Thursday, 2 December 2010

Alizée - Une enfant du siècle (2010)

Since I adore her, and because she generates the overwhelming majority of hits to my blog, it seems only fitting that I finally get around to reviewing Alizée's new album Une enfant du siècle. It's hard to review other-language albums; connecting can be a matter of the imagination. Alizée has set her sights on creating a soundtrack-for/tribute-to Warhol muse Edie Sedgewick.

Fusing a lilting b/w cinematic 60s aesthetic and derailed disco decadence, Eden Eden rejects her previous pop inclinations for a darker shade of gauzy synths and an altogether floatier quality than before. Electro-popper Grand Central gives coller dance grooves, its synthesized texture is alluring and Alizée breathes light and air. B-movie soundtrack fodder Limelight is lush and cold atmospherics. Romantic La Candida has foregrounded textures and a dramatic air: a French pop dream. First single Les Collines (Never Leave You), like all else, is a tough commercial sell. Her deapan cuteness is indicative of her progression into an obscure-sounding chentease. An aural persona whispering, 14 décembre is all languid synths and subdued lyricism. Rocking steady, À cœur fendre has a sweet eurodisco rhythm. Modern love gets old fashioned, Factory Girl is an ethereal dystopia/utopia - it's hard to say. Closest in style to her previous pop persistence, Une fille difficile is invitingly downbeat. Closing standout Mes fantômes is a complete stunner; stark, uplifting melancholia.

Whilst it is a real shame to have no trace of her former collaboration with both Mylène Farmer and Laurent Boutonnat, perhaps their divorce might produce some optimism for the French pop princess to regain her native commercial lustre by reuniting with monsieur Boutonnat. Une enfant du siècle is a wistfully low-key set of unassuming, gestured and synth-laden gems far too soundtracky for their own good. Fans of Saint Etienne and Dusty Trails are in for a vrai plaisir. Alizée's bravery is commendable: it's her best album yet.




JP.M said...

Hello, Alizée started singing very young at home.
She has great talent but does not win the success it deserves!
Thank you for your good artilces and good weekend, in JPaul france.

Diva Incarnate said...

That's true, it's a shame she is flopping so badly. She came over to the UK for Lolita and I was hooked ever since. Was it ever explained why she stopped working with LB if not MF herself as well?