK: we hadn’t heard from them since Sentient Beings (2013), an improvised journey through a pixelated universe where Yoda and Dr Spock play Pong tripping on LSD. Their excuse? Vincent and Lionel were weighed down by projects. But they missed their improvised tête-à-têtes, and there were so many compositions waiting – organic, violent and joyous. The abrupt rhythmic modulations of “Scoul” and “Rooin”, in which the world seems to suddenly lose balance, begin to plummet and then miraculously find its bearings. “Bokal” and “Qo” with their immediate and toxic trance beauty, like a flower growing in the midst of a minefield.
As if thrown onto Saturn without assistance, QONIAK recorded 8 tracks live at Artefax Studios. David Odlum was in charge of mixing. The coordinates: 37°14′06″N, 115°48′40″W. Watch out, the air is unstable! To venture here is to dive into a video game from the 80s full of aliens, that could have been designed by the brothers Duffer and Carpenter. To stay is to feel your cells vibrate, sparkle, short-circuit and dissolve into a quantic experience.