After harmonizing New Orleans with "Nola Chérie", Chassol presents INDIAMORE
Filmed in Calcutta and Vanarasi in July 2012, Chassol harmonized sounds, images and traditional music with these chord progressions that just look like him.
“He told me that he was seeing Indian music as two horizontal lines.
The first one, usually played by a tampura, symbolized the bass.
It was a flow, a tone, a trunk. A root that defined the anchor point of harmony.
The second line represented the melody and its sinuous paths. It would arise from the first one, cross over and under it, and, as if magnetized, would always go back on it.
He was telling me he wanted to play his favorite chords inside the intervals that looked like the American Indians’ mountains”
(excerpt from the introduction of Indiamore)
The first encounters of Chassol with Indian music date from his teenage years where, thanks to John Mc Laughlin and his band Shakti, he could hear ragas, rhythm structures and Indian instruments mixed with jazz.
Then came Ravi Shankar, Hariprasad Chaurasia and the devotional songs.
More recently, the documentaries by Louis Malle (Phantom India) and by Johan van der Keuken (The Eye Above The Well) left their marks on him and after having harmonized New-Orleans in “Nola Cherie”, the choice to attempt at an harmonization of life, sounds, motifs, noises and traffic from Northern India quite naturally grew on him.
In Calcutta and Varanasi, India’s most ancient city, he went to shoot sitarists, percussionists, singers, dancers, the kids, the Ganga, the city and the apparent chaos of the traffic.
Indiamore spreads over four movements, one same tonal harmonic suite of warm and real pop chords that marries the modal Indian music usually resting on a sole continuous bass line played by the tampura.
In repeating these images, in treating their sound as a music material and in harmonizing the actors’ speech with his own harmonic obsessions, he achieves to blend a documentary approach into a purely musical work.