The Hard Bargain

by Andre LaFosse

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Zen Gun 07:13
Remediation 09:24


One of two new solo recordings released by Andre LaFosse in June 2012, "The Hard Bargain" is "the mid-life crisis rock album."

What does it mean - if anything - to release an instrumental guitar rock album in 2012? For musician Andre LaFosse, it means giving himself permission to make "The Hard Bargain," which he describes as "the single most unfashionable music I've ever released."

"The Hard Bargain" is full of dichotomies and contradictions. It's equal parts classic rock pomp, proggy excess, and experimental edginess. It morphs from upbeat and catchy to sprawling, noisy, and dissonant - sometimes in the same piece. It's a "straight-ahead rock album" where the average track length is somewhere between 6 and 10 minutes. It's an instrumental guitar album full of melodies, but without a single "guitar solo" on the entire thing.

The idea of making an album of "songs," with a strictly guitar - bass - drums format, doesn't exactly inspire thoughts of innovation or experimentation. In the context of Andre's body of work, however, it's arguably the most unusual recording he's ever released.

Originally coming to guitar from a dual background of classical-musician parents and teenage synthesizer/drum machine cassette recordings, his musical identity has been defined by iconoclastic, experimental work. His previous solo releases and performances have been steeped in digital textures, non-linear structures, and starkly untraditional stylistic moves. His work with real-time sampling/looping technology, in particular, has become a reference and subject for contemporary academic musical research.

So "The Hard Bargain" represents many things: a self-styled experimentalist finding out what he can create using some of the most common tools imaginable. A relentlessly self-critical musician finally giving himself permission to work within the parameters he's deliberately avoided for his entire adult life.

And quite possibly, a newly middle-aged musician playing with the sounds of his suddenly distant youth. It's only half-jokingly that LaFosse refers to "The Hard Bargain" as his "mid-life crisis" album.


released June 12, 2012

Serious thanks: Jody Beth Rosen, Scott Collins, Ted Killian, Eric Oberthaler, Ken Rosser, Ricky Graham, Phil Clevenger, Petri Lahtinen, Shawn Farley, Mark Reveley.

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Andre LaFosse Los Angeles, California

Andre LaFosse (pronounced "ON-draye laugh-OSS") is a guitarist, producer, and chronic deconstructionist tortured (solo) artist. His eclectic, obsessive experiments with gene-splicing his own musical DNA have won him acclaim, controversy, and more than a few puzzled looks from his listeners. ... more

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