During the 10th century, Ademar de Chabannes, a French monk, described some mysterious ailment which affected peasants in the Limousin region of France- causing spasms, convulsions, hallucinations and consuming the victims’ bodies with some invisible fire. People suspected witchcraft, possession of the devil. But these illnesses were in fact due to poisoning through by a parasite in the rye grain… Fear and terror spread throughout the country. It coupled with many Medieval fears, including famine, war, violence, death, plague, leprosy…
''Le Mal des ardents'' stems from this deep history. The history of losing one’s mind, which gives way to this nightmare that keeps growing , transforming, mutating: fear. It is the shadow which never leaves us alone. It is the restless beast which is never to be tamed.
It is the mutating virus. It thrived on the fear of fire, deep forest, witches gatherings, folklore, and always fitted in with the times!
A mad man, in his cell was scared of a woodlouse, while the cell keeper was scared of the mad man……who was the maddest of the two?
''Le Mal des ardents'' is a concept album about fears, terrors, about the balance between folklore and reason, myth and common sense, light and darkness, past and present, modernity and archaism.
This album has borrowed much: it marries minimalism, purity , fine approach and ancient instruments right through to traditional music (hurdy gurdy, shawm, polyphonies, percussions, gongs…) ; gloom and oppressive ambiance of dark ambient; the slow pace of ritual music- along with a kind of mystic designing of a sound object wavering between modernity and archaism .
This is a chaotic and mad album, which voices rise towards beauty, lifting it away from some occult mud.
''Le Mal des ardents'' takes us back to a forgotten world- a primal, ancient, wild and free world, pervaded by secret dances of sorcerers’, unfathomable forests, remote and lifeless places.
LA BREICHE dates back to the early 1990’s, at the beginning of the second wave of Black Metal, when albums were not merely albums, but manifestoes and acts.
« Here we are in this fictitious state, transforming images and feelings. We are interested in producing free and expressive music, pertaining to evocative themes, which we riddle through reason, philosophy and poetry.”
LA BREICHE actually means « the witch », and features two well-known musicians. Arexis and Lafforgue originally founded STILLE VOLK- a band best known since 1994 as one of the pioneers of Pagan Folk in Europe.
In 1991, they founded the first Pagan Black French band, called SUS SCROFA, with a first album released in…..2015 at Nomos Dei productions...
In 2000, Arexis, alias IHAN, released an experimental music album on the mythic label « Mille plateaux records » and the legendary compilation CLICKS AND CUTS, while Lafforgue took part in the HANTAOMA project. Arexis is also member of COBER ORD, which first album was released in 2015 in Mantra spenta/Phage tapes.
The duo was created in 2014 : after several offers in the US , Russia and France, they chose to work with COLD SPRING RECORDS and are now planning to be on stage in 2016.
'En ce temps-là, le Mal des Ardents s'alluma. Un nombre incalculable d'hommes et de femmes eurent le corps consumé d'un feu invisible ; de tous côtés les lamentations remplissaient la terre'' (Adémar de Chabannes, Xème siècle)
“This is the time when the Holy Fire went ablaze. Countless men and women saw their bodies being consumed by some invisible fire; moaning and wailings filled the earth.” (Ademar de Chabannes, 10th century)
LA BREICHE (wich mean 'the Witch' in old pyrenean langage), is a duet created in France in the end of 2014 by Yan Arexis and Patrick Lafforgue to founding members of well know band STILLE VOLK, considered as pionniers in Pagan folk style (whom band was created in 1994 and runs 6 albums and a lot of concerts on main stages in Europe like Hellfest open air, Castlefest, Sauzipf, Cernunnos fest, la loco & divan du monde Paris…).
Arexis & Lafforgue are also members of SUS SCROFA, created in 1991, one of the two first pagan black metal acts in France. So….veterans.
> Yan AREXIS
is member of STILLE VOLK (1994 > 1998 and come back in 2012). He released solo glitch-electronic album on MILLE PLATEAUX records in 2000 (as IHAN). He create the obscure project COBER ORD who released an album ('Le revers du Soleil' edited by Nomos Dei on CD, and Phage Tapes/Turgid Animal on Tape). He's also member of SUS SCROFA (first ep was released on Nomos Dei in the begining of 2016). He share the stage with bands like GNAW, OvO, TREPONEM PAL, a lot of metal acts or acoustic bands like CRUACHAN, MOONSORROW, collaborate with Julien Louvet from YRSEL/THE AUSTRASIAN GOAT …
> Patrick LAFFORGUE
is member of STILLE VOLK (since 1994). He released 6 albums with STILLE VOLK as lead vocalist and hurdy gurdy player, but also plays a lot of traditionnal instruments. He's also member of SUS SCROFA (first ep was released on Nomos Dei in the begining of 2016) and HANTAOMA. Since 1994 he share the stage with a lot of bands in metal, folk, medieval scene..
LA BREICHE is created with various instruments : both traditionnal & medieval percussions, hurdy gurdy (acoustic & electro acoustic), stones, vegetal, flutes, voices, gongs, steel objects, horns, field recording, handmade instruments, Chalémie as well as loopers. LA BREICHE use acoustic instruments only !!
Band consist in AREXIS & LAFFORGUE, co-founding members of STILLE VOLK ‘(Holy records), also in Pionnier french pagan
black act SUS SCROFA. Arexis is also part of the duo COBER ORD (Mantra spenta productions, Phage Tapes records, Turgid animal records)....more