Mika Vainio & Franck Vigroux - Peau Froide, Léger Soleil

Mika Vainio & Franck Vigroux - Peau Froide, Léger Soleil

Verdict: 4.5/5

Cosmo Rhythmatic




October 2015

Written By

Beatrice Sommer


October 29, 2015

It is beneficial to think that beyond the borders of our defining physical existence, there is an unmanageable energy to which all dimensions known and unknown to us belong. All matter is anything but static and our perception of parts and wholes is a sheer interpretation of the forms that shape the human being. At the center of equilibrium stands the domino effect which endlessly fits pieces together in new, different ways.

The truth is that we do not have the power to destroy equilibrium, but we are constantly at risk of losing our favorable position. We are on a bidirectional route to discovering pieces that are parts of a bigger picture and it seems that the ones that trouble us most are those placed in an unexplored frame. Yet, we are clueless about our very own part in a frame.

“Peau froide, lèger soleil” (''Cold Skin, The Sun's Light'') is the result of a three year recording process initiated by Mika Vainio and Frank Vigroux after a series of shared live experiences. Sprawling after a show in Paris in 2012, their collaboration is an exercise in sensitive intensity, drifting the whole space between minimalist meditations and maximalist kinetics.

The overall feel of the album sends one at the barrier of an environment strictly based on hypothesis, dominated by recurrent appearances and disappearances of parts within structures that, in turns, gain and lose complexity. It is a mixture of different contexts aligning together for undetermined lengths of time, thus inducing a ''fear'' of the unknown onto the listener.

'Souffles' is an outstanding track that best represents the album. It doesn't just bring enormous and tiny spaces to one's focus. It changes one's size to fit what there is to be experienced as if 'following a white rabbit'. Vainio's characteristic harshness can be inevitably noticed in this one and the name meaning 'Blasts' points out his involvement even more. Vigroux's graceful play with resonance and tone is felt throughout the intensely textured 'Man'. This track is about space as much as it is about the deepest places of the oceans, two of man's most profound sources of curiosity. The vocal sample in this one enhances the sense of alienation from our fellow humans, but it creates a metaphysical connection with mediums to which we can not belong since we adapted to a different world.

'Le souterrain' (''The Subterranean'') is also a bridge between the conditions we have adapted to and those of other life forms. This time, the listener undergoes a morbid understanding of the place where 'The Sun's Light' does not find a place to shine, but where 'Cold Skin' ends up. It begins with cosmic frequencies and submarine bleeps, proceeds with muffled, ghastly vocals, sounds that seem to have been reversed as if rewinding bits of time and ends with echoing guitar sounds which are dear to all human ear.

Peau froide, lèger soleil is an album predominantly built on a sonic representation of cold contrasts between inward and outward dimensions of living mechanisms. It serves as the third installment in Cosmo Rhythmatic’s catalog and acts as new chapter in the label’s identity.


A1. Deux
A2. Mémoire
B1. Souffles
B2. Mutant
C1. Ravages
C2. Man
C3. Parabole
D1. Le Souterrain
D2. Le Crâne Tambour

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