Hidden in plain sight, grinning through worry, living in insecurity – modern society has returned to a day-by-day race for survival. To be vulnerable is the new normal; afraid, a bare minimum. Something was bound to emerge from the quiet throngs of the new precariat, and Racine is such a voice, setting to music those modern lives defined by uncertainty.
Quelque Chose Tombe (‘Something Falls’) is a set of compositions that confronts demons both inner and outer head-on. Created during a period of necessary unemployment somewhere in Montreal – caring for one’s health can take precedence over work – the music is both a grotesque dance of the goblins and the gentle opiatic breath of the protectors. It’s a harrowing reflection of the prevalent vampiric hypochondria forcing a generation into fatigue.
The sounds crawling out of Racine speak with their own internal logic. Snippets of fractured tunes creak through perturbed post-digital soundscapes, blurred and fragmented along the way into haunting amorphous instrumentals. The two-part title track is multi-part sonic maze where raven-like pitch bent notes gather, a broken rave theme punctures its way through bass fog, and silence clefts the music in two, ushering in a coda of heartbroken ambience. As the album’s suite progresses, Racine shepherds mutant melodic themes in and out of earshot, like clear thoughts bringing temporary order to a state of emotional panic and withdrawal. A host of other sounds too – voices and birdsong, cybernetically deformed – populate Racine’s scarred productions.
Emerging from Quelque Chose Tombe’s constant darkness however, is a latent sense of hope. Racine is turning modern vulnerability into a strength, creating a singular aesthetic to reflect and confront an uncomfortable present.