Monday, August 31, 2009

What's Going On

So, what have we got round these parts?

I - As you're already aware, my 3rd album is out, see this post.
And to get it, go there!

Now, for future projects...

II - "The Hollow Lands" EP
I've already mentioned this, it will be a folk-blues EP, without synths, which means lots of guitars, bass, drums and other acoustic delicacies...
It will most probably be on iTunes, around Christmas, and it's an intimate yet somehow apocalyptic road trip through 1930's America.
The tracklist :
- Days of Constant Sorrow
- Hungry Ghosts
- The Hollow Lands
- Endgame Blues / The Flood Song
- Muddy River

III - "Chasing Ghosts" EP
Not sure about the format to this, but it'll probably be a side-project with a different singer. The style will be indie pop, with more electric guitar than usual.
The tracklist :
- The Farewell Song
- The Great Lost Sorrow Tune (featuring
Lowlifi on lap steel)
- Ghosts of my Enemies
- End of Words

IV - "Broken Sails II" EP
Just a temp title, but it'll be another free EP, in the same lush synthpop vein than "Broken Sails" with a little more rhythm and funkiness.
The tracklist so far :
- Colour of Bone (nice pop song with Miss Roxanne on vocals and some samples from the Twilight Zone)
- Leaving (remake of a song previously released by the now defunct Papergoose Records)
- Mary’s Mellotron Song (same)
- Life on a Sinking Ship (another sea-inspired tripping song)
- The Farewell Song II (big band pop, with Queen-like choir... well, almost!)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Listening Mode : Dennis Wilson, "Pacific Ocean Blue"

This is one occasion where the cover pic grabbed my attention on the shelf and got me to listen to the record. I never was too much into the Beach Boys, so I didn’t realize at first that Dennis Wilson was part of that Wilson family. It was the vintage-looking photograph of that sullen bearded man that caught my attention. Since then, I managed to listen to the whole Beach Boys canon, and found out that Dennis Wilson’s career had a George Harrison curve to it, from being a simple performer to providing the band with isolated gems that would prove to match the main composers’ efforts. Like Harrison, Dennis Wilson went on to release a superb first solo album, and here we are in 1977, with the musically rich and profoundly humane “Pacific Ocean Blue”.

The opening track, “River Song”, is a good example of Wilson’s very personal style, starting out with a most classic piano riff in major mode, the sort of riff you might expect from any other 1977 middle-of-the-road hit single, followed by a gospel choir. But then, as Dennis’s raspy, powerful voice begins to wail about cities and pollution, the music slowly evolves into a raging, dark, almost apocalyptic clash of ultra-low voices and massive rhythmic strokes. It all moves down to a simple, quiet piano part, then back to a coda of pure electric joy.

The rest of the album is equally great, and shows what a sophisticated writer and arranger Wilson had become by then. After “River Song” come a batch of intense and brooding celebrations of rock and roll and Jesus (I don’t know the connection, but Wilson seems to do), evoking boiling hot LA friday nights and fruitless dreams of fame. The music slows down and envelops itself in cascades of synth strings and warm guitars, for a series of bittersweet, summer-tinged ballads, which shows Wilson at its rawest and most sincere, whether meditating about the dissolution of love (“Thoughts of You”) or its timeless flow (“Time”, “You and I”). One more catching ode to Mother Nature (“Pacific Ocean Blues”), a humble, moving funeral tune (“Farewell my Friend”), a sweet and refreshing love song (“Rainbows”) and there we are, at the “End of the Show”.Well, it’s been a wonderful one indeed, and just like Elliott Smith and so many others, too bad it ended so quickly. Dennis Wilson lived a life as intense as its songs, drank too much and fought too hard, and drowned in the ocean he loved so much one December day of 1983, leaving an unfinished album (“Bambu”, featured on the last reissue) and this enduring masterpiece.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Oh Well, Okay

I was a big fan of Elliott Smith, what a loss.
Listening back to the "XO" album the other day, I thought I'd do a quick cover of one my favorite song...
Piano and Gforce M-Tron. Vocals sound a bit weird, but there you go!

Saturday, August 22, 2009


Well, it took some time, but finally my third album is available.
There's been quite a lot of free music round here lately, so this one is a commercial release on iTunes.
Please support independant music:)

Here's the link to purchase the album :

UPDATE : here's a zip file with audio clips of all 12 songs : Preview the album
12 songs, mixing pop and electro with a touch of funk.
Technically speaking, this was mostly done with Moog Little Phatty, Microkorg, Gforce M-Tron and a number of other soft synths I can't recall too well.

And here's a video trailer!

Strawberry Blonde - Trailer
envoyé par khoral_kmore. - Regardez d'autres vidéos de musique.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Bowie du Jour : Be my Wife (final)

A nice pop song from one of my favorite Bowie album, 1977's "Low".
The original is somewhat melancholy, I tried to give a poppier feel.

All Moog Little Phatty and Prophet 08.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Listening Mode : John Cale, "Paris 1919"

Note of intention : I don't care for professional music critics , and today everyone is an online critic anyway. That's why this blog is mainly about making music, instead of talking about someone else's work. I don't feel the urge to join the zillion of bloggers busy sharing their scorn or appreciation about whatever new album from whatever hip (or unhip) artist is on the shelf. BUT, at the same time, I felt that it'd be a good idea to point at some interesting records from the past that deserves to be known a lot more than they actually are. So... I won't waste my time and yours bashing Mika or James Blunt (although it's really tempting), but instead, will (briefly) hint at some nice records that you may have missed, and perhaps inspire you to go take a listen.

John Cale, « Paris 1919 », 1973.

Child's Christmas in Wales
Hanky Panky Nohow
The Endless Plain of Fortune
Paris 1919
Graham Greene
Half Past France
Antarctica Starts Here

Like probably most people, I came across John Cale through the Velvet Underground, and, again like most Velvet enthusiasts, soon found out that the temperamental Welsh had a most fascinating solo career. This 1973 gem is probably his best known record, and yet (like the rest of Cale’s career) remains much too obscure.

The title and the artwork say it all, this is a European record, set at a particular time and place, namely the Plains of Endless Fortune that were Europe after the apocalypse. Musically, the record perfectly captures the melancholy quiet of post-war Europe, from the opening “Child’s Christmas in Wales” to the placid, but somehow vaguely menacing “Antarctica starts here”. At first glance, the mood is light and sunny, but it’s only the deceptive quiet after civilization has been put to a painful halt. A misanthropist Cale leads us “down on darkened meetings on the Champs Elysées”, taking snapshots of colonial empires crumbling to pieces and deadly boring tea parties in England, musing aboard a train going nowhere : “From here on it's got to be/ A simple case of them or me/ If they're alive then I am dead”.

The instrumentation lean to the classical, as exemplified by the title song’s chamber symphony, and Cale provides some of his most beautiful acoustic ballads with the suitably glowing “Andalucia” and “Hanky Panky Nohow” (and its memorable line : “Nothing frightens me more/ Than religion at my door”). With the Velvet, Cale was the experimental guy, the Larsen master, the prince of noise, and would later go to extreme fits of violence on stage, but “Paris 1919” stands as a monument of subtlety and class, a musically complex yet organic sounding, lyrically oblique, a timeless piece of work.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Video Retrospective : Roadmaps for the Bugs

Didn't do that one... Nicolas Plaire did, for the "Animal Fraud" album.
Check out his site :
And buy the "Animal Fraud" album!

Singer Oly on vocals, and pretty much the whole song was recorded with Electribe EMX.

Roadmap for the Bugs
envoyé par muftix. - Futurs lauréats du Sundance.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Covers Covers Covers

I've recorded a number of cover songs for this blog, I thought it was time for a little compilation EP.
So here's my favorites from the past months.

1 - Captain Hook (John Cale)
2 - El Condor Pasa (Paul Simon)
4 - Huck's Tune (Bob Dylan)
5 - State Trooper (Bruce Springsteen)
6 - The Promise (Bruce Springsteen)

And the whole in zip form : Covers

Monday, August 10, 2009

Riversongs EP... final track

And here's the complete zip

1 - City Island Walk
2 - Pigs and Rabbits, Suricates and Dolphins
3 - Green Tea Chocolate
4 - Nani wo kangae desu ka?
5 - Second Chance (Full Circle)
6 - The Snow Bride Song

It's a summer tinged work, 6 instrumental tracks with various moods, from lush ballads to little pop pieces, all wrapped in 1975 vintage attire.