Friday, 31 October 2014

David Guetta: Dangerous

A new clip by David Guetta, for the song Dangerous,  ahead of the release of his new album later this

Guetta's last album, 2011's Nothing but the beat, sold so many copies I suspect the French president is hoping the new album sells enough to turn around France's economy.

 It's probably not impossible, give the international success of Nothing but the beat. Just about every song on the various versions of the album went on to be hits.

The new clip sees Guetta as a Formula One driver, and is directed by Jonas Akerlund who has directed videos for the likes of Madonna and he Rolling Stones, as well as Paul McCartney, Lady Gaga and Britney Spears.

He's also the former drummer with metal legends Bathory.

The new Guetta track features Sam Martin on vocals

The new single follows first track from the new album, Lovers on the sun, a sing that reached number one in the UK.

The new album, to be titled Listen, is available from November 24.

M Pokora: On Danse

A new single from M Pokora, pop star veteran of the Popstars TV reality show in 2003 and jury
member of current series of TV show Danse avec les stars.

The track On Danse comes ahead of Pokora's sixth album R.E. D., which comes as the latest release in a long solo career that's included a number one single in 2008 with the song Dangerous.

He's had many hits since, the track Envole-moi, his duet with Tal from the Génération Goldman collection reaching the top five.

In 2013 Pokora took on the role of Robin Hood in the stage musical  Robin des Bois, his performances of the songs Le jour qui se rêve and À nous from the soundtrack being released as singles.

Pokora's got an arena tour scheduled next year, and the new album is expected around February.

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Pitchfork Music Festival Paris

Today sees Paris hosting the Pitchfork Music Festival at the Grande halle de la Vilette.

Essentially a showcase for US and elsewhere acts in France, it gives a high-profile European stage for some critically acclaimed acts, and the opportunity to spend three days in Paris with a very well selected live soundtrack.

Scotland is well represented this year, with Belle and Sebastian, Mogwai and Chvrches.  Also on the bill are Caribou, James Blake, Jamie XX, St Vincent and Jungle and many others.

Some of the sets are being streamed live by Culturebox this year, so it's possible to catch many of the acts at the event digitally.

Friday, 24 October 2014

Murat: J'ai fréquenté la beauté

I missed covering the release of the video for the song J'ai fréquenté la beauté  by Murat when it
came out last month, so time to put this right with the release of the album that it featured on.

The song comes from his album Babel, which sees the singer woking with French band The Delano Orchestra, a group who specialise in a folk-flavoured sound .

It follows Murat's 2013 Toboggan album.

The Delano Orchestra come from the same area of France as Murat, their shared musical heritage and love of their locality shining through in the video.

I've always loved Murat's voice and his new release sees it in as fine form as ever. It's a double album, and I'm looking forward to giving it a listen some time in the next couple of weeks.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Nolwenn Leroy: Ophélia

A live track version of the  Nolwenn Leroy track Ophélia has been released as a teaser for her
forthcoming live collection Ô Tour De L’eau.

The album, described as a 'best of live' features a show that was recorded at Saint Brieuc at the end of January this year.

A variety of editions are being made available,  download, double CD, Blu Ray or DVD or a collection including the two audio discs and DVD. The video includes bonus clips and an acoustic session.

For a singer whose career began with TV show Star Academy in 2002 she's gone on to have a hugely successful career, her most recent studio album - her fifth - Ô Filles de l'Eau reaching the top five in France in 2012.

The live collection captures one of the 67 shows she gave supporting the album's release in France, Switzerland and Belgium.

She's announced that another tour, this time an acoustic one, will get under way next year, with shows in March, April and May.

The new live album is released in France on December 1.

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Détroit: Le creux de ta main (La Cigale)

A video has been released as a teaser ahead of the new Détroit live collection La Cigale.

The release comes as a double CD and DVD chronicling a live performance by Bertrand Cantat and company at the famous Paris venue in June this year.

Their Horizons debut release was met with considerable critical and commercial success, the controversy surrounding former Noir Désir vocalist (and convicted killer)  Bertrand Cantat notwithstanding.

Of  the songs on the Détroit album, le creux de ta main probably the one that comes closest to the sound of Noir Désir, an earlier clip from the live release featuring a version of the Noir Dés classic Tostaky.

Détroit have been playing live extensively since the release of their debut, and play across France in November and December, with a gig at the Zénith in Paris on December 3

The live release comes out on November 3.

Irma: Acoustic

I've missed a couple recently, but I'm catching up with the latest editions of Acoustic, the music
programme on TV5Monde.

This week featured French-based Cameroonian singer Irma. She released her debt album Letter to the Lord in 2011, the album getting into the top ten in France and becoming a platinum seller.

She initially got attention through posting videos of her performing on YouTube,

The following year she was nominated for best French act at the 2012 MTV Europe Music Awards and was nominated for breakthough artist at the Victoires de la musique awards.

She recently released her second album, entitled Faces, earlier this year.

The episode of Acoustic features her performing Save me,  Hear me out, Street lights Catch the wind and Train.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

The Dø: Despair, Hangover and Ecstasy

A new video from The Dø, for the song Despair, Hangover and Ecstasy comes from their third album
Shake Shook Shaken.

The French/Finnish duo of Olivia Merilahti and Dan Levy have been active since 2005, their 2008 debut album A Mouthful reaching number one in France.

The release made them the first French act performing in English to reach that position.

The single is  another sophisticated slice of electro pop from their long-awaited recent album.
Shake Shook Shaken gets a release in the US and UK on January 27th.

Before then they've got extensive live dates in France, and play in Paris at La Cigale on November 19.

They've also got a date in London at the Village Underground on November 3.

Frànçois & the Atlas Mountains: Fancy Foresight

A memorable new video by Frànçois & the Atlas Mountains for the track Fancy Foresight.

The video was directed and hand-painted by Frànçois, so I guess that makes it a genuine work of art.

The song comes from their Piano Ombre album, wich was released in March this year. In the months since the album's revealed itself to be one of this year's finest releases.

The new video is a tasteful and imaginative visual imagining of the song.

They're touring in November and December across France, with a show at the Bataclan in Paris on 18 Nov.

Frànçois & the Atlas Mountains also play at the Scale in London on November 11.

Monday, 20 October 2014

NRJ Music Awards 2014: Pre-shortlist

Details have been announced of the first phase of this year's NRJ Music Awards, with a vote to
determine who gets onto the shortlist for the awards.

The first phase is one of pre-nominations, where a field of six is announced. A public vote until November 2 reduces each category to the four final nominations, the final winners announced on December 13.

Many of the biggest international names are included, but there's also a significant francophone presence across the ten categories.

The categories are:

Female Francophone artist of the year: Joyce Jonathan, Maude, Shy'm, Tal, Vanessa Paradis and Zaz

Male Francophone artist of the year: Calogero, David Guetta, Julien Doré, Keen V, M Pokora and Stromae

Francophone breakthrough of the year: Black M, David Carreira, Fréro Delavega, Indila, Kendji Girac, Lilly Wood and the Prick

Francophone Group/Duo or Collective of the year: Daft Pumk, Forever Gentlemen, Indochine, Kyo, Magic System and Shaka Ponk

International Breakthrough of the Year: Aloe Blacc, Ariana Grande, Iggy Azalea, London Grammar, Milky Chance and Sam Smith

International female artist of the year: Beyonce, Katy Perry, Nicki Minaj, Shakira, Sia and Taylor Swift

International Male artist of the year: Avicii, Ed Sheeran, Jason Derulo, Lenny Kravitz, Pharell Williams and Pitbull

International group of Duo: Coldplay, Imagine Dragons, Maroon 5, One Direction, Onerepublic and U2

International song: Ariana Grande - Problem, Coldplay - A sky full of stars,  Michael Jackson and Justin Timberlake - Love never felt so good, Pharrell Williams - Happy, Pitbull fet Jennifer Lopez - We are one  and Sia - Chandelier

Clip of the year: Black M - Mme Pavoshko, David Guetta - Lovers on the sun, Nicki Minaj - Anaconda, Katy Perry - Dark Horse, Pharell Williams - Happy and Stromae - Ta fete

Superets: Le sang, l'argent

Continuing my look at bands I saw at last year Transmusicales festival in Rennes, I'm pleased to see a  new release by the great Superets, with the song Le sang, l'argent.

The track comes as a digital EP with the song Grand Canyon.

Their 160 Caractères Pour Te Dire Adieu song was one of my favourite form last year, the band's yéyétronique style an infectious and likable sound, and  they're a great live act.

Veuve Mécanique followed it up in style in April, the new track continues the band's campaign to conquer the world armed only with superior  quality French pop.

UPDATE: The video is now available to watch worldwide, so it's now available to watch below.

Superets play at the Boule Noir in Paris on November 4.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Dead: Verse

Last year's Transmusicales festival in Rennes gave me the chance to catch a huge number of new acts  for the first time, and it's been a pleasure to keep up with what they've been doing since.

Dead were one band I got the opportunity to see live, having already heard some of their work, and it was great to see the release of a new four track EP by the Rennes-based trio entitled Verse at the end of last month.

Writing in the aftermath of the show last year, I said they had  "Echoes of late 80s post-industrial electronic dance acts like Front 242 or Nitzer Ebb" and how there might be some references to The Sisters of Mercy, they sounded like the kind of band that the Sisters of Mercy probably wish they were today.

"Their music might well be no stranger to the sounds of the dancefloor of a punk night at a student union in the late 80s, but Dead are very much a product of the 2010s musical environment" , I said at the time, and this EP shows the band taking some of the inspiration from that scene and dragging it into the 21st century.

The new material on the Verse EP on KdB records is as intense a piece of dark electronic rock as you could hope for, dense and unashamedly epic in its scale.  I want to listen to this at a ridiculous volume, with dry ice in the air, strobe lighting and a pint of cider and blackcurrant in hand.

Dead play the Bus Palladium in Paris on October 10 and at the 1988 club in Rennes on October 11.

Mission Control: The Rising

A new video for singer David Hallyday, a comeback of sorts with the track The Rising by his band Mission Control.

Hallyday's last solo album was his  Un nouveau monde collection from four years ago. He's had a long career since his 1988 album True Cool. He's also pursued his interest in motor racing.

David Hallyday is of course the son of Johnny Hallyday and Sylvie Vartan, and while that heritage no doubt opened a few doors for him over the years, being the family of a superstar is no guarantee of success - and maintaining a career over several decades makes a strong case that David Hallyday has talent very much his own.

But this new release sees the family name taken down and a new brand - and a new band - on the front.

The new release features Hallyday as part of a band - Mission Control - that also features Olivier Frèche, Fabrice Ach et Alexis Hadefi.

The track  has a more modern sound than you would perhaps expect from Hallyday, with a strong electro feel to it. Mission Control will no doubt appeal to a lot of people who probably wouldn't even have considered listening to David Hallyday's solo work.

The video was directed by David Tomaszewski, a French director who has worked with the likes of rapper  Orelsan as well as the hip hop duo Casseurs Flowters that features Orelsan.

The song comes from the forthcoming album, entitled Alive, which is due to be released on Novermber 10.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Pharrell Williams and Daft Punk: Gust of wind clip

An addendum to yesterday's post about the new Pharrell Williams /  Daft Punk video, with the full video coming out today.

The Daft Punk boys make a low key appearance in the video, their legendary status apparently secured literally with the stone icons.

The track was co-written between Pharrell and  Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter from Daft Punk.

It appeared on Pharrell's G.I.R.L. album.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Pharrell Williams: Gust of Wind [feat. Daft Punk]

A teaser today for  new video by Pharrell Williams featuring Daft Punk, for the track Gust of Wind.

Will it match the success of last year's collaboration?

Uncertain as let's be honest, Randon Access Memories was quite a special moment for both these artists and the others involved, so it might be a case of hoping lighting strikes twice.

But certainly the odds are good, and both Daft Punk and Pharrell are at the peak of their game at the moment so it's without a doubt possible.

Until the full release, an brief teaser video has emerged.

Monday, 6 October 2014

Carla Bruni: Quelqu'un m'a dit

A new video and single by Carla Bruni ahead of the release of a live DVD/CD later this month.

The track Quelqu'un m'a dit comes from her forthcoming à l'Olympia set, which was recorded in March this year.

The show followed the release of her Little French Songs album in 2013, and the forthcoming live album features some of tracks form this collection, as well as interpretations of some  of her earlier work.

Quelqu'un m'a dit originally featured as the title track on her 2002 debut album.

 Other work on the new live album includes a cover of John Prine's All the best, performed as a duet with Marianne Faithful.

The set will also include a 20 minute documentary covering her tour in the USA.

Bruni is reported to be working on her fifth studio album, with a release likely some time in 2015.

Saturday, 4 October 2014

Review: Moodoïd - Le Monde Möö

I've been looking forward to the realease of Moodoïd's debut album Le Monde Möö for a while, since
I first heard their Je Suis la Montagne single last year, and it's with some pleasure that I can report it's lived up to expectations.

Psychedelic? Of course. And with  patchoiuli scent of progressive rock somewhere in the mix, but Moodoïd aren't just trying to recreate an interesting musical cul de sac from decades past.

Instead they take one of music's more experimental and fertile times as their starting ground and apply the open-minded musical attitudes of that scene to create something very much their own.

It's a rich and heady brew, and the kind of release that will inevitably reward repeated listening.

 There's a pop base  - it's not a heavy trip or a pastoral meander - but more the sound of a classic pop band pushing the boundaries and seeing where it takes them.

The world of Moodoïd certainly is an interesting place, inhabited by strange and colourful creatures and unfamiliar landscapes.

Well worth a visit.

Friday, 3 October 2014

Johnny Hallyday: Rester Vivant tour

Tour dates have been announced for the French music legend that is Johnny Hallyday, with shows to
promote his forthcoming Rester Vivant album.

Rester Vivant comes out in November, his first studio album since the massive success of his 2012 L’Attente album.

True, most of his studio albums in recent hears have reached number one, but L'Attente, which saw him work with Christophe Miossec  was a particularly strong commercial and critical hit.

His two subsequent live albums, On Stage which covered his L'Attente tour and Born Rocker Tour which  showcased his 70th birthday gigs in Paris both reached the top three in France.

With the new collection almost upon us, Johnny has announced some extensive tour dates to support it, beginning next year and into 2016.

The tour begins in Nimes on July 2, and there are three nights at Bercy in Paris in November. There are shows at the Francofolies de la Rochelle festival, the Sporting Summer Festival in Monaco and at the Big Festival in Biarritz.

Meanwhile, shows are scheduled at the Zénith arenas and stadiums around France.  Shows in Brussels and Geneva are the only gigs outside France so far, his last major tour bringing him to the UK and US among other places.

Before then there are five  (sold out) nights in Bercy next month with Eddie Mitchell and Jacques Dutronc.

Maska: Profiter de ma life

Rapper Maska has released a new single, Profiter de ma life, featuring fellow Sexion d'Assaut
member Black M.

The new track follows the realease of the track Prie pour moi, which featured  Maître Gims, another graduate from the  Sexion d'Assaut academy of major French rap stars.

Both Gims and Black M have enjoyed massive success with their solo releases, Gims' Subliminal album from last year being one of the biggest selling French releases of that year.

The status of Sexion d'Assaut as one of  France's most successful rap act ever is beyond doubt.
Maska featured in last years Les chroniques du Wati Boss compilation from the Wati B label with the track Leve ton verre.

A second volume of the collection was issued last month reaching the top five in the French charts.

Maska's solo album, entitled Espace temp is expected to be released on October 20.

Adrien Gallo: Crocodile

A new video by Adrien Gallo featuring Ella Walmann for the single Crocodile.

Gallo is best known as the singer of BB Brunes, and he released his first solo single Monokini in July this year.

The track comes from Gallo's  first solo album, which features duets with his partner Walmann, entitled Gemini, which comes out on November 3.

The collection is said to be inspired by French pop of the 1980s, artists like Etienne Daho and Jacno.

The last album by BB Brunes was 2012's Long Courier, but Gallo's successful solo career does not apparently suggest the end of the band.

He's worked before on other projects that have seen his songs interpreted by others, with Alizée among those he's written for.

He also wrote two songs on the album Love Songs Vanessa Paradis, including the single Mi Amor.

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

NLF3: Oui Love Exchange tour

Another look at the Oui Love Exchange tour, which got under way at the end of last month and
comes to Edinburgh tomorrow on Thursday October 2.

The shows features Andrea Balency and NLF3, two quite different but strikingly cutting edge acts.

I mentioned Andrea Balency previously on the blog, so I thought it only fair to give a mention to co-headliners NLF3.

They're a a rock band, but one that goes beyond any regular categories and venture into a territory more associated with contemporary electro acts.

They've been active since 2000, their debut album Part 1 - Part 2 coming out that year. The band consists of brothers Nicolas and Fabrice Laureau and since 2006 drummer Mitch Pirès.

Along with their albums, they've also performed live scores for silent films, their Music For Que Viva Mexico! album collecting their musical backing for the Sergei Eisenstein classic.

There are more details about the Oui Love Exchange tour on their Facebook page 

Mr Oizo: Machyne

A new track by French electro pioneer Mr Oizo ahead of the release of a new album.

Machyne comes from Mr Oizo's fifth album which will be entitled the Church and is to be released on Brainfeeder.

Oizo- Quentin Dupieux to his friends -  is of course best known for Flat Beat, a breakthrough track  from his Analogue Worms Attack album that reached number one in the UK in 1999.

Since then he's released another three albums, as well as directed film projects and music videos.

The new album is expected on November 18.

Editorial: October 2014

A  busy month in September, with another busy one ahead. 

Fortunately most of the busy things ahead involve French music, with a wealth of new releases ahead

I found myself a bit sidetracked in September with the Scottish Independence referendum and associated work occupying much of my time. It might not have gone as I had hoped, but such discussion is for elsewhere.

September also saw some key French acts playing in the UK, with Yann Tiersen, Moodoid, Orval Carlos Sibelius all playing. More are here this month, with the Oui Love Exchange Tour featuring Andrea Balency and NLF3  at venues across the UK, along with Etienne Daho and Lily Wood playing shows in London.

The pre-Xmas busy release schedule continues, with several significant releases scheduled over the next few weeks, and we'll hopefully be across most of these.

As always, I can be contacted on johnkilbrideAThotmailDOTcom, with the appropriate punctuation where you'd expect it to be. I'm always pleased to hear from record companies, PR companies and promoters, so do get in touch.

We're also on Twitter as @viveleroq or you can find me at @karnag

Thanks as always  to the good people at the French Music Office in London and to the Institut francais in London for their help and encouragement.

Merci et à bientôt

John K