From 1970 on, sound engineer Bruno Menny (born 1947) worked at Acousti Studio, an independent recording facility ran by film technician and sound engineer Yuri Korolkoff – the Mai 1968 single I posted earlier was produced by Acousti, for instance. During the 1970s, Menny recorded many French folk and progressive bands, especially Malicorne and their side projects (Gabriel Yacoub “Trad. Arr.” 1978, La Bamboche 1979 LP, etc). He was also the recording engineer for Hugues de Courson’s Ballon Noir label releases (Emmanuelle Parrenin “Maison Rose” 1977 ; Ripaille “La vieille que l’on brûla” 1977 ; Benoît Widemann “Tsunami” 1979). Bruno Menny also worked for 10 years at studio Fremontel in Conche-en-Ouche, near Evreux in Normandy, owned by Jacques Denjean. He now works as French jazz label Label Bleu recording engineer.
It seems folk music wasn’t Menny’s sole passion, though and, according to sound engineer Jean-Pierre Bameulle, back in the 1970s, when the folk band had left the studio, Menny used to create electronic music from oscillators and splicing tape. On Cosmographie, his unique solo LP published 1972, Menny uses synthesizer, electric guitar, voices, found objects and sound effects to create two rich and intense electroacoustic music epics. ‘Orbite Autour de la Planète 3’ is a breathtaking piece for synth and tape with all the French musique concrète trademarks, what with its provocative electronic sounds, emphasis on lyrical and poetical traits, juxtaposition of weird, highly contrasting sounds and, of course, tape manipulation (like the metronome used around 10:00). Strangely enough, it all ends in a Fugue-like, virtuoso passage played on synthesizer (17:00) and clearly inspired by J.-S. Bach! The use of electric guitar on ‘Cosmos’ (from 7:15) is reminiscent of Bjørn Fongaard’s 1965 Galaxy I posted earlier, in as much as it transcends the instrument’s clichés to send it into higher, cosmic dimensions. Cosmos succeeds in creating a plausible, desolate outer space sound world, as recorded from a derailed satellite, one imagine. The journey ends with vocal incantations a la Can’s Aumgn (13:30).
Bruno Menny ‘Cosmographie’
01 Orbite Autour de la Planète 3 (19:09)
02 Cosmos (15:55)
Total time 35:04
LP released by Arion, ARN 30 U 085, France, 1972