Monday, 30 November 2015

Aline: Les Angles Morts

An impressive new clip from Aline for their track Les Angles Morts.

For the video, the band asked internet users in October to send them images they could use inspired by nocturnal wanderings, parallel and urban atmospheres.

The track, and its video has taken on a much more significant meaning in the light of recent events, the band saying that it was with a heavy heart that they decided to keep the montage as it was before the tragic events.

The song features on the band's second album La Vie Electrique.

Aline play Paris at Le 104 on April 14 next year

Friday, 27 November 2015

Grand Blanc: Surprise Party

A new single by the mighty Grand Blanc, the track Surprise Party emerging today ahead of the
release of their album.

The Paris-based four piece were one of the highlights of last year's Transmusicales fastival in Rennes, proving to be as impressive  alive act as their previous releases led me to hope.

The band's earlier releases make it clear that their album will be something to look forward to in the new year.

Grand Blanc's debut album, to be entitled Mémoires Vives, is scheduled for release in February 2016.

Nolwenn Leroy, Camélia Jordana and Yael Naïm: Quand on n'a que l'amour #hommagenational

Tributes have been paid in Paris this morning to those killed in the terrorist atrocities earlier this month.

A ceremony at Les Invalides saw leading figures from the world of politics as well as the arts pay tribute.

One significant moment was the performance of the song Quand on n'a que l'amour by Nolwenn Leroy, Camélia Jordana and Yael Naïm.

The song was originally written by Jacques Brel, it's been coverd by many artists since.

A measured and considered song choice, and an absolutely appropriate one for the circumstances.

Nolwenn Leroy, Camelia Jordana et Yael Naïm... by Europe1fr

Louis Bertignac: Hallelujah

A magnificent live version of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah performed by Louis Bertignac.

Bertignac dedicates it simply: "For Paris and France."

It, of course, recalls the version of the song recorded at the Bataclan club by Jeff Buckley, from his 1995 EP.

Bertignac has been playing solo shows as part of the tour following the release of his solo album Suis-Moi last year,  and he's also played a few shows with two fellow Téléphone veterans under the name Les Insus, to huge demand.

Téléphone  are enjoying a higher profile than ever, with a raft of re-issues and re-packages on the market, along with a new various artists tribute CD.

 Bertignac has a show scheduled at La Cigale in Paris on December 3.

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Transmusicales Preview: La Mverte

Electronic music takes a central role in this year's Transmusicales festival in Rennes, and another act worth
investigating is La Mverte, playing at the l'étage venue in the city centre.

La Mverte is a project featuring Alexandre Berly, a musician, DJ and producer who played keyboards with Yan Wagner.

He released his first EP under the La Mverte name - Through the circles - in 2014. A second EP A Game Called Tarot in April.

A joint EP The Line, with Alejandro Paz, emerged earlier this month.

He played at the Red Bull Music Academy in Paris in October, he's no stranger to the event having been involved in the Red Bull Music Academy event in Tokyo.

Bose headphones advert: Charles Aznavour - Hier Encore

Another high-profile appearance by some French music on an advertising campaign, with a song by Charles
Aznavous being used in an ad for Bose headphones.

The advert, entitled Music Deserves Bose: Someone Special features a man being transported back in time through the music he is listening to on his fancy new wireless headphones.

The song was originally released by the veteran chanteur in 1964 and makes an unusual choice of track for an advert like this, a classic tune for a piece of modern technology.

The song is better known to an anglophone audience in its English version, under the title Yesterday When I Was Young, and was co-written by Aznavour. Many artists hare recorded covers over the decades, including Julio Iglesias, Bing Crosby and Marc Almond.

The advert makes the point that music is a time machine. Perhaps that makes Aznavour, now in his 90s and still performing, some kind of time traveller.

Indochine : Alice & June (live)

A new clip by Indochine for the track Alice & June, ahead of the release of their forthcoming live
collection documenting their two recent shows at the Stade de France.

Black City Concert is released on December 4 in multiple formats covering the two shows the veteran band played at the national stadium in Paris during their Black City Tour, a tour that ran for over a year promoting the release of their Black City Parade collection

The band played extensively on the back of that release, and ensured their reputation as one of France's most significant rock acts ever.

They've already released one live collection from the tour, Black City Tour, released last year. But there's clearly a massive demand for more live material from a hugely successful tour.

Alice & June featured on the special delux edition of Black City Concert.

Indochine play a special show at the Trianon in Paris on December 9.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Transmusicales Preview: Holy Strays

Many interesting acts on the bill at this year's Transmusicales event in Rennes next month, a key showcase
for emerging acts in France.

One that got my attention was Holy Strays, a project by Sebastien Forrester, an artist working in a particularly interesting area of electronic music.

There are touches of classical and some dub, but it's a fascinating blend. He's been active for a couple of years, and the Paris-based artist has started to establish a very credible reputatuion,

France has excelled in this field in recent years, and with acts like Holy Strays there are signs that the future of the genre in French hands is a good one.

Brigitte: Le Grand Journal appearance

An appearance last night by Brigitte on Le Grand Journal, the flagship show on French TV channel Canal+

The appearance saw them perform with a string quartet - The Free Bows - for the song Plurielle.

They also performed the tile track of their A bouche que veux-tu album.

A new edition of the album was released earlier this month, as a two CD edition with unrelerased material and a disc of tracks recorded with an orchestra.

They played at the Zénith in Paris earlier his week, a show that went ahead despite recent events. They later said: "To share that moment with you last night was extraordinary for our hearts."

Brigitte are still on tour, with shows in December and January until April, with shows across France, New Caledonia and Australia.

The Dø: Trustful Hands

A new clip by The Dø, with a new representation of the song Trustful Hands.

It's another track from their Shake Shook Shaken album, the duo's third collection. The album won the best rock album award in the 2015 Victoires de la Musique awards.

The new clip sees  Olivia Merilahti and Dan Levy adopt a Japanese aesthetic.

The Dø had a show in Paris on Saturday November 14 cancelled as a consequence of the attacks on the capital the day before, and have rescheduled their gig at the Olympia for December 20.

They also play a show in London at The Electric in Brixton on December 16.

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Transmusicales preview: Inüit

The Transmusicales festival is all about new and emerging acts, and while acts from across France andbeyond get the chance to impress on the big stage, the inclusive nature of the event sees it extend into the city centre, where the L'étage venue hosts a series of shows, almost like a mini-festival within the larger event.

There is a programme of free shows on the Thursday, Friday and Saturday, meaning that the festival is not just for those able to attend the late night sets at the parc expo on the edge of the city.

The late afternoon/early evening times mean that the truly dedicated can of course fit in both in the course of a full-immersion in music over the course of several days.

Getting proceedings under way this year are Inüit, who perform on Thursday afternoon. They are a six-piece from Nantes, associated with that city's Conservatoire. But what they perform is not any rarified classical material, but a very organic and unique electroacoustic thing.

Their debut EP is released in January 2016.

Florent Pagny and Anggun: Nos vies parallèles - C à vous

A live appearance on C à vous by Florent Pagny and Anggun, with the song Nos vies parallèles.

The track comes from Anggun's new album Toujours un ailleurs, which came out last week.

It's the sixth French language album from the Indonesian-born singer, who moved to France to pursue her career in the 90s.

She's one of the most successful Asian artists in relation to the western audience, and France has adopted her as one of their own.

Pagny, now something of a veteran figure, has been a massive seller since the early 90s, with his most recent album 2013's Vieillir avec toi, a number one album in France.

Monday, 23 November 2015

Transmusicales Preview: Paradis

The Transmusicales festival in Rennes at the beginning of next month is a crucial showcase for some of France's finest emerging acts, so in the run-up to the event I though it only right to feature some of them on this blog.

The last two years saw Benjamin Clementine and Jeanne Added achieve considerable recognition as a result of their performances, both being give the opportunity to play multiple shows during the course of the festival.

This year sees a similar opportunity being given to Paradis, who play five shows at the Aire Libre venue.

The act, a Paris-based duo of Simon Mény and Pierre Rousseau have been releasing material since 2011,  their French language vocals and sophisticated groove making them one of the country's most promising new acts.

They've featured on this blog earlier this year, with the track Sur une Chanson en francais. You can probably expect to hear a great deal more of them in 2016 following their performances at this years Transmusicales.

Benjamin Clementine: Mercury Award winner

A well-deserved Mercury Music Awards win on Friday for Benjamin Clementine, with his debut album
At Least For Now recognised as the album of the year.

When I first heard he was on this year's shortlist I was pretty confident he was the best artist there. I really should have bet £10 that he would have won.

It's a remarkable album, poetic and confident, like nothing else but probably the closest I've heard to French chanson in the English language.

The winner was selected by a panel of musicians, music writers and broadcasters and is seen as one of the UKs most presigious music awards, on account of it being awarded for the artistic merit of the winning album rather that simply by their popularity.

Previous winners since the award was first presented in 1992 include Pulp, PJ Harvey, Portishead and Anthony and the Johnsons

There were 12 acts on this year's shortlist, including Aphex Twin, Florence and the Machine, Slaves and Jamie XX

Clementine graciously dedicated his win to Paris, the city that became his adopted home and the scene of the tragedy that unfolded just one week before.

Clementine has featured on this blog many times previously, and despite being from London, he lived in Paris for several years, sleeping rough until he was discovered working as a busker. He signed to a French label and established his reputation as a performer there, with gigs at events like the Transmusicales festival building his name.

The album was a number one seller in France.

He may have won the UK's most prestigious musical awards, but he's very much an honorary French artist too.

Mermonte: Angélique Beaulieu (live)

A lovely performance by Mermonte from earlier this year, with the Rennes based band playing
outdoors during the city's I'm From Rennes festival earlier this year.

The event saw bands play at venues throughout Rennes, at clubs and bars but also at unusual venues

The video was shot in the Parc du Thabor in the city, and sees them perform the track Angélique Beaulieu, a track from their 2014 album  Audiorama.

Mermonte are currently working on a new album, and are set to release their third album in 2016 and it will certainly be one to anticipate.

Saturday, 21 November 2015

Playlist: Dimitri from Paris

A quality mix from Dimitri from Paris, with an articulate response to the darkness that descended on the city.

He explains: "Rather than pray, I choose to play. And play music is a way I know to express my voice.

"I hope this will help, if only so slightly, in lightening the heavy burden that's been recently cast on our lives.

"I dedicate this hour of French, nonchalant music to those who's life was taken because they chose to play, rather than pray.

"In Paris, but also elsewhere around the world, they remind us how high is the value of freedom of choice, at the cost of their lives."

Friday, 20 November 2015

St Germain: Sittin' Here

Nice to hear some new material by St Germain, with the clip Sittin' Here from their newly released
self-titled album.

St Germain, a project by Ludovic Navarre, has had a low profile in recent years, despite being massive in the 90s with his jazz-flavoured house.

His 1995 debut Boulevard sole over 1 milion copies, 2000s Tourist reaching the top five in France.

The new album puts a flavour of Mali in the mix, the album emerging last month and reaching the top 20 in France.

The video directed by Cédric Mérand is a very smart piece of work indeed.

St Germain played a sold-out show at the Bataclan in Paris on Thursday November 12, the night before the terrorist atrocity.

Animali: Who?

A quite startlingly psychedelic clip by Animali for the track Who?

Plenty of cool retro science fiction references too, always a good thing in my book. I'm sure the recipe works well too...

The band made the video in the course of a single night, the band saying it involved crisps, been and a version of Final Cut.

The track comes from their new five track EP entitled This Plane is going down, are we all gonna die?, which is available as a free download. 

I was fortunate enough to see Animali play at the 1988 Live Club in Rennes last December. Great live act, and looking forward to hearing more by them before too long.

Thursday, 19 November 2015

New Acts: Giirls - Far Life

A familiar name behind a new release, with the EP Far Life by Giirls.

Brice Delourmel is the artist behind the act, he's also involved in the Paris/Rennes band Dead, who have featured on this blog more than once in the past.

Giirls is a solo project, the new EP recorded at home

Giirls featured alongside Dead on the n0thing collective compilation n0thing #03 which emerged in February this year.

As you'd expect from an artist involved with Dead, it's a suitably sepulchral piece of electro, six tracks that would sound superb at implausible volume amid clouds of dry ice and strobe lighting.

The Far Life EP is released officially today.

Lilly Wood and the Prick: I Love You - Live on C à vous

A live take of the song I Love you by Lilly Wood and the Prick from French TV show C a Vous  originally broadcast at the end of last week.

Lilly Wood and the Prick released their much anticipated new album entitled Shadows last week.

It follows the massive international success Nili Hadida and Benjamin Cotto enjoyed with Prayer in C in 2014 after it was remixed by German DJ and producer Robin Schulz.

That track originally featured on their 2010 debut album Invincible Friends, so if previous performance is any indication of future success, we can probably anticipate this track topping the charts in the UK some time in 2019.

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

New Acts: Bruit Noir - Requiem

A new release by the Bruit Noir, an act consisting of Pascal Bouaziz and Jean-Michel Pires from Mendelson.

The track Requiem features on their album I/III, which emerged on the Ici d'ailleurs indie label earlier last week.

It's an atmospheric and powerful piece of work.

Brut Noir play a release party for the album at Le Klub in Paris on December 15

Editorial: The Paris atrocity

I've held off updating for a few days in light of the atrocity in Paris at the weekend. It didn't seem right to write about music following what happened.

I watched the events with horror, hundreds of miles from France. But the interconnected nature of modern society brings us all closer.

Friends were at the football match at the Stade de France, friends of friends died at the Bataclan, colleagues interviewed survivors.

I never intedned this blog to be overtly political, there are already more then enough badly-written blogs full of opinion and short of facts covering that field.

But politics and terrorism impacted not only the country I love and a city I love, but directly targeted people with whom I have so much in common.

There have rightly been tributes, and there have also been voices calling for revenge as well as idiots using events to further their agendas.

The story is still unfolding in France and how it will end I don't know. While I fear he worst, I hope for the best.

I am confident in France and its people. While some things may change, the values that underline the republic will be maintained, and the spirit of the people that constitute it will  prevail.

Grand Corps Malade posted some touching words, saying that while hate and a desire for revenge had been expressed: "Above all I have seen hope, I have above all seen courage and dignity"

"Like the widower who declared to the terrorists that thet will not have his hate, nor that of his 17 month old son.

"Like the elderly woman who stated that we live with 5 million Muslims, and that we fight against 10,000 barbarians.

"Like the journalist who declared that no one coulkd take from us that which makes us what we are.

"Like the child who repeats that the flowers and the candles are to protect us"

He continued: "France is beautiful because she doesn't give in to panic. She is beautiful because she continues to shine in all her colours, her differences and her inconsistencies"

"She is beautiful because she loves to dance and make noise, sing and live at light. She is beautiful because she loves to raise her glass and look into your eyes. She is beautiful because she has a big mouth.

"She is beautiful because she is a rebel and insolent. France is beautiful because it is free and that, no none can take from her."

Vive la France.


Friday, 13 November 2015

Caravan Palace: Lone Digger

A new video by Paris based electro-swing act Caravan Palace, for the track Lone Digger.

The song features on their most recent album <I°_°I> in October, which features their previous single Comics.

Probably for the benefit of radio DJs, the album title is also apparently knopwn as Robot Face.

The band have been attracting some attention in the UK, with a high-profile appearance on the Jonathan Ross show at the end of last month.

They tour the UK in December, with dates in Bristol, Glasgow, Manchester, Brighton, London and Norwich.

Before then they play L'Olympia in Paris on November 20.

Rover: Call my name (C à vous live)

A nice live appearance on French TV chat show C à vous by Rover, for the track Call my name.

The track comes from his Let it Glow album, his second, which was released on November 6. It follows his self-titled debut, which was released in 2012.

Timothée Régnier, as he's known to friends and family, grew up in New York to French parents, and spent time in Lebanon where he established himself as a musician. On his return to France he adopted the Rover name.

His work nods to the early to mid 70s stylings of Bryan Ferry and David Bowie, clever without being inaccessible, distilling some of the best ideas that have emerged over passing decades.

He's touring in France from January, and  plays at the Olympia in Paris on March 24.

Johnny Hallyday: De l'Amour (Review)

Jour J and Heur H for the new Johnny Hallyday album, with De l'Amour the veteran singer's 50th  studio release.

The new collection, dropped as a surprise while he tours to promote last year's Rester vivant album, sees him working with Yodelice.

He seems to have a sympathetic touch, the album has a modern flavour without losing its rock and blues roots. Some rockabilly on the title track, a trace of western on l'amour me fusille, a shot of pedal steel on Un Dimanche de janvier.

There's less showboating, less emphasis on stadium filling anthems or power ballads, and it's all the better for it. It comes across as more authentic and more personal. The voice is there, of course, but Johnny doesn't need to prove anything.

All it takes is  the support of some top notch musicians and some fine songs to showcase it, things this album delivers solidly.

De l' Amour avoids the easy Johnny Hallyday cliches, the music in it is located in the wide open spaces of a rugged American landscape, shot in cinematic wide screen. Johnny centre of screen, exactly as it should be.

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Nicolas Godin: Live in London

The chance to see Nicolas Godin, also known as half of legendary French duo Air, at a gig in London tonight.

He plays at Oval Space in Bethnal Green.

Godin recently played at  the Red Bull Music Academy event in Paris.

He released his solo album Contrepoint in September. It's an experimental collection, where he plays with different music styles in his own way, from jazz to classical.

It was his first solo album after his work with Air, and it shows he's lost none of the touch that helped Air become one of the acts that defined French music.

November 11 - Armistice Day

An old school song to mark Armistice day, November 11.

Renaud's 2009 album Molly Malone – Balade irlandaise saw his interpretations of Irish songs He'd previously toured pubs in Ireland in '97, with little publicity despite his being a large star in France at the time.

The album was a number one seller in France, despite questions being asked about the strength of Renaud's voice, by both critics and fans.

It has been, so far, his last full album release, but he remains very much a high-profile figure with the two Bande à Renaud collections introducing his work to a new generation.

Renaud's French version of the song Willie McBride retains much of the original's anti-war sentiment.

With the drums of war beating as loudly as ever, and with xenophobia and racism being exploited for political ends, the lesson of the First World War has, it seems, still not been learned.

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Housse de Racket: The Tourist - Monte Le Son session

A session appearance by  Housse de Racket for Monte Le Son, with the track The Tourist getting an

The song is the title track from the Paris-based duo's recently released  third album which emerged at the end of last month.

Victor le Masne and Pierre Leroux established their reputation at the forefront of the French music scene with their 2008 debut Forty Love, where they found their own unique place where dance music, indie and electronic overlapped.

They play at Le Trianon in Paris on November 28.

Thylacine: Train

A new track by Thylacine, Train coming from his forthcoming new album inspired by his voyage on the Trans Siberian Railway and recorded on board the train during the journey.

The intercontinental railway journey of almost 10,000 miles connects Moscow with the Russian far east.

Thylacine has been releasing short videos documenting the trip, with three episodes a week throughout the month of November.

Samples of the rythm of the rails underscore the piece, while images from the journey illustrate the video.

The album Transsiberian us released on November 29.

Thylacine has a busy schedule of live dates in November and December across France, and plays at La Cigale in Paris on February 5

Monday, 9 November 2015

Calogero: Live in London

 A night in London tonight from Calogero, who plays a show at the Scala.

His 2014 Les feux d'artifice album, his sixth, was a massive seller. The album, which was released in August 2014, was a number one seller.

The song Un jour au mauvais endroit won a Victoires de la musique award in February for the best original song.

A live album by Calogero, entitled Live 2015, is expected to be released at  the beginning of next month.

Mylène Farmer and Sting at the NRJ Music Awards

A performance at the weekend at the NRJ Music Awards by Mylène Farmer and Sting, of the song Stolen Car, the first single from Mylène's new album.

The collection,  Interstellaires, was released on Friday. It's Mylène's tenth album, and its release was met with a massive commercial success.

Stolen Car was produced by French DJ The Avener and, it gave Mylène her 14th number one single, her first since 2012's À l'ombre.

The award ceremony also saw Mylène present Sting with an honorary award.

Among the other winners at the event, the 17th time the NMA have been held,  were Louane for the Francophone breakthrough artist, Shy'm for best Francophone female artist, M Pokora for best male Francophone artist, Fréro Delavega for Francophone group/duo of the year.

The Francophone song of the year award went to Kendji Girac's Conmigo and DJ of the year was David Guetta.

Honorary awards also went to Adele, Charles Aznavour  and Juston Bieber.

But while the international attention may have gone to the performance by Adele, it was Mylène's appearance that the French audience would have been watching.

Friday, 6 November 2015

Grand Corps Malade: Pocahontas

A cracking new video by Grand Corps Malade, the song Pocahontas from his most recent album.

The album, entitled, Il nous restera ça, was releases at the end of last month.

The album features guest appearances by a diverse cast of other artists, including Renaud and Charles Aznavour, but this track focuses entirely on GCM himself.

It's a remarkable video, in the best tradition of being a simple idea done perfectly. I thoroughly enjoyed the the album it comes from, nice to see a video that gives it more of the attention that it deserves.

Johnny Hallyday: Te Manquer - Deezer Session

A unreleased new session version of the track Te Manquer by the legendary Johnny Hallyday, recorded for a
Deezer session ahead of the release of his new album.

Johnny, now 72, releases his 50th studio album De l'amour next week. The title track came out as s single last month, the announcement of the album and single coming as a surprise during his current tour.

He's on tour at the moment, until March next year, with three shows at Bercy in Paris at the end of November, and two more there in February.

Te Manquer featured on his last album Rester Vivant. More from the Deezer session is to emerge in the very near future.

Hindi Zahra: Silence

A new track by Hindi Zahra, with the song Silence being lifted from her Homeland album.

It's the this track from the album to be released as a single

Homeland was released in April this year,a  top thirty album in France that followed her 2010 Handmade album.

That release won the  Prix Constantin for Best Album that year, and the following year the Victoires de la Musique award for the best World music album.

She's got extensive tour dates across France in November, including a show in Paris on November 18, but ahead of that she plays the Royal Albert Hall in London this weekend.

Lenparrot: Amedeo's Wife

An atmospheric  video for the track Amedeo's Wife by Lenparrot.

Lenparrot is of course Romain Lallement, who is also the singer with Nantes band Rhum for Pauline, featured on the blog recently with the release of their new clip after their album came out in September.

But Lenparrot is a very different proposition musically, more reflective and seemingly more fragile.

The new track comes from Lenparrot's second EP, entitled Naufrage, which is due out in early 2016.

Lenparrot plays at this year's Transmusicales de Rennes in December, having played there as a
member of Rhum for Pauline in 2011, and with Pégase in 2012.

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Woodkid: Volcano

A previously unreleased track by Woodkid has been made available for a free download or stream.

The release of Volcano is to mark the second anniversary of the release of his The Golden Age album.

The track has featured in his live performances but a studio version has never been released until now.

He explained: "Exactly two years ago, I produced this instrumental track especially for The Golden Age World Tour.

"The beat is articulated around a live Tuba and Brass hook, and arranged for a whole set of orchestral percussions and strings.

"You’ve been asking for a clean recording of the track for quite a while now. So to celebrate its birthday, I finally recorded a studio version of Volcano that you can download for free."

The track is available to download on the Woodkid website

Maître Gims: ABCD

A new clip by Maître Gims for the track ABCD from his recent Mon cœur avait raison album, one of
 2015's most significant rap releases.

THe album was a long-awaited follow up to his 2013 debut solo collection Subliminal, which featured the hits J'me tire and Bella.

ABCD featured on the rap-orientated disc of his Mon cœur avait raison double album which came out at the end of August. It's already sold close to a quarter of a million copies.

Gims embarks on a tour shortly, mostly at the Zénith arenas around France, with a show at the AccorHotels Arena in Bercy, Paris, on December 14

Rhum for Pauline: Florida

A new clip from Rhum for Pauline, with the track Florida.

The track comes from their Leaving Florida album, which was released at the end of September.

The track Pan Peter was also released with a clip just before the album emerged, with a video with a very different flavour indeed.

Florida is a key track from their debut album, a song that grows to an epic scale and reveals itself as a sophisticated piece of work. Much like the album itself.

Rhum for Pauline played the Badaboum in Paris last night and have a couple of live dates in their diaries, with a show in St Nazaire on November 10 and another in Reims on December 18.

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Benjamin Clementine: C à vous session

A live appearance by Benjamin Clementine on the French talks show C à vous, with a memorable
version of the track London.

Clementine tonight plays l'Olympia in Paris, a sold-out show.

Although London born, Clemintine's established himself as a musician in his adopted home of Paris.

His debut album At Least For Now has been a massive success, which most recently saw him nomimnated for the Mercury music prize in the UK.

He has a number of dates in the UK in early December, amongst dates across Europe.

Caravan Palace:Live on the Jonathan Ross show

A high-profile appearance for a French band in the UK, with Caravan palace appearing on the Jonathan Ross show.

The programme is ITV's flagship talkshow, broadcast on Saturday nights.

The episode featuring Caravan palace was broadcast on Saturday October 31, other guests on the show included Priscilla Presley, Elvis Costello, Rob Beckett and Danny Dyer.

Caravan Palace released their album, entitled <|°_°|> last month, following the release of the songs Comics and Lone Digger as singles.

I featured the band on this blog in July, nice to see them getting some recognition.

The band are touring extensively, and have a number of dates in the UK from December 10

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

La Femme: Nous étions deux (Apple Watch commercial)

A surprise appearance by a French music track in one of the new adverts for Apple's new watch, with a song by La Femme appearing in their 'Ride' commercial.

The music being used is Nous étions deux, a track from their 2013 Psycho Tropical Berlin debut album.

The song was released as a single with its own video clip.

I can't see an obvious connection between being lost on your scooter and asking Siri for directions via your watch and a cool piece of modern French psych,  other than Apple wants its Apple Watch to be seen as cool, and La Femme certainly are that.

Still, if it introduces a very fine band to a wider audience that can be no bad thing at all.

La Femme are on tour and have a sold out gig at Koko in London on November 24, and have confirmed a show at L'Olympia in Paris on March  23 next year,

Selah Sue: TV5Monde Acoustic session

A new edition of Acoustic, the music show on TV5Monde, with solo artist Selah Sue making her debut on the programme.

Her Reason album was released in March this year, a top three album in Fance and a follow-up to her massively successful self-titled debut album from 2011.

The programme included brief interview  segments with host Sébastien Folin.

Tracks played include Alone, Reason, Raggamuffin, Feel and Always Home.

Feu! Chatterton: Boeing - Live on C à vous

A nice live TV session by blog favourites Feu! Chatterton, with an appearande on C à vous last week.

Feu! Chatterton have just released their debut album the track Boeing featuring on it.

The France 5 talk show is on MOnday to Friday, hosted by Anne-Sophie Lapix.

The band are working hard to promote tha album, and are on an extensive tour that saw them play a sold-out show at Le Trianon in Paris last month.

They're playing there again on December 11 and one again on January 27, having just published a list of dates for January, February and March next year.

Monday, 2 November 2015

LEJ: Hip Hop Mashup

One of the big commercial successes in France this summer, and some time after, was the track Summer
2015 by LEJ, an act consisting of three young artists who mashed together the hit songs of the season, making their own hit.

This time round they take on some hip hop tracks, with Black Eyed Peas, Eminem and Dr Dre coming under their gaze.

Lucie, Elisa and Juliette obviously hope that they repeat the success of Summer 2015, a number one with over 22 million views on YouTube. Perhaps they will, Hip Hop Mashup has already hit over a million views in a matter of days.

But, while  it's hard to think of them as anything other than a novelty act, their debut album is scheduled for 2016 and a large scale tour sees them perform all over France, with a sold-out show at La Cigale in Paris on March 3 and another Paris date at L'Olympia on May 27.

Jean-Michel Jarre: Deezer Close Up

A nice little interview with Jean-Michel Jarre, with music streaming service Deezer appropriately enough putting the focus squarely on the music.

While Jarre has just released a new album, the interview only touches on it briefly, moving to  music Jarre has an involvement in, or has affected him.

He talks about his working with M83, the  cover of his song Les Mots Bleus by Alain Bashung, the music by his father Maurice Jarre for Dr Zhivago, and how the music of Chet Baker affected him.

He talks about working with Laurie Anderson, who features on his most recent album as well as on his Zoolook album from  the 1980s, and discussed Christine and the Queens covering the song Paradis Perdus which he wrote for Christophe.

In discussing St Germain he makes the claim that electronic music is a European thing, and not the natural territory of the US or UK, saying "For me electronic music really first emerged from France and Germany, in Germany with Stockhausen and in France with Pierre Henry and Pierre Shaeffer and it has little to do with the USA and anglo-saxon countries. "

He adds that rock 'n' roll is an ethnic music of the anglo saxon that went on to conquer the world, but its a type of music that many outside the anglo saxon world struggle to express themselves in.

 It's an interesting point of view, and one that's bound to be debated.

Editorial: November 2015

 Another month behind us at Vive le roq, and a busy month it was indeed.

October saw another torrent of posts, as much a reflection on the amount and quality of releases.
November also looks like being a busy month, with a number of key releases in the run-up to Christmas.

Two of France's indisputably most commercially significant acts Mylène Farmer and Johnny Hallyday both have new albums coming out this month, with just one week between them.

November also sees the NRJ music awards, which although the most international of the French music awards ceremonies, will certainly have more attention than usual with Mylène Farmer expected to make an appearance.

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

If you're around Facebook, remember to like the French Music Podcast UK page, for a regular dose of fresh and vintage French music.

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

Merci et à bientôt

John K