Stephen Beaupré: It’s Gl’amour When You Have It (Musique Risquée)
It had been quite a while since I’d heard anything new from Canadian producer Stephen Beaupré, whose earlier work on Akufen’s Musique Risquée was always a treat to my ears. Beaupré was definitely a kindred spirit in the arena of cut-up, glitchy house music like Akufen, and so about five years after the last release I heard (he’s had a handful of 12"s since then that passed me by) his aesthetic has evolved with the times. The two tracks on Gl’amour total around 20 minutes and each one is a journey in itself. “Gl’amour” is a dancefloor track that takes patiently takes its time bubbing up to the surface. A non-English language vocal sample kicks it off sparsely, and it builds from there, integrating samples of strings and percussion before it finally hits a stride with a coursing bassline and nice punchy stabbed chord pattern. The flipside, “When You Have It,” is less subtle and is a slick house track out of the gate. Its bouncy bassline is a nice counterpoint to the more persistent monotone bass of the A-side, with guitar and piano riffs entering the picture to lend it a more obvious house sensibility. Vocal samples also enter the mix, moving it forward. Both cuts share a knack for musical story-telling, not content to just be a DJ tool or a groove but rather an arc with a beginning, middle and end, something that is not always easily accomplished. In this sense I consider both tracks to be successes, reaffirming Beaupré’s reputation as a top-notch producer.