Harmonium Goes Symphonic After 44 Years!

And, now imagine this timeless music performed by 68 musicians of the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal (OSM), conducted by Maestro Leclerc, and you get Histoires sans paroles – Harmonium symphonique co-produced by Serge Fiori and Simon Leclerc, under the artistic direction of Nicolas Lemieux, president of GSI Musique.

The first project from the fabled Harmonium since the release of L’Heptade 44 years ago, the symphonic performance of Histoires sans paroles, totalling more than 140 minutes, is more than simple orchestral interpretations. It’s a reworking of the songs revealing the compositions in a whole new light. The exquisite flavour, the subtlety and the multiple layers offered by this instrumental work invite each listener to imagine their own new stories of what for many had become part of the soundtrack of their life.

Harmonium - Histoiries sans paroles Covey by: Jean Paul Riopelle, Le Jacob-Chatou , 1954 / Oil on canvas , 200.6 x 300 cm © Succession Jean Paul Riopelle / SOCAN (2020)
Harmonium – Histoiries sans paroles – Artwork by: Jean Paul Riopelle, Le Jacob-Chatou , 1954 / Oil on canvas , 200.6 x 300 cm   © Succession Jean Paul Riopelle / SOCAN (2020)

Harmonium is one of the most influential bands in Quebec music history and their success reached across North America as the sound of progressive rock came to characterize the 1970’s music scene. The success of their three albums HarmoniumSi on avait besoin d’une cinquième saison and L’Heptade and the single Pour un instant resulted in an invitation to Los Angeles, where the National Film Board of Canada filmed Harmonium en Californie. In 2015, Rolling Stone magazine listed Si on avait besoin d’une cinquième saison at number 36 of the Best 50 Progressive Rock Albums and declared it the Best Progressive Folk Album. In 2007, all three of Harmonium’s studio albums were named among the 100 greatest Canadian albums of all time in Bob Mersereau’s book The Top 100 Canadian Albums. The influence they had on the sound of Quebec music was immense and still resonates.

Histoires sans paroles will be available on December 3rd, exclusively at in the following formats: digital version; boxed set containing two CDs and a booklet illustrated with photos taken during the recording at the Maison Symphonique, in Serge Fiori’s presence; boxed set containing four vinyl albums and a booklet consisting of extensive texts and a wide selection of pictures commemorating this very unique moment.

Pre-orders of Histoires sans paroles can now be placed at where fans can also hear the first excerpt of what will certainly become a time-defining masterpiece, the song Harmonium.

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