At the simplest of levels, Carole Sabouraud is a composer, songwriter and music producer. But after listening to her new epic trailer music album Suture–a debut release under her given name–and you’ll soon realize she’s much more than that. Some titles that may come to mind are “Sonic World Creator” or “Vibe Astronaut” or even “Sound Design Conjurer” for the talented Los Angeles based musician.
With inspiration and experiences that span the globe, Sabouraud has a bevy of left-field inspiration and influence and properly utilizes an experimental and fearless creative mind to connect all the musical dots together into a succinct thrill ride.
Sabouraud, who was born in France, grew up in Spain, and now resides in Los Angeles, somehow literally stitches sounds together on Suture that should theoretically never be used with one another. Yet Sabouraud concocts a rollercoaster of tension, release, joy, horror, and excitement with exceptional sound design techniques. She gives you just enough familiar moments of melodic respite to feel momentarily grounded–but these moments never last long. Suture is not for the faint of heart, and should be listened to by adventurous listeners that want to be surprised and shocked, in the best way possible.
For example, on the track “Missing Tomorrow”, Sabouraud uses (what sounds like) an omni-present muted machine gun fire with epic string chords and melodic electronic rises to create a hyperactive pulsating rhythmic journey that is somehow both scary and liberating to listen to. An orchestral electronic hybrid experience unlike a lot of the other epic trailer music out today.
In the most literal sense, “Sutures” are what mend deep bloody wounds by threading sterile fabric thread through the skin. The look of sutures on a wound look vampiric and often painful, but a skilled doctor can use stitches to make wounds heal cleanly. In a sense, Sabouraud's music is akin to what the healing process of sutures physically provide. Her music sounds like what a single stitch must experience as it’s being threaded between skin, flesh, hair, and microscopic cells as it tightens the outer skin around a hefty wound. The music is tight like skin, in which every layer has a dedicated place in the overall mix and the sounds react to one another in unique ways that make sense, but it’s also very loose and liquid-y like dripping blood, with sounds that often dribble and flow onto, over, and around themselves to paint a cosmic puddle of electronically-generated sound-waves.
While Sabouraud uses a lot of unrecognizable sounds and instruments, she manages to weave a natural element into Sutures too. By cleverly warping and mutating human voices, Sabouraud creates hauntingly gorgeous textures and eerily pleasant moments. Furthermore, she surgically uses contemporary electronic musical plug-ins and elements to build a spooky, futuristic, and ethereal environment for her sound design and organic notes to bounce off of.
Listen on headphones or a good stereo and you’ll hear an onslaught of hyperactive panning and reverb, giving Suture a feeling of immense space and depth. At one moment you’ll feel like you’re in a spacecraft as you calmly observing the beautiful colors of the solar system and stars around you, then without warning you will be yanked by an asteroid of loud toms and saw-wave FM synthesis as it hit crashes over you and your proverbial spacecraft gets shot down by synth pads, powerful industrial percussion, fuzzy guitars, and glitchy analog sound processing.
In addition to Sutures, Carole has released music under the moniker Edith Crash, which still skews more experimental but is more geared to traditional forms of singer-songwriter and ambient folk music. Edith Crash was included in the 2016 NPR’s list of favorite SXSW discoveries, where it was described as “very dark and strange, complemented by (Sabouraud’s) sultry voice.” Carole’s uniquely cinematic quality to her music comes in full-bodied melodies, dramatic vocal delivery, and a penchant for dark folk drama.
Sabouraud’s work as Edith Crash reveals a whole other mysterious side of Carole that leaves us asking even more questions about this multi-cultural and seemingly ever-expanding musical talent. Like the boundless universe, there’s no containing Sabouraud’s creativity and we’re here for whatever dimension she takes us to next.