Couleurs Noires (1999) is a series of variations with extremely different characters on a sequence of eight chords presented from the outset in long values, first in three and then in four voices.
These chords can be analysed individually as tones, but in succession they lose their harmonic function in the classical sense of the term because it is impossible to determine a specific key or modality. In “suspended function”, their interest lies in their intrinsic beauty as well as in the changes of colour and atmosphere that surprise the listener. Instrumental timbres, by exploiting various particular effects and mixing them, are the subject of subtle and thorough research that is an integral part of musical discourse. The roles of upper, intermediate or low voice are constantly shifted from one cello to another so as not to give preponderance to a particular instrumentalist, which “spatializes” certain passages much more.