Programmed by Jean-Philippe Desrochers
Here Is What Is is a sonic journey to the source of the art in the recording studio. It is an invitation to experience a year of creation, looking over Daniel Lanois’ shoulder. The songs featured throughout the film are true to the dedication of verite, documenting a take, live off the floor. It is a film made with the same heart and soul that every Lanois sonic project receives.
A word from Tënk
Daniel Lanois, the accomplished Hull-born Québec musician behind several popular albums, has been working in the music industry since the late 1970s. Here Is What Is is his first major film offering created with videographer Adam Vollick, with whom he continues to work today. The film depicts Lanois’ return to songwriting after the series of sound experiments—which he has every intention of continuing, by the way—that formed his 2005 instrumental album Belladonna.
Surrounded by extraordinary musicians, including drummer Brian Blade, Lanois is mainly filmed in action in the studio, either behind the mixing console (which he considers a musical instrument in itself) or his pedal steel guitar. Outside the studio walls, he develops a series of profound reflections on art and beauty with his friend and faithful accomplice Brian Eno. Vollick’s digital camera, lightweight and handheld, sticks close to the musicians as they play. The director’s manipulation of the footage, including changes in colour saturation, adds a psychedelic touch to certain scenes. Here Is What Is celebrates all the sensuality of sound, bodies, and images in movement, the ecstasy that comes from creative acts, and the beauty of musical gestures.