Friday, 27 July 2012

France: Le Candidat

A song and a video lesson in European political history from the ambitiously-named electro act France.

The band, Henning Specht, François Remigi and Pierre Gastou had the idea for a French themed band, singing in French, and the name for the project quickly followed.

The band says: "France is a unique mixture of pulsating Italo Disco, revisited French Touch and synth-driven Chanson, where romanticism and dry wit collide."

There's a cool retro feel to their work, and more than a touch of the Kraftwerk to their soundscape. While a melodic and apparently simple piece, there's a melancholy and ambiguity that underscores their apparent modernism.

Somehow the archive images work well in the video, you feel they should be more familiar with the faces and events than you actually are.

There's a distance and a strangeness to it. You feel the vintage images should elicit a feeling of nostalgia, but you are excluded from it by not being French.

Of course, that response is essentially that of a non-French native of the UK, where we are more familiar with images of previous American presidents than we are with those of our neighbours.

Meanwhile, the use of stills conjures images of videos that actually were from the 80s, when production was at a minimum and any budget was an afterthought. In this case it works, and like the best videos, it's a simple idea that has been done well.

I'd also whoheartedly recommend the second track of their EP, Patrouille de France, a great piece of atmospheric rhythmic electro. All we need for that is a video of some vintage French air force jets and it will be perfect.

The band's debut release, the four-track Grand Tour EP was released in January last year.

Their tracks are available to download from their website here >

No comments:

Post a Comment