In Maxim Cormier’s new video release today his cover of Bach’s Prelude for Lute BWV 999 is both haunting and uplifting. If the opening scene showing vibrant blues, greens, and orange as natural light streams through stained glass in a place of worship, proceeding to Cormier’s outline, his face illuminated by the colour filtered light, isn’t enough to get you shouting hallelujah, then what follows certainly will.
As you watch, the mind and ear disconnect, as it is impossible to comprehend how a person can pick guitar strings as fast as a piano or flute player uses all ten fingers to blend the lingering notes.
While classical guitar players traditionally finger pick nylon strings, this four time winner of Acadian/Francophone Artist of the Year at Nova Scotia Music Week breaks boundaries with a flat pick on a steel string guitar.
Cormier is trained in classical, jazz, and world music with a Bachelor of Music from Dalhousie University in guitar performance. The video is part of his upcoming album, Maxim Cormier plays J.S. Bach. Each song is performed in the same style on a steel string guitar.
There is no room for pause or reflection as the captivating camera angles keep the eye occupied and entranced. Showing perspectives of the guitar neck that we may never see with our own eyes, Cormier’s fingers dance on the frets, hypnotizing like a cobra dancing to a flute. When it cuts to his picking hand, it takes a second to realize the video isn’t on fast forward.
The camera cuts to the green and yellow stained glass, providing a moment to process what we’re seeing, as the ethereal sounds transplant the mind to simpler time.
The song is part of Cormier’s upcoming release ‘Maxim Cormier Plays J.S. Bach’ where he transforms music originally written for flute, lute, keyboard/voice into something beautifully performed on guitar. He currently has a on PledgeMusic campaign where you can contribute and pre-order the album here.