O, Monde aveugle!

— Songs for the Apocalypse (2010)

Zefiro Torna

Our time can be considered as a converging and ending point of numerous time cycles. The Mayan calendar as well as the biblical and the alchemist’s one point 2012 out as the year of the Apocalypse and the time of prophecies.

‘O, Monde aveugle’ depicts man in his blind fear of the unknown, confronted with a profound sense of moral turmoil. The beast in man is revealed and his destructive nature surfaces, he is lead by the uncanny comical and obscene. The confrontation with his self sets off a shift of consciousness, a transformation leading to a new age, with an exit towards new energies.

Together with their fellows from the internationally acclaimed crossover project ‘Les Tisserands’, Zefiro Torna creates a band pondering this theme in a way reminiscent of the satires in Jeroen Bosch’s Renaissance paintings. A variety of old, modern, and hybrid instruments provide the accompaniment for songs that are sometimes striking and on other moments conveying purifying thoughts. The music is mainly based on older sources from the Trecento and Renaissance, but also contains compositions for the new age.

The program is made up of ballads, madrigals, lamentation, ‘blasons’ and instrumental music by Jacopo da Bologna, Johannes Ciconia, Cristobal de Morales, Clemens non Papa, Cipriano de Rore, Georges Brassens and Jowan Merckx. Els Van Laethem set texts by anonymous Roman poets, Petrarch and Michelangelo to her melodious song lines.

Els Van Laethem soprano, trombone, marine trumpet, compositions
Jowan Merckx flutes, crumhorn, bagpipe, percussion, compositions
Philippe Laloy soprano saxophone, alto crumhorn, bass flute
Gwen Cresens bandoneon
Vincent Noiret double bass
Jurgen De bruyn lutes, artistic direction