The Great War in Flanders is like a landmark. More then the millions of death, the profound changes in the foundations of future Europe and the intense human sacrifices, both here and elsewhere, is the Ypres Salient and the Westhoek a wounded place in the Flemish landscape and our hearts. The scars are clearly visible to the naked eye, the stories and hurt linger on in generations to come.
Les Voix Perdues will honor those memories and the quest for peace everywhere, in his music, harmony and respectful arrangements. After all, this was ‘our’ war too, and we believe that things of beauty can, in time, heal some of the hurt.
We do hear it a lot: “why do you guys always sing about the Great War? Why not a bit more … loosen?” Because the right opportunity presented itself in the right moment. At the end of the last century the city of Antwerp organized a Peace Concert, and were in need of a strong vocal group to perform a few songs from the Great War. We had nearly begun singing together, and as a brand new music formation we embraced those songs, and learned to perform them with passion and empathy. The comments after that concert were that encouraging that we found our true calling in music. We would make music about the Great War, in all it’s tormented beauty and splendor. We kept singing the lighthearted pop music, but we lost our hearts in the music about the Great War.
But there you are, as an Antwerp Vocal Group. We were lost sheep, far away from the Ypres Salient and long before the Centenary. Limited media attention, few performing opportunities for our very narrow branch of music, a small but devoted fan base. It became 15 years of patiently waiting and working, shaping the fabric of our songs, our reputation and experience, waiting for the year 2014. And along the way, we were picked up by some concert promoters and media. We began to find our way in the Ypres Salient and Westhoek, and started to appear on the big stages, like Ten Vrede Festival at Diksmuide.
We have always been, as a vocal group, a vivid harmony of people and spirit. Never afraid to be moved by stories or music, never afraid of a challenge. And so, within the vocal group and outside of it, Bart began exploring the boundaries of his creativity. He wrote music, arranged music by others, used his experience in direction plays and movies to form our own shows and in producing his own play about the War. We contributed, as a group, in guided trips to the Ypres Salient, shows with poetry and movies… We are so ready for the centenary!
It took us a while, waiting for the right time, but at the end of 2012 we started the preproduction of our full CD ‘This Blasted War / Stomme Oorlog’. At Quest4 Studios we recorded our guide tracks, under supervision of Daniel Bal (producer) and Kristien Vercammen (vocal coaching). Honest work, no tricks, all sweat and effort, those were our basic ingredients. Based on those recordings we went to ACE Studios, and with the help of Frank Van Bogaert and Guido Maes (engineering) we recorded the final versions. Post production was again of Daniel Bal, who shaped a very powerful and honest piece of music. If you add the graphic splendor of Davide Pascutti, a talented Italian graphic designer and cartoonist, then you know we are very proud to present you our CD, a display of professional and artistic value.