Music

Rodolphe Coster and band unleash lo-fi dirge ‘Dolls Their Maps’

New album ‘High With The People’ out now via Capitane Records

Multidisciplinary artist and legendary activist from the Brussels scene, Rodolphe Coster and his band are pleased to announce the release of their debut album High With The People, out today through Capitane Records.

Coster has already lived several lives, several deaths and as many resurrections. At 46, he releases a first album in his own name this year called High With The People. The album recorded at the legendary Studio G in Brooklyn was produced by Matt Jones of Male Gaze and brings together a dream team including Jeff Tobias (Sunwatchers), Sarah Register (Lou Reed, Depeche Mode, Protomartyr), Atsuko Hatano, (Jim O ‘ rourke) and Maya Postepski (The Organ) among others.

The result is a cold and irreverent rock, free from all shackles and oozing the rage to live through every pore.

On music of great sonic and emotional power that recalls the great hours of the Manchester scene, Rodolphe delivers stories of lives told in hallucinated moments of poetic bravery. From whispering, to screaming, to belching, all expressive means are employed by the punk songwriter to convey what has been kept inside for too long: the immeasurable frustration of seeing the ship sink and the “good guys” tirelessly lose, the irrepressible need to live and love as the only bulwark against the ongoing destruction.

What Rodolphe Coster and his group seem to tell us is that the bulldozers that we hear in the distance might come and destroy the last playgrounds and raze the last parks but their hum will never be enough to drown out the songs of the sirens nor those of the rock bands who shout in the night for another world to come. The album is a tribute to those who hold the position and nourish hope.

High With The People here, now!

In the past, Rodolphe Coster was part of several artistic collectives and rock groups and worked extensively as a composer and performer for contemporary dance projects that allowed him to travel the world. It was during these trips that he met the collaborators who form his current entourage.

Over the past 5 years, the Brussels artist has performed in Canada, Europe, the United States and Japan and has opened for Black Dice, Grimes, Molly Nilsson, Liars, Italia 90 and Thee Oh Sees, among others.

The singles announcing the album were supported by Brooklyn Vegan, New Noise Magazine, Earmilk, Psychedelic Baby Magazine, etc.

Rodolphe Coster reflects on the making of the album:

“Arriving in New York, Antoine Pasqualini from Brussels Krautrock band Monolithe Noir, connected me with his friend Alexis Berthelot a Sound Engineer living in New York and we chatted about music, culture, women, and Alexis told me: ‘I loved this so much, we have to visit the studio where I work, please come there tomorrow I’ll introduce you to people there’. It was Joel Hamilton’s studio , a friend of Tom Waits, Mike Patton and PJ Harvery, he was also the engineer of RZA and The Black Keys.

After the visit Alexis told me: ‘If you come back, we can book the studio and record an album with your music. We will ask musicians and we do it right’. In a certain way, Alexis had just written the first lines of High With The People.

But I was feeling as If I was still missing one side of the adventure. I wanted to work some strings arrangements and I managed to bring in Atsuko Hatano, a genius violinist from Tokyo who plays with Jim O Rourke. We did the recording session in New York with the band I put together and Atsuko wrote the scores in Japan and came later to Brussels to record the strings with Ensemble Musiques Nouvelles. That was It, five days of recording in New York, back to Brussels recording Atsuko scores in an afternoon at Studio Dada. Then, we all had a nine months break before the mixing session at Studio G. That was made by Matt, Alexis and me. 

During the mixing session we went deep into the meaning of the record. At that time, I was fascinated by Fred Hampton and all ha accomplished as chairman for the Black Panthers  i thought he was probably the most brilliant human of all time. On an famous public speech, Fred said he wanted to feel himself “High Off The People”, I thought I could give a echo this thought by naming my album “High With The People” which is all about what happened in the making of the album. Another artist very dear to me is Jeremy Deller. 

I would also add that the album was mastered by the great artist Sarah Register. She’s worked with Lou Reed, Depeche Mode, David Bowie, Protomartyr. The mastering helped the entire record, the guitars got a real body, the deep work of Matt and Alexis was gorgeously enhanced. We finally met Sarah and I when she came in Brussels to play with Kim Gordon, And I Must say I am so happy that this beautiful team could be completed by her.”

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