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George Lucas said that “The sound and music is 50 % of the entertainment in a movie.” Listening to the cinematic music of Francois Mathian, aka Fransoafran, I get a feeling that I have seen at least 50 % of several movies. His music is storytelling on a grand scale, larger-than-life and memorable. Although Fransoafran only has released nine singles so far, there’s more than enough to establish him as a very promising cinematic music composer. Read on; we even have an exclusive video premiere for you!
Francois was inspired to learn piano and violin at an early age by his mother, who was a violinist and a science professor. After classical training, he toured and recorded as a jazz and rock violinist in multiple French bands (Hoy, Payou Rabalat, Liane Edwards, Trapettistes, Malbonheurs, CKoinC, and Corcovado Trio). Since moving to Australia, he now releases his own music, collaborates with yoga teachers, sound healers, and artists such as Nathan Glass and Sarah Coponat.
“Tyrian Dance” is an electro tango, cuban habanera and classical soundtrack. It is a colorful piece that proves that Fransoafran can take on any genre – and do it well. The melody literally dances in your ears. But don’t take my word for it, check it out for yourself:
“Deliverance” is another highly visual masterpiece! I love the opening; Slowly we hear the orchestra come to life, carefully laying the foundation for the composition. Then suddenly, a melody takes shape. It is a deliverance made with enthusiasm, love and, most importantly, incredible skill. Bravo!
We’ll continue this musical journey with “Hearthside”. First, we hear gentle piano, then violins and cello. An inspired and passionate melody takes shape, and before long we just know that this piece has, to use a cliché, “its heart in the right place”. The composition has the drama and pathos of a Hollywood movie ending; You cannot help being moved. It is the only proper human reaction to such a powerful piece of art. It is grand, yet totally unpretentious.
This journey continues with two contemplative pieces, “Home” and “Chiaroscuro”. “Home” is a collaboration with Sarah Coponat. Piano and strings are always great together, and it captures the essence of a loving and warm home. The piece also seems to underline its vulnerability. I love the somewhat abrupt ending, and how it makes us reflect on what an ending is. A new beginning, perhaps?
“Chiaroscuro” also has a great piano, played by Nathan Glass, but there’s no doubt that the strings are the stars here. It is a short piece, one second shy of two minutes only.
One of Fransoafran’s best compositions is “Immanent”. The piece seems to contain a whole cosmology, from the smallest particles to planets. This larger-than-life storytelling is what Fransoafran does best. Even Vangelis would be proud. The electric violin sounds marvelous, singing the songs of a far-away universe.
“Island Dream”, featuring Thang Tran on Vietnamese Bamboo Flute, is something completely different. It is a gorgeous piece for meditation and relaxation. Notice how different the violin sounds. It sings the song of the island forest, ancient and wise. The sound effects and textures are very well-made, including the nice wind chimes in the end.
After that dreamy piece, “Sky Tribe” is ready to shake up any playlist. It is FAST and contains some truly impressive violin, guitar, and flute segments, all with a colorful ethnic touch. Underneath it all is a rich selection of strings and textures, that paint a vivid picture of the tribe in the sky. And most importantly: it shows Fransoafran’s incredible melodic talent.
“Emergence” is another winner. I like how it develops, or emerges if you will. From the gentle intro rises a bold composition with many layers of strings. The finale is unforgettable, a true tour de force.
In conclusion: The works of Fransoafran take soundtracks to a new level. Even though there are no movie yet, his music tells a story of its own.
Listen to the pieces “Deliverance”, “Emergence” and “Immanent” and you’ll feel that you – according to the above quote by George Lucas – have seen at least 50 % of several movies. That is a major accomplishment.
Check out all Fransoafran’s music on Spotify here.
For more information and music samples, see soulbow.com