Time is Color is a conceptual idea based on Cēdric’s own perception of time and how it could be closely related to colour – as he explains:
Time can be seen as an objective thing. It is something we all know – we have clocks and calendars – but there’s also a subjective side, because every human being perceives time differently, depending on certain situations and moments in life. We can perceive a moment as long or short, for instance, whereas “objective” time is not so abstract. That thought really got me to try to write tunes that would translate these thoughts and feelings into music.
Time Color is a broad based jazz fusion album with the piano of Cédric Hanriot anchoring the jazz element with style and flair. ‘Monday the 26th’ is a good example of the use of soundscape under the vocals of Days with the piano bringing in the contemporary jazz element. There is a good mix of repeated phrases over which the melody can be heard in a classical music style construction with additional electronica – an intriguing start to the album. ‘Run’ has a spacious feel about it but with the percussion adding a sense of urgency: a track pulling in two directions at the same time.
‘Water’ begins with spoken word from Days that have the feel of a voice over from a film noir screen play. The track has a mid to slow tempo that ebbed and flowed with the electronica element contrasting nicely against the piano lines. ‘Souly’ moves the album subtly on to a jazz funk vibe. The drum patterns are steady allowing the piano play with runs, tempo changes, and textural variations that make this number the standout track of the album.
The piano plays over a metronomic pulse in ‘Reverie’ before electronica and bass add to the overall sound creating something I found quite moving but without being able to say why. There is a real beauty to this track, that kept me returning to it, particularly towards the end where the sound increased in intensity before fading away to nothing. ‘Come as you are/Teardrop’ is the only track not written by Cédric Hanriot being that it takes tunes from Nirvana and Massive Attack – two bands I am familiar with but not the tunes themselves. The resulting conflation works well with its contemporary jazz feel.
‘Further’ features very good bass work from Bertrand Beruard and the interplay between him and Hanriot is, for me, of the highest order. As the tune develops so do the textures, the energy and the strength of playing – having said all that I found the conclusion a touch disappointing with the unnecessary use of the electronic ending. ‘Autumn’ is an atmospheric piece with a pastoral feel about it. The intensity of the playing develops as the tune does with its wonderfully powerful crescendo. Time In Color is dotted throughout with short interludes that I found interesting and perhaps can be seen as ideas to be developed on a future album.
Time Is Color is an engaging body of work that although rooted in modern jazz idiom, contains elements of genres including hip-hop, funk, soul, electronica and all sub-divisions therein. The sound has evolved from Cēdric’s love for many different styles of music, that have allowed him to lend his expertise to the projects of high-profile artists outside of the core jazz spectrum such as Lulu Gainsbourg, Luis Salinas and Maria Mendes. The outcome is an engaging recording that highlights the innovative nature and musical flair of its creator and examples just how well different genres and styles can be brought together to create a whole that fascinates, intrigues, and captivates the listener while maintaining a strong connection to the art form that is jazz.
Musicians: Cédric Hanriot – piano, sound design, keyboards; Bertrand Beruard – basses; Ellie Martin Charriere – drums, percussion.
Guest musicians: Days – vocals on 1, 3, 4, 6, 9; Braxton Cook – alto sax on 12; Jason Palmer – trumpet on 6.
Tracklist: 1. Monday the 26th. 2. Run. 3. Nitro. 4. Water. 5. Souly. 6. Souly Interlude. 7. Rĕverie. 8. Come as you are/Teardrop. 9. Friday. 10. Further. 11. Autumn. 12. Further interlude. 13. Solace.