iiii! (SB020)

by Julien Desailly

  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    Limited edition of 150 copies, assembled, painted and printed by hand— each copy is unique !
    Includes artwork by Julien Desailly and a poem by Ross Heselton. Digisleeve is 300gr. recycled cardboard, insert is printed on natural white 160gr. paper, CD-R is silkscreened and artwork is printed with stamps.

    Includes unlimited streaming of iiii! (SB020) via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ships out within 5 days
    edition of 150 

      €12 EUR or more 


  • Streaming + Download

    Includes high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more. Paying supporters also get unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app.
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Recorded on the 5th of November 2019 during a recording residency in a disused water-tower in Wesserling (Alsace, France) "iiii!" is the first collection of solo gaïda bagpipe improvisations by French musician and artist Julien Desailly (Pancrace, Duo Desailly/Maurel, A Spurious Tale, Dix-Sept Saturnes, Mafila Ko, Gésir, Duo Decazes/Desailly...).

By focusing on each track on a different playing technique (most of them gleaned in traditional Irish and Bulgarian music) and repeating it, bending it and pushing it to its limit, the album explores, with radicalism, precision and mastery (but also humour!), both the resonances of the gaïda and of the water tower itself (a massive, hollow, multi-storey-high concrete tower that rises amidst a factory plant in the Thann valley.)

The recording method consisted in two stereo couples of microphones, the first being placed on the towers' ground floor, the second installed on the handrail of the spiral staircase, midway to the towers' top, allowing the musician to move between the two and shift the sound source, letting the towers vast and dusty reverberations become a voice in their own right, and giving the recordings a genuine sense of space and movement.

Throughout the albums ten tracks, Desailly's metamorphic pipes alternate between a Colin Stetson-like sweetness and the aggressiveness of a swarm of belligerent wasps, at times sounding like cryptic morse code messages, at others like strange foghorns blowing in a distant dream of Getatchew Mèkurya, here interweaving into arpeggios evocative of the mad rushes of Steve Reich, or yet bursting into a goblin-like laughter recalling Wolfgang von Kempelen’s speaking machine.


released March 12, 2020

Julien Desailly: gaïda bagpipes, artwork,
Ross Heselton: recording, poem, voice, mastering

Thanks to Théo Zimmermann, Collectif Art des Possibles & Dreieck Interférences




Soleils Bleus Strasbourg, France

Micro-record label and publishing house for folk and experimental music, writing, visual arts and poetry.

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