AUN
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From Montreal - Canada - I recently discovered an artist whom I thought everyone interested in extreme/experimental and noise/ambient music should get acquainted with. Martin Dumais, aka AUN, before turning into the twisted sound wizard he has become, was also secretly active in Montreal's underground techno, tech house and downtempo scenes, for example with his band Les Jardiniers (The Gardeners). But back to our business, his last album Multigone has just been released by Crucial Blast, and it definitely has something strongly atmospheric going on, as Dumais is handling guitars, bass, violin and electronics altogether, to create a borderline ambient/metal majestuous piece of work. The first two tracks Multigone and Consumed by Flies are massive, heavy, drone-dirge, epic fire brails of alienated textures. Both songs might as well burn your brain and leaves you breathless and self-consumed. If you ask me, this doesn't only bears the mark of an extreme noise take on volcano drone metal, but it also, like on the magickal Steel Skull Plain, investigates through surrealistic and psychedelic dark industrial ambient figures. It's limitless music so to speak or as to breeze out unclear - whatever linguistics you prefer.

Surprisingly, next song Stables sounds like backward Stoner rock on ecstasy. Its very fluid like, and yet the badass rocking feeling is all over the place and growing more and more weirded out. And as the song is dissolving, Halfmoon Halfchoke takes the next lead and shines through its shimmering, blazing, fuzzy, slumbering, drony, hypnotizing, blissed-out, foggy and celestial ambient ascension. Palejoy then exposes a more beatlord side of AUN, and I must say I'm quite impressed: at some point, I was even thinking to myself that this was like some kind of Psyche Doomic Trip Hop or something. The guitars sound saturated, eerily industrial, reminding me of a rusty, bubbling, phosphorescent mire, while the deep bass line groove underneath is perfectly assembled in a way you can't resist to head nod along the strong atmosphere. Last song Kwelbo Krong goes back to more noise territory covering, which includes many other extraterrestrial influences. Add to that a very oppressive quality within the guitar noise riffing and it easily gets both overloaded and meditative at the same time. Contradictio? None at all. Extreme music the way AUN does it basically crosses, sometimes many, sometimes quite a few dense and highly compacted emotions against each other, to the point where it just feels naturally encompassing.

From zero to infinity, I might easily say that Multigone, as an album, conveys and maximizes the darker spirits of Extreme metal, while actually keeping up with psychedelism in sculpture and avant ambient/noise in texture and genre. With this album, Dumais really captured an organised, organic and otherworldly vision, only to let us experience its spectral liveliness. By the way, Multigone is limited to 300 copies so in case you would want to experience it at home, act fast! And for those who would enjoy discovering the specifically drone/ambient side-brother of AUN, way more minimal than what I described in this review, I suggest you click on the record's name, if you want to download the free four songs mp3-album FIELD, which was released by Clinical Archives in 2007. This hasn't made as much an impact on me as Multigone did, but it's another facet to AUN's unpredictable art.

Olivier Côté

- http://www.avantgarde-metal.com/content/reviews2.php?id=282


Aun
Multigone (Crucial Blast)
It’s no wonder Montrealer Martin Dumais (of les Jardiniers) inked a deal with the highly respected Crucial Blast label for this solo project, as this very limited release knows when to pulverize and when to let off of the gas with some great psychedelic flourishes. The maelstrom of noise on the title track sets the mood perfectly, weaving a tapestry of sound that sets the pace for the crushing seven tracks here. If you dig Sunn O)))’s power drones and Keiji Haino’s vistas of violent frequencies, this should be right up your alley. With only 300 copies released, better snatch this one up quick. 8/10 - Montreal Mirror


It’s well past two in the morning. This afternoon I had three false starts for reviews that I just couldn’t get moving no matter how many times I wrote a crappy opening paragraph. It happens. Sometimes you have to put it away and go have a glass of orange juice. When I got around to checking out Aun’s Motorsleep (Alien8 Recordings), it became clear it was music for the quiet hours.

So here I am, enveloped in it again. My eyes are doing that fast blinking thing that you never think looks like you’re falling asleep until you see it happening to someone else, but the drone this one-man band emits is encompassing and chilling and hearing it is like chewing gum to keep yourself awake while you drive. I don’t even know what that means.

Aun is the solo project of Martin Dumais, who is from Montr?al, Quebec. For phonetics’ sake, pronounce that “kay-beck.” It sounds better.

It’s almost post-everything, but Dumais keeps Aun somewhat grounded on the James Plotkin-mastered Motorsleep, letting layers of feedback soundscapes run wild on “Erzot” and “With Bows Bent,” but bordering on minimalism at points of “Tongueless Vigils” and never quite losing control the way one gets the sense Aidan Baker likes to with his solo work. The precise processes that go into making music like this, I couldn’t say, but I imagine it involves a laptop and a lot of guitar pedals. Maybe one of those old, boxy samplers.
Whatever it is, Dumais can make it sweet and welcoming, like on the quiet opening title track, or he can crash it down on you with abrasive ringing vibrations like in the earlier moments of “Unworlds.” I once heard Robert Fripp say at a soundscape performance he was giving that the average person can tolerate no more than 20 minutes of this kind of noise at a time. What Fripp was doing was somewhat less active than Aun. The reason Motorsleep works for its near-hour-long duration is because of the Motor.

The tracks are movements more than songs; Dumais mostly weaves his way out of one and into another seamlessly and Motorsleep becomes a larger piece for its relative lack of definition. As such, it is a monumental work of ambience and atmospheric construction. The underlying feedback of “Neiges” is rough-sounding, but blanketed in the drone placed on top of it, it sounds as though Dumais was hoping the two sounds would suddenly fall into harmony with each other and thus become something bigger than their individual essences. That or the opposite. I’m not sure. It’s very late.

Motorsleep is beautiful at times and cruel at others. The obvious metaphor for any type of music that comes on in waves is the ocean, but rather than crests and caps I see the sky in fast motion, the undulating particles of the aurora and speeding clouds drawing pictures and disappearing while Alfred Tennyson takes notes for later. I see the colors I see when I close my eyes and can still see the light of the computer monitor through my eyelids; neither bright nor dark, but square and malleable into anything I want them to be. Ocean or sky or human. It doesn’t matter.

Five minutes into closer “Then Spring” — immediately following “Neiges” as it would have to — the album’s final segment is announced with resounding tones. Victorious tones. And they come one at a time the way fingers hit individual notes on a church organ, letting go of one at the very moment of hitting the next, a child’s hand playing with the keys. And unlike a darker work, Motorsleep ends on Spring, with life, the album reborn from itself and then finished and quiet. So be it.
- The Obelisk


AUN/Blackhorse (oral cd 18) RATED ****.5
With "Blackhorse" Martin Dumais aka AUN shifts into a more dreamy and less experimental form of music. The overall feel is that the composition is more relaxed and AUN varies in its subtle attack with many different strategies ranging from simple but effective lushy drone pieces to more structured tracks with strings and other instruments always flexing and changing. Dumais wrestles with loops and keeps the listener focused for the whole 55 minutes of "Blackhorse". His tunes evoke both post-industrial revolutionaries and modern artists dealing with experimental music. It's not too far-fetched to think of AUN as the modern Canadian equivalent of projects like Zoviet France or Cranioclast. My highest recommendation for this one.
Review by: Andrea Vercesi (CHAIN DLK)

- Chain DLK


Unerschöpfliches Quebec. Mit Martin Dumais, Hautec-Labelmacher, DJ und Hälfte des House-Acts Les Jardiniers, lerne ich einen weiteren seit Jahren aktiven Kopf der Montrealer Electronica-Szene kennen. Als AUN steuert er gleich zwei eindrucksvolle Produktionen zum ORAL-Programm bei, von dem BA bereits mit Mr. Schmuck's Farm und Angel & Hildur Gudnadottir einen Vorgeschmack vermitteln konnte. Mule (ORAL 15) und ebenso Blackhorse (ORAL 18) entfalten aus Gitarrensounds und Programming Klanglandschaften, die noch so frisch sind, dass es noch Jahrmillionen dauern wird, bevor die ersten Paarhufer darüber galoppieren werden. Hier ist alles noch in Wallung und Gärung, es rumort der plasmatische Untergrund, die Oberfläche wirft Blasen und faltet sich, die Atmosphäre wird durchdröhnt von Schöpfungsbrausen. Erz ist noch so weich, dass es sich 'meldal' schreibt, die Luft ist 'zum Schneiden' dick. Musikalisch gesagt, Dark Ambient ist noch zu industrial aufgewühlt, um in dieser Landschaft zu träumen, geschweige denn umher zu schweifen. Hier sind sogar noch die Moleküle 'in Arbeit'. Nicht rauchende Schlote des 19. Jhdts., sondern rauchende Vulkane der Kreide- und Tertiärzeit passen da 'ins Bild'. Aun dongt ein pulsierendes Aum, gleichzeitig basslastig und obertonreich. Inmitten von 'stehenden', sublim schimmernden 'Orgel'-Drones, die er bei Blackhorse allerdings zunehmend esoterisch moduliert, und schubweise anbrausenden Flirrsounds meint man manchmal sogar Chorstimmen oder dunkle Flöten zu hören, paranormal und halluzinatorisch. ORAL rückt Aun in die Nähe von Phill Niblock, mir kommt eher Organum in den Sinn. - BAD ALCHEMY


Aun - Mule(Oral Records)

Figure de proue de la sphère électronique montréalaise et membre fondateur des défunts Jardiniers, Martin Dumais émerge avec un nouveau projet à des années-lumière des climats house groovants de son ancien groupe. Évoquant ses premiers pas musicaux et effleurant parfois l'oeuvre d'un Phill Niblock ou d'un Tim Hecker, Mule explore autant les bas-fonds de la musique actuelle que les textures atmosphériques et sombres de l'électro-ambiant, en prenant soin d'emprunter des sentiers noise et industriels abrasifs qui semblent parfois tester la patience de l'auditeur (Mules). Bien que d'un hermétisme parfois frustrant, l'univers dévoilé, à la fois minimal et évocateur, dense et délicat, mérite qu'on y revienne pour en saisir toutes les subtilités. Une trame sonore de sept titres à la fois contrastée, aventureuse et noire comme l'encre.
Stéphane Martel

- Voir


Membre fondateur des populaires Jardiniers (Cafétéria), Martin Dumais refait surface en solo avec le projet Aun, qui se situe à mi-chemin entre la musique contemporaine et l'électronique. Proche des derniers albums de Tim Hecker ou des Torontois Nadja, la démarche actuelle de ce vétéran de la scène québécoise mène à un univers aussi dense que trouble. Aux antipodes de la techno-pop légère de son ancien groupe, Mule rassemble plutôt sept compositions atmosphériques qui ouvrent une brèche vers des paysages sonores turbulents. Trop sombre diront certains, Dumais se risque toutefois à une approche plus complexe où l'écoute attentive s'avère primordiale. Comme à ses débuts, il explore des zones ambiantes sans trop donner dans les états d'âme convenus. Autour de certaines grandes lignes directrices, quelque chose d'étrange s'organise dans ce monde hybride tout en contrastes. Chez Oral, on annonce déjà une suite à Mule pour très bientôt.
David Cantin (collaboration spéciale) - Le Soleil


ICI (12 avril 2007)
AUN MULE Oral
Bien que le nom de Aun soit pour la plupart d'entre nous inconnu,celui de Martin Dumais, autrefois Jardinier et figure pionnière de l'électronique montréalaise , l'est beaucoup moins. A mille lieues de ses allégeances house, l'aventure Mule dicte une direction a la fois minimale, noise et industrielle. La galette oscille constamment entre deux pôles, entre tensions et résolutions,fragilité et abrasivité. Si les sept trames bourdonnent et grincent, elles se déploient également comme des vagues qui viennent et qui repartent, dans un mouvement profondément circulaire. Un sain retour aux sources. - ICI


AUN/Whitehorse (oral cd 19) AUN/Whitehorse/Blackhorse(oral cd 18-19) These two CD's, released separately but amounting to a single body of work, are the sound of Dumais in isolation, free of the weight of commission or outside influence and they demonstrate a penchant for cavernous ambient soundscapes and tiny sepulchral whispers. Theres nearly two hours of music here, but it can be experienced as one vast gaseous drift. Stately melodies unfurl in slow motion, in the distance, air moves, rustling the autumn leaves. Review by: Chris Sharp (WIRE) - Wire


AUN/MULE (oral cd 15) RATED**** AUN is Martin Dumais (also playing with Les Jardiniers ) - one of the prime movers of the experimental music scene in Montreal - a scene that spawned many talented performers. The music that AUN creates is released via Oral Records, a Canadian label home to projects such as CM Von Hausswolf, Joe Colley and the two superb Monoton re-issues. "Mule" is the first of his works to be published and it can be described as post-ambient with an experimental edge. There's melodies in there too and the canvas is different for every track. This music might be largely reprocessed by a computer but it's paradoxically "authentic" as played on a guitar or a piano and this makes Mule a particularly intense and emotional experience. Review: Andrea Vercesi (CHAIN DLK) .. - Chain DLK


Discography

AUN/VII(Important US/CD, Aurora Borealis UK/LP)
AUN/Habsyll-Split LP (Public Guilt/US-Conspiracy/Belgium)
AUN/Black Pyramid(Cyclic Law) out sept 2010
AUN/Utica 7 white vinyl (Drone)
AUN/Mule (Oral)
AUN/Blackhorse (Oral)
AUN/Whitehorse (Oral)
AUN/Multigone (Crucial Blast)
AUN & ALLSEITS/Irrlicht (Oral)
AUN/Motorsleep (Alien8)

Related releases:
Skinwell (with Christian Corvellec)/Tunnels (AngleMondes CD) Oct 08
AUN/Live at Casa del popolo (Oral cdr)
AUN/Live at Fonderie Darling (Oral cdr)
Martin Dumais/Field (Clinical Archives, net Russia)
http://www.archive.org/details/ca021_field
Martin Dumais/Cordo (AMP, net Mexico)
http://www.archive.org/details/amp007


http://www.aundrone.com

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Bio

The prolific guitar, violin and electronic grounded AUN, is the brainchild of Montreal based Martin Dumais. Since its inception in the spring 2007, he has collaborated in a live setting with such luminaries as australian guitarist Oren Ambarchi, drummer Michel Langevin (Voivod), and shared billings in the noise, black metal, and electronic avant-garde realms. In that short period, AUN released no less than 9 albums, including Alien8 Recordings: 'Motorsleep' album, which got rave international reviews, and also unexpectedly made its way to #1 of Montreal’s CKUT ‘s (radio McGill), general chart, and into several 2009 best of lists, an even greater response to the recently released 'VII' is already under way.

Now a duo with his wife and partner, Montreal musician and visual artist Julie Leblanc (synth, percussion, vocals), they recently completed their first european tour in november 2009.

Schooled in the 80'S by the non-musician theories of Brian Eno, by the age of twelve, Dumais had turned is back on his guitar studies to ingest a more challenging diet of, The Residents, Swans, Sonic Youth, Suicide, the first wave of industrial music and american minimalism, whilst creating the blueprints of AUN, on a 4 track recorder, with echo and delay units (mainly delta-lab 1024's), Arp odyssey's and MS-20, early midi hardware and pummelled to dust guitars, rounded out the early studio. By the early 90’s the mostly self taught Dumais, was already a mainstay of the Montreal experimental scene.

Head of Haute Couture and Hautec, two labels who helped bring international attention to such artists as Akufen, Champion, and also with his own award winning project (ADISQ 2001-2004) : Les Jardiniers. A respected producer, he was comissionned to create several radio and televison show themes for the likes of Radio-Canada, and for several art installations. He has performed in the US, UK, France, Germany, Holland, Czech Republic, Belgium, Spain, Switzerland, Argentina, and at such renowned festivals as: Sonar (Barcelona), (Mutek 2000-04-07-08-09), SXSW (Austin Tx), Francofolies (Larochelle, Montreal), In the City (Manchester), Popkomm (Koln), Festival de Jazz de Montréal, Montréal en lumières.

In 2006, he cleaned his slate and delved back into the sounds that originally drew him to music: experimental and ambient thus creating the intriguingly loud and melodic avant-post-everything, and head cleansing live act AUN.

AUN/VII (recent press)

4 STARS : VOIR WEEKLY

ALBUM OF THE WEEK : AQUARIUS

‘ A CROWNING ACHIEVEMENT’ : MONTREAL MIRROR

‘ TO RANK ALONGSIDE GODFLESH’ Pure’ : WIRE

#1 GENERAL & LOUD CHARTS : CKUT FM

‘ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL LISTENING’ : FOXY DIGITALIS

AUN PREVIOUS CONCERTS:

June 11 2010 - Eglise Ste-Cécile, Trois-Rivières, Québec

June 10 2010 – L'agitée, Québec, Qc

June 3 – Mutek (Monument National), Montréal, Qc

May 21, 2010 - FIMAV, Victoriaville

May 17 – Casa del popolo, Montréal, Québec

May 14 – Party Expo, Brooklyn, NY

April 21, 2010 - LFH, Montreal, Qc

Feb 27, 2010 - Nuit Blanche, Place de la Cité, Montréal

Nov 18, 2009 10:00 PM – Avatar, Québec, Qc

Nov 15, 2009 10:00 PM – Le Sonic, Lyon, FR

Nov 14, 2009 10:00 PM – Chicito, Paris FR

Nov 13, 2009 10:00 PM – TAC, Eindhoven, NL

Nov 12, 2009 10:00 PM – Vechtclub, Utrecht, NL

Nov 11, 2009 10:00 PM – XT3, Prague, CZ

Nov 10, 2009 10:00 PM – Club Debil, Dresden, Germany

Nov 6, 2009 10:00 PM – Lab 30 Festival, Ausgburg, Germany

Aug 9, 2009 3:00 PM – Piknic Électronik, Montréal, Quebec

Jul 12, 2009 3:00 PM – Piknic Électronik, Montréal, Quebec

Jul 11, 2008 8:00 PM – Katakombes, Montréal, Québec

Jul 10, 2009 10:00 PM – Smiling Budhah, Toronto, Ontario

Jun 14, 2009 3:00 PM – Piknic Électronik, Montréal, Quebec

May 28, 2009 2:00 AM - MUTEK-Metropolis (Savoy), Montréal, Québec

Apr 22, 2009 9:00 PM - Il Motore, Montréal, Quebec

Apr 5, 2009 9:00 PM - Cagibi , Montréal, Québec

Mar 28, 2009 9:00 AM – Zoobizarre, Montréal, Québec

Mar 18, 2009 10:00 PM - SXSW The Music Gym , AUSTIN, Texas

Mar 14, 2009 8:00 PM – LFH, Montréal, Québec

Mar 6, 2009 9:00 PM - Le Cercle, Québec, Quebec

Nov 1, 2008 8:00 PM - LFH, Montréal, Québec

Oct 29, 2008 8:00 PM - Sala Rossa , Montréal, Québec

Oct 28, 2008 8:00 PM - Sala Rossa , Montréal, Québec

Oct 3, 2008 8:00 PM - Casa del popolo, Montréal, Québec

Sep 19, 2008 8:00 AM – FONTANAS, New York, New York

Sep 14, 2008 8:00 PM - Petit Campus , Montréal, Québec

Jun 12, 2008 8:00 PM - Suoni per il Popolo at Sala Rossa, Montréal, Québec

May 30, 2008 4:00 PM – MUTEK at SAT, Montréal, Québec

May 23, 2008 8:00 PM - Sala Rossa, Montréal, Québec

Apr 11, 2008 8:00 PM – Katakombes, Montréal, Québec

Dec 14, 2007 8:00 PM - lab.synthèse, Montréal, Québec

Dec 1, 2007 8:00 PM - FONDERIE DARLING, Montréal, Québec

Nov 17, 2007 8:00 PM - CASA DEL POPOLO, Montréal, Québec

Oct 3, 2007 8:00 PM - POP MONTR