A musician with many faces and multiple flavours, Simon Chioini has been making us dance as much as think for nearly a decade in Montreal. Under his real name, as DJ Voilà, or as part of the electrifying duo Musique Nouvelle, he quickly established himself as a pillar of local electronic and experimental music. The launch of his label Humidex, founded last year in the company of his friends Absurde and softcoresoft, is only the concrete expression of his major role in the techno ecosystem here and abroad. It’s with his usual discretion that he delivers a flamboyant four-track EP that will surely spice up the rest of the summer season.
His background in electroacoustic music wastes no time in making itself felt. The background textures he skillfully weaves open the way for percussion of a rare quality that gingerly approaches drum & bass. If they’re applied sparingly on the introductory “Wasteland (the wish)”, let’s just say that the follow-up gives us our money’s worth. “Metallic Sheen” and “Overworked” trigger an irresistible urge to move and could make anyone get up from their seats. The brilliant fusion of acid and breakbeat music that he masterfully serves is refreshingly original, a reminder that these styles are still under-exploited in Quebec. Let’s hope that he will inspire a few to venture onto the paths paved by labels like Rephlex, Warp, and Planet Mu, all avowed influences on Chioini. However, it’s with the change of tone in the final lap that the Montrealer surprises us the most. By intelligently exploring more downtempo territories, he gently guides us to the exit, leaving us eager to start the obviously too-short experience again.