Franck MALLET, Le Monde la Musique

“Many other concerts of Musica Festival reflected the variety of contemporary languages. Thus, how can we forget the sound perfection of the band Les Temps Modernes (directed by Fabrice Pierre), in Driftwood and Winter Fragments of Tristan Murail, whose colorful style, based on an exploration of sounds, changing textures and rhythm wave, awakens a sensual and enigmatic world ?”

“Coming from Lyon, the band Les Temps Modernes has - in smaller model - nothing to envy of IRCAM. In the works of Tristan Murail (La Barque mystique and Thirteen colors of the sunset), as in Harmony of the spheres of Allain Gaussin (2006) or Hysos of Giacinto Scelsi (1955), musicians, under precise and free conduction of Fabrice Pierre, demonstrate a breathtaking virtuosity (like among other pianist Wilhem Latchoumia, clarinetist Jean-Louis Bergerard, flutist Michel Lavignolle, violinist Claire Bernard and percusionnist Benoit Poly). In the creation of Jean-Luc Hervé entitled In Motion (a musical reflection on time and its avatars), their concentrated and mineral interpretation is an orchestral dimension.”

Eric Taver, La Lettre du Musicien

"With or without voices, four pieces of chamber music were played. No eccentric or dramatic movements interfered with the listening to music. Seduction could come as music: a program to take or leave. I bet that Talea of Gérard Grisey wich development process is rather complex, could confuse some listeners. Conversely, the Frederico's little songs of George Crumb have certainly gathered all the votes, especially the soprano Elizabeth Grard who has admirably sang the intricacies of Lorca prosody revisited by the American composer. This program was uncompromising and the perfect image of a demanding band with himself as with his audience: successful bet on that evening. "

D.D., Diapason

«The concert given by the Temps Modernes ensemble (broadcast at 10 o'clock) starts with a work by Tristan Murail. We no longer hear his refined work often since he left France to teach in the United States. But the extraordinary Ligeti Trio of horn, violin and piano may be winning the contest. The recent death of the Hungarian composer adds an extra dimension to this visionary work.

Gérard Condé, Le Monde.

«The concert offered by the Temps Modernes took place in an atmosphere of serene sweetness.[…] The group led by Fabrice Pierre played with tact and discretion, inspiring the listener to dream, born along by the current.»

Franck Mallett, Le Monde de la Musique.

«Many other concerts of Musica offer us the variety of contemporary music. How can we not remember the perfect sound of the Temps Moderne ensemble, directed by Fabrice Pierre, in Bois Flotté and Winter Fragments of Tristan Murail, with its colorful style, based on an exploration of sound, changing textures, and an undulating rhythm, which all evoke an enigmatic and sensual world."

Pablo Galonce, Le Monde de la Musique

“Winter Fragments of Murail, here in its global first performance, demonstrates the mastery of the composer in the arrangement of his harmonies. The crystalline sparkle, the rays of sun reflected by the snow evoked in the title, the limpidity of design, are all shown to their best by the virtuoso performance of the musicians of Temps Modernes."

Philippe Andriot, Le Tout Lyon

«The City of Lyon was pleased to give solid official support to an ensemble like Temps Modernes (City Hall November 15). The concert launched the season at City Hall and show-cased this group of hand-picked performers before a large audience made up mostly of young people, proof of the appeal of the group. The diversity of the styles on offer demonstrate the requirements of the organizers directed by the clarinetist Jean-Louis Bergerard. We were offered a sampling of recent tendencies. There was the Chinese Wen Deqing, who was a revelation fifteen years ago with his first opera at the Amadeus Festival of Geneva, here with a more or less contemporary work, Le Souffle. There was a new score crowning a cycle already well-known to the public, Sarn IX, of Pascal de Montaigne. Then a pleasing piece from Ivan Fedele, Aiscrim, and the established classic Nachtgesang of Philippe Hersant, with both the Germanic culture of the composer and his strong attraction for a timeless lyricism. And finally the planetary reveries of Alain Gaussin in his Harmonie des sphères. All the performers were excellent and we cannot name each one. However we must mention the constant presence and demonic manner of the pianist Wilhem Latchoumia. »

Michèle Tosi, ResMusica

« The Lyon ensemble, Temps Modernes, promoting today's music for nearly twenty years, was the second evening, directed by Fabrice Pierre who is also the harpist. The program was not only rich but also coherent. It included a global first, two pieces by Tristan Murail, scored for the same group, the so-called « Pierrot Lunaire » (flute, clarinet, violin, violoncello, piano). It plunged us into a very slow time which was always coming, where the living and vibrant demonstrated the subtle degradation of colours. Treize couleurs du soleil couchant (1978) was a play on the progressive change of sound complexes as a meditation in mouvement, both fragile and ephemeral. The mystical barge, taking its title from the canvas of Odilon Redon, is just as captivating and mysterious under the firm baton of Fabrice Pierre and the fluidity of the «pianoresonance» of Wilhem Latchoumia. After Hysos for flute and percussion of Giacinto Scelsi – hommage to the first « explorer of sound » - Temps Modernes played L’Harmonie des Sphères of Allain Gaussin, striking because of its trajectory through space in sounds almost mineral in nature. La facture experte plays with the alchemy of timbre and the fluctuations of timing, keeping the listener captive to the last vibrating measures, as dragged down into a black hole. Time was also in question with all its different qualities, in the creation of Jean-Luc Hervé, En mouvement. Ludique, inventive and of a galvanizing energy which took over the six interpreters, the composer offers us a voyage on a flying carpet, at different speeds and shaken by some air pockets, mixing humor and captivating us."

Michel Parouty, Les Echos

« With a trio for horn, violin and piano by Ligeti, with the trim but devilishly difficult « Sonata pour flûte et piano » of Michel Reverdy, the Lyon variable geometry ensemble, Temps Modernes put its best foot forward in the composer's presence for the global first of part of « Portulan » by Tristan Murail, a unique and fascinating voyage for different instrumental and sound groupings, which is a real invitation to dream. »

Dominique DUBREUIL, Plumart

« … The merging of sound waves from computers and ancient musical instruments (piano, strings, clarinet, flute, trombone) is done with refinement and rends justice to the musical treatment of Tristan Murail, in permanent contact with the visual side. […] The ensemble is led in magnificent style by Fabrice Pierre, a success which is a tribute to the rigorous discipline of the Temps Modernes ensemble.


Established in France since 1958, Ton-That Tiêt has always remained faithful to his roots in Vietnam. The remarkable and original result is that he has composed music conforming to the esthetic criteria of the western post-Weberian avant-garde. Long melodic intervals. Instrumental tension. Outbursts of sound. Intentional dissonances. Everything is present. But even so he takes the listener into his very own world, sharp, brilliant, with its characteristic crystalline transparency. Long holds, that he uses advisedly, structured repeats, his acoustic quality leads to rewarding listening. Ton-That Tiêt has a rare sense of resonance, a rare eloquence, he excels at creating and maintaining an atmosphere. His "jardins d’autre monde" (1987, for harp and small ensemble) evokes the palace-tombs of four emperors. One is austere and majestic. Another geometric and mystic. The third almost featureless. And the final a garden full of the life of the hereafter. No direct description. Only the equivalent in music to stimulate the imagination. The string trio does not do as much justice to the composer. "Et le rivière chante l’éternité" (2000) is very personal, almost academic. But that is not the case of "Poèmes" (2004). Inspired by the aphorisms of Li Po, this work for flute, alto, harp and three traditional musicians (voice, lute and tambourine), pre-recorded, is designed to reaffirm the communion of man with nature. It does this through the harmonious fusion of the two cultures. While conserving their own character, they still become part of each other in a rewarding manner.This is a technically demanding, deeply scored, music that requires impeccable interpreters who are in phase with its metaphysical dimension.


Gérard Condé, DIAPASON

"The Temps Modernes Ensemble under the taoïste direction of Fabrice Pierre, is indeed very close to the ideal. And the recording adds an appreciable presence"

Pierre Gervasoni, Le Monde

"For forty years many composers have tried to bring together Orient and Occident. There are few like Ton-That Tiêt, born in 1933,who succeed in a sober manner. Strong with Asian spirituality, this French citizen from Vietman has developed a personal style of expression which is above all music which wears no labels, pungent and unusual. It eclodes, it is born (outbursts of the first harp from gardens of other worlds, ripples for the string trio,the river that sings eternity, with a remarkably sure touch. Covering almost two decades, the program recorded by the Temps Modernes ensemble reveals to us its Vietnam origins slowly coming up to the surface."

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Diapason, avril 2007 – 5 diapasons


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Le Monde, mardi 17 avril 2007