The first time I saw Lambert wander in his videos, I was sitting on a garden chair. I was bathing in the sun when my eyes saw the picture of this mysterious character. As my computer screen reflects a bit of everything and anything, I came away from extreme light to see more clearly. I was not mistaken, this man was wearing a strange mask. Between the imaginary rabbit of Donnie Darko and an angry Jumanji tribe, would make an unanimity. When you look from afar, you simply ask yourself what’s wrong with him. But what really Lambert emerges is more delicate, less abrupt and pessimistic than the two referenced cities. This is a desired ambivalence and required by it’s author. A satire of this genre that influences his compositions: “The mask is an esthetic tool. I wanted to create a world around Lambert that is against the stereotypes of piano music – like romantic candlelight for example – but also still combines well with the music. The idea of a character from another world has always appealed to me. “
Without breaking the sound of his arpeggios, he has managed to sow a beautiful confusion. However, there is no such confusion where reason is lost. No, the reason is transfixed by the sights and sounds of a work of art. So we see this supernatural animal, a kind of endless horned buffalo, playing the air-piano on the ruins of ancient monument, haunting the silent nature and walking around the dim streets in twilight. “We shot it in Sardinia because the mask is directly inspired by their carnival culture. Tillmann and Niklas, who made the video, are 2 close friends. Together, we have developed for a longtime the visual concept of Lambert. We usually begin shooting early in the morning or at sunset because the light is so special. We did a lot of takes, despite the cold. There are things we have not yet released. It was a beautiful trip.” It is the desolation of a science fiction movie, an exquisite phantasmagoria in the wake of a brilliant pianist and a bit random – like any good artist: « I grew up in northern Germany. I started taking piano lessons early at 4 or 5 years old I think. Growing up, I was attracted by the drums and then I started playing in punk and funk groups which allowed me to abuse my instrument. Later I focused on the piano and studied at music school: a little jazz, a little classical, but nothing really turned me on. It took me some time to rediscover the piano, find my own style and the right way to play. »
In his musical career, he says he loves Chopin as much as Vampire Weekend, and has a weakness for composer Jan Johansson. His first album, which includes twenty soft compositions is the culmination of a lengthy reflection and a deep love for music. His tunes link together the ups and downs, joys and sorrows, that stray among bipolar chords. In charge is one who needs no introduction, Nils Frahm: “We have friends in common. I met him once at a party. I had listened to some of his work, which I love, and at this time I did not know he was a big star. Yet I knew he was the right person to ask for advice. So I talked to him about my ideas and asked him if he wanted to help me produce the album. One thing lead to another, after finishing producing the album, I showed him the result. He was excited straight away and decided to take care of the mixing and mastering. It was great because I could also see how he worked. “
Do not be fooled by these musical moods. Lambert blew me away: “I am a happy man!” !
© Julien Catala