If the name Seb Martel is still unknown to you, the guitarist appears on the credits of classic albums from Tony Allen, Femi Kuti, or Blackalicious. Saturn 63, his new album on InFiné is dedicated to the exploration of the electric guitar in all its nuances. This new opus made from a selection of 9 guitars from the Musée de la Musique (a branch of the Philharmonie de Paris), and only enriched with the voices of his close collaborators (Camille, Sabrina Bellaouel, Vic Moan, Cindy Pooch…), unfolds on fourteen tracks a musical fresco faithful to the historical and geographical heritage of his instrument.
Saturn 63 includes fascinating reworks of Carl Perkins, Benjamin Britten, Chavela Vargas or Vincent Segal in addition to his own compositions. However, adopting a dogmatic approach, and dressing his compositions with sounds and effects collected during the recordings, Martel offers an abstract and experimental edge to Saturn 63, which transports the listener into an out of time experience. Two famous names of the French Chanson, -M- and Mathieu Boogaerts joined Martel to close the album with the snapshot of a speechless improvised session. Below is an introduction to the album courtesy of Martel.
Today Seb Martel has released the single “Seventy (feat. Sabrina Bellaouel).” The track was born from Martel’s experiments and recording sessions in the basement guitar vaults of the Philharmonie de Paris. Based loosely on Martel’s vast experience as an amateur cyclist, the track is about putting one foot in front of the other (or one pedal over the other), but feeling like you are stuck. The composition and production, which was incepted during Seb’s initial experimentation phase during his sessions in La Reserve of Musée de la Musique, mirrors this thematic concept as well; a slow, sludgy dirge that fills the listener with a sense of struggle to move forward. Interestingly, the production process began to mimic this lyrical concept as well, and as time rolled on the track became more and more difficult to finish. It was at this point that Sabrina Bellaouel’s effortless vocal harmonies (which were written and recorded overnight) graced the track and were able to carry it over the finish line.