Friday, 22 September 2017

Charlotte Gainsbourg: Deadly Valentine

Another new track by Charlotte Gainsbourg ahead of he relase of her new album later this autumn, with a video for the track Deadly Valentine.

The title track of the new collection, entitled Rest, came out earlier this month.

Charlotte's been busy with her film career over the past few years, and hasn't released an album since 2011's Stage Whisper collection of live material and out-takes.

Rest features collaborations with Paul McCartley, Daft Punk's Guy Manuel de Homem-Christo and Connan Mockasin and is released on November 17.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Marietta: Nos Ventres Nus

There's a chance to see one of France's most interesting developing artists in London tonight, with Marietta
one of the acts on the bill at Birthdays in Dalston.

Marietta is a project that revolves around singer songwriter Guillaume Marietta.

The clip comes from his second album, La Passagère, which  was released last Month on Born Bad Records, the label wihich is also home to some of France's most colourful and interesting acts of the moment such as La Femme and Orval Carlos Sibelius.

It follows his 2015 debut Basement Dreams Are The Bedroom Cream, albeit it with a  bigger budget than that album's lo-fi handmade production. Despite being performed in French, La Passagère was recorded in the USA.

Marietta play live in London tonight as one of the acts on the bill of the latest Oui Love club event at Birthdays in Dalston, alongside Aquaserge and Dead Sea.

Dead Sea: Lotion

A striking video from Dead Sea for the song Lotion, originally released in May.

It's a dark and hypnotic work from the Paris-based four piece, with the kind of video David Lynch might have made were steeped in eastern European modernist architecture and design.

They describe what they do as 'turbo chillwave', and that sounds fair enough to us.

It follows their debut track 8.50 that emerged earlier this year.

Les Inrocks rate Dead Sea as one of the key new French acts worth following at the moment. they supported UK showgaze legends Slowdive at a show in Paris last year.

Dead Sea play live in London tonight as one of the acts on the bill of the latest Oui Love club event at Birthdays in Dalston, alongside Aquaserge and Marietta.

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

OrelSan: Basique

A new clip from French rapper OrelSan, announcing the release of a new solo album.

The video for Basique was shot on a partially-constructed bridge in Ukraine with the help of a drone. It's quite a piece of work and was directed by Greg&Lio who have previously worked with Jain and with Orelsan's Casseurs Flowters project.

Orelsan hasn't released a solo album since 2011's Le Chant des Sirènes, a top three seller in France. It went on to win best urban album of the year Victoires de la Musique award the following year, OrelSan also picking up the breakthrough artist of the year award that year.

Since then he's been concentrating on his work with Casseurs Flowters, the duo of OrelSan and Gringe enjoying massive success in France with two albums and a film so far.

Orelsan's success has not been without controversy, with accusations of misogynist and homophobic lyrics over the years. His work with Casseurs Flowters has probably helped with his critical and popular rehabilitation, the stripped down rap he delivers for Basique seems to target those who he believes have failed to understand his work.

Orelsan's album is released on October 20.

Oui Love Psych Made in France

There's a pretty special gig in London tomorrow, with three of France's contemporary psych acts taking tothe stage of Birthdays ahead of the Liverpool Psych Fest at the weekend.

Aquaserge, Makietta and Dead Sea are the acts performing in Dalston, all much rated by this blog.

The event is being held by the good people at Oui Love Music Made in France, in partnership with Rockfeedback and The Line of Best Fit.

It's the third time Oui Love has been held this year, and it's developing into a well-curated showcase for French acts in the UK.

France has been a fertile ground for fine psych acts in recent years, and the chance to immerse yourself in three of then is an opportunity not to be missed.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Francis Cabrel: Le Fils unique

Francis Cabrel is marking the 40th anniversary of his career with the release of two previously unreleased songs, and the release of his back catalogue on streaming platforms.

Cabrel has always been a principled artist, and had for a long time refused the use of his music on online streaming platforms, and only this week confirmed his change of heart.

He announced his back catalogue would be available to listen via streaming on September 18, the 40th anniversary of the release of his debut album Les murs de poussière, a collection that featured his top five hit single Petite Marie.

Cabrel's gone on to release 13 studio albums and half a dozen live collections in his career so far, and written some iconic modern chanson works including Je l'aime a mourir and Je t'aimais, je t'aime et je t'aimerai. His most recent studio album was 2015's In extremis, a follow up to 2012's album of Dylan covers Vise le ciel.

Cabrel's initial decision to prevent the release of his material on streaming sites was down to a number of reasons, he told le Parisien, including the fact that he ragarded the sound quality as inferior to CD, that artists - particularly young artists - were not getting sufficient renumeration and that streaming was slowing the sales of albums.

But his opinion changed on seeing his own children's use of streaming as a means to consume music, and his own subscription to a streaming service saw him realise how practical it was. He could access new releases when they came out, he could download then as he would a newspaper, and appreciated how it could actually encourage those who loved music to buy a CD.

Two new previously unreleased songs have come out to mark the occasion, and a new album from Cabrel is expected some time next year.

Monday, 18 September 2017

Moodoïd: Au pays des merveilles de Juliet

Delighted to report a new release by Moodoïd, to these ears one of the most important acts in France's fertile psych scene.

Pablo Padovani from Moodoïd was previously guitarist with Melody's Echo Chamber, one of the acts that helped bring France's  new psychedelic acts to the world's critical attention.

I've been a fan of Moodoïd since before the release of their 2014 debut Le Monde Möö. Their work has consistently surprised, shot through with a playful strangeness that refuses to be easily constrained by genre conventions.

Their album had flavours of jazz, Bollywood, electro and funk, a widescreen and technicolour creation with more creativity and adventure in one album than many artists manage in their entire career.

The new track is a very disco informed cover of Au Pays des Merveilles de Juliet, the title track of a 1973 album by Yves Simon. While making an instantly approachable track, Moodoïd keep the strangeness of the track to the fore.

Padovani's continuing to release surprising work, and it bodes well for future Moodoïd material. fingers crossed we won't have to wait too long.

Moodoïd play La Gaîté Lyrique in Paris as part of Les Inrocks Festival on November 25.

Friday, 15 September 2017

Lescop: Live in London

I've been a fan of Lescop since before his 2012 debut album, the artist known to his family as Mathieu Peudupin delivering a work that was as modern as it was steeped in the classic cold wave environment of the 80s.

So delighted to see he's got another show in the UK tonight, only a short time after he played here over the summer.

His second album Echo, released last year delivered on the promise of his debut, establishing him as one of France's most distinctive acts. Sophisticated and intelligent, but with an immediate accessibility.

You could reference the likes of French heroes like Daniel Darc or Jacno in relation to Lescop, or you might even recall some of the post-punk work done by Iggy Pop in the early 80s.

He's playing in London again tonight as the closing show of a series of autumn dates that quickly followed his summer festival engagements across France.

Lescop plays the Lexington tonight, with support from C.A.R and tickets are available here.


Thursday, 14 September 2017

Rone: Brest

A new track by French electro pioneer Rone, ahead of the release of a new album later this autumn.

Brest continues his groundbreaking electronic work that began in 2008 and has seen him become one of France's most respected artists.

While perhaps not as commercially orientated as other French artists, he's gained some serious critical praise for his music, at times as close to modern classical as it is to the dancefloor.

Last year Rone collaborated with Jean-Michel Jarre on his Electronica 2: The Heart of Noise album alongside other collaborators ranging from John Carpenter and the Pet Shop Boys to Sébastien Tellier and Christophe.

Brest comes from Rone's forthcoming fifth album entitled Mirapolis, which is due to be released on November 3. The much-anticipated follow up to his 2015 Creatures album is released on Infiné Music.

Rone plays live across france and neighbouring countries in November and December and is in Paris at the Trianon on December 13.

BogZH Celtic Cats: Kazh ar Lagenn EP

We've  not been at our best in flagging up the developing French talent in recent months, due to inactivity on our part rather than the lack of interesting acts out there for sure.

BogZH Celtic Cats have a short video ahead of the release of their forthcoming six track EP, featuring a cover of the Dropkick Murphys' Prisoner Song, Scottish rebel favourite Ye Jacobites by Name and a couple of their own rousing numbers.

I've always loved French celtic music, maybe it's because I'm based here in Scotland and it seems a solid cultural link between our countries. Maybe just that celtic music really does sounds great in a rough rock setting.

I featured Daonet, the band that included some of the members of BogZH Celtic Cats way back when this blog was young. Good to see them getting on and releasing the kind of material that we need to hear more of.

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Charlotte Cardin: Main Girl

Charlotte Cardin is a Canadian artist who has been making an in impression in France, particularly with the song Main Girl, the title track from her recent EP.

The Montreal-born former model appeared on The Voice in Canada in 2013 and made it to the finals. She went on to guest on Garou's Au milieu de ma vie album, duetting  on the song Du vent, des mots.

Last year she released her debut solo EP Big Boy, featuring lyrics in English as well as French.

Main Girl features on her six track EP of the same name that was released at the beginning of this month.

With a soulfulness that belies her youth, Charlotte Cardin has the kind of voice that we'll be hearing a lot more of in the months and years to come.

Charlotte Gainsbourg: Rest

A new track by Charlotte Gainsbourg is always going to get our attention, especially when it's a track involving Daft Punk's Guy Manuel de Homem-Christo.

The light electro backdrop he creates is a perfect stage for Gainsbourg's distinctive vocals.

The song Rest comes from her forthcoming fifth album, her first since 2011. As well as Daft Punk, the cast of guests includes Paul McCartney, Owen Pallett, and Connan Mockasin.

Her last collection was 2011's Stage Whisper album, a double album that featured out-takes from her IRM album and a live set.

Since then a cover of Hey Joe, for the Nymphomanic soundtrack, is all that she's released since.

Still, given that there was 20 years between her Charlotte For Ever debut and her 5:55 second album, it's really not been that long a wait.

In recent years she's maybe been concentrating more on her acting career than on her musical output. Given the career she's had, you can't blame her. Her father worked with film throughout his career but never attained the level of artistic and critical success that Charlotte has enjoyed, with César and Cannes awards to her name.

The next chapter in her musical career  is expected to be released on November 17 on Because Music.

Thursday, 7 September 2017

MC Solaar: Sonotone

A welcome return from French rap legend MC Solaar, with the track Sonotone emerging ahead of his forthcoming new album.

It's ten years since he released his Chapitre 7 album - a top ten release in France - almost a lifetime in rap music.

But timne has not diminished him, and Solaar sounds on form here, his new track still featuring the urgency and the intelligence that has made his work appreciated well beyond the French rap world.

The video makes nods to some of his previous work, Solaar's been a major star since the early 90s and was one of the pioneers to establish rap music in France with his early hit Bouge de La, 1997's Paradisiaque album reaching number one in France.

Solaar's new album Géopoétique is expected in November.

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Yan Wagner: It Was A Very Good Year

A new video from Yan Wagner, with the track It Was A Very Good Year featuring on his second album This Never Happened.

It's a cinematic and disturbing video for this moody piece of electro showcasing his dark crooning perfectly. If Scott Walker ever fronted a particularly melancholic Kraftwerk it might sound a bit like this.

It is a song made famous by Sinatra which has been covered by dozens of other artists since, from Robbie Williams to the Flaming Lips. Maybe best to ignore William Shatner's cover of it.

Yan Wagner's album came out earlier this month, a follow up to his widely acclaimed debut Forty Eight Hours which came out in 2012 and it's his first release on new label Her Majesty's Ship.

Expect it to be mentioned again by many others as one of their highlights of 2017 before too long.

Editorial: September 2017

A quiet month from us last month, despite quite  a lot going on. This month we'll endeavour to make amends, and we will actually post a lot more than we managed over the last four weeks. It is La Rentrée after all.

Plenty happening over the next few weeks, with some releases, tours and the last of this summer festivals, September seeing the Fête de l'Humanité run over three days from September 15-17.

Later this month three fine acts are playing in London under the Oui Love banner, with Aquaserge, Marietta and Dead Sea playing on September 21 at Birthdays.

Psych Made In France also features in the bill for the Liverpool Festival of Psychedelia, with Laetitia Sadier, Acid Arab, as well as Aquaserge making another UK appearance.

Acid Arab also have a show in London at the Jazz Cafe on September 23.

As we move towards the run-up to Christmas, record companies are preparing a ton of releases and we'll be across what comes out.

In the meantime,you can contact us at 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 drop me an email. I'm always keen to hear new things, and relay information about acts I already know and love.

The blog is also on Twitter as @viveleroq, although that's prety much just an autofeed when we update with a new article. You can usually find me on my personal Twitter acount quicker, @karnag

If you're around Facebook, remember to like the French Music Podcast UK page, where you can get regular updates with both fresh and vintage French music.

Thanks as always to the good folks at Oui Love Music From France .

Merci et à bientôt,

John K