Thursday, 25 November 2010

L'Amour Electronique this Saturday

This Saturday it is the final L'Amour Electronique of the year, here are the details so you can join us if you are able:

Saturday 27th November
9pm - 3am
The West Hill, 67 Buckingham Place, BN1 3PQ

We will be playing all things French, all things synth, and other things electronic.
Plus the pub is cosy and warm and serves fine wines, ales and spirits (with student discounts!).
Fingers crossed there will be a TV (the other one was commandeered) and we can show this:

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

SETLIST from 23 October 2010

Here is last month's setlist.  No mp3 selections this time, but you will soon be able to listen to a 2 hour mix recorded on the night.  This will be aired in the next couple of weeks, so watch this space.

Christie Laume - L'Adorable Femmes Des Neige
Brigitte Bardot – La Madrague
Charlotte Gainsbourg - The Operation
Sebastien Tellier – Manty
Clor – Good Stuff
Stereo Total – Mars Rendezvous
Glass Candy – Candy Castle
Electronicat – Frisco Bay
Brigitte Bardot – Contact
Michel Polnareff – Oiseau de Nuit
Biky – Reponses
Joe Gracy & Michel Paje - Valérie Se Rebelle
Stereolab – Sun Demon
Jacques Dutronc – Il Est Cinq Heures Paris S'Eveille
Jean-Jacques Perrey – Mister James Bond
France Gall – Sacré Charlemagne
Stone – Auguste le Chat
Fabienne Delsol – Pas Adieu
Mareva – Pourquoi pas moi
Dalida – Petit Elephant Twist
Françoise Hardy – Pourtant tu M’aimes
Marie Laforêt - Mais si loin de moi
Air – Talisman
Stereo Total – Barbe à Papa
Human League – Open Your Heart
Eurythmics – Here Comes the Rain Again
Deux – Dance With Me
Feline 1 – Touch and Go
The Chap – Now Woel
Stereo Total – Miss Rébellion Des Hormones
Christie Laume – Rouge Rouge
Jacques Dutronc – Sur Une Nappe De Restaurant
Chantal Goya – D’abord dis-moi ton nom
Sylvie Vartan – De Bonheur
Baby Birkin – Black…White
The Rogers Sisters – Les Fantasies sont Bien
Devo – The Day My Baby Gave Me a Big Surprise
Buggles – Video Killed the Radio Star
Ladytron – Mu-Tron
We Are Enfant Terrible – Snap Dragon
Jenny Rock – Mal
Les 5 Gentlemen – Si tu Reviens Chez Moi
Daniel Gérard – Sexologie
Pierre Henry & Michel Legrand – Teen Tonic
Serge Gainsbourg – Initials BB
Stereolab – Percolator
The Normal – Warm Leatherette
C++ - Dé-rock ‘n’ Rollisation
M – Pop Musik
Jane Birkin - Raccrochez c'est une Horreur
Depeche Mode – The Meaning of Love
France Gall - Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son
Michel Polnareff – Tout Tout pour ma Chérie
Jacques Dutronc - La Leçon De Gymnastique Du Professeur Dutronc
Lio – Amoureux Solitaires
Brigitte Bardot – Bubblegum
Hot Butter – Popcorn
Add N to (X) – Adding N to (X)
Dandi Wind – Balloon Factory
Adult – Pressure Suit
Cobra Killer – Let’s Have a Problem
Stereo Total – Illégal
Ria Bartok – Écoute mon Coeur
Orlane Paquin – Le Train de 10h03
Francis Lai – Un Homme et Une Femme (instrumental version)
Chantal Goya – Dans la Nuit
Soft Cell – Say Hello, Wave Goodbye
Charlotte Gainsbourg – IRM
Michèle et ses Wouaps – Dam Dam
Gillian Hills – Tu Mens
Fabienne Delsol – Ce Jour La
John Baker (BBC Radiophonic Workshop) – The Chase
Monty - Que Me Reste-t-il?
Cettina – Cettina
Stereo Total – Musique Automatique
Add N to (X) – The Monkey Skirt Marters
Anna Karina – Rollergirl
Joe Gracy & Michel Paje - Sur La Route
Dani – La Fille à La Moto
Stereolab – Lo Boob Oscillator
Human League – (Keep Feeling) Fascination
Serge Gainsbourg et Charlotte Gainsbourg – Lemon Incest
Yazoo – Nobody’s Diary
Françoise Hardy – Je Veux Q’uil Revienne
Jacques Dutronc – Le Responsable
Pulp – Styloroc (Nites of Suburbia)
Human League – Rock ‘n’ Roll
John Foxx – Burning Car
The Associates – Skipping
Soft Cell – Tainted Love / Where did our Love Go?
Depeche Mode – New Life
Miss Pain – Shelf-Location ROM ( softcover remix)
Michel Polnareff – La Mouche
Eileen - Ces Bottes Sont Faites Pour Marcher
Ladytron – He Took Her to a Movie
Takako Minekawa - Fantastic Cat
Christine Pilzer - Champs Élysées
Grace Jones – La Vie en Rose
Serge Gainsbourg – Docteur Jekyll et Monsieur Hyde
Jean-Michel Jarre – Oxygene (Pt 4)
Vic 20 – Sweet Child O’ Mine
Baby Birkin – St Tropez
Christine et Ses Copains – Mon Mini-Croullant
Jacqueline Taïeb – 7 Heures du Matin
Brigitte Bardot – Moi Je Joue
OMD – Electricity
Coralie Clément – Vis à Vis
Soft Cell – Bedsitter
Japan – Life in Tokyo
Stereo Total – Je Rêve Encore de Toi
M83 – Violet Tree
French Language disque

Friday, 19 November 2010

Swinging Mademoiselle vol. 3

News in yesterday via the Swingin' Mademoiselles facebook page.  Sasha Monett has been compiling Girls in the Garage volume 12. Yes, that's Sasha Monett who put together both essential Swinging Mademoiselle comps.  It may be titled Girls in the Garage, but essentially it is Swinging Mademoiselle volume 3.  Scheduled for a fall release (in the UK too, please!) on Dionysus Records. 

L'Amour à la Chaîne pt.2

From Jacques Dutronc's L'Amour à la Chaîne we move on to...

Françoise Hardy's Je Changerais D'Avis.

There are some obvious links: We could focus in on Dutronc and Hardy, arguably French pop's most beautiful couple, who finally married in 1981, and only recently separated (though they still remain close); Or on the fact both tracks were released on the Disques Vogue label; It's also worth mentioning that Dutronc penned one of Hardy's early hits Le Temps De L'Amour.

But no, Jacques Lanzmann is the shared interest. It was he who co-wrote the majority Dutronc's back-catalogue, but did you know he collaborated with Françoise Hardy on the French lyrics for Je Changerais D'Avis?

Released in 1966, this is possibly the most emotionally charged song in Françoise Hardy's back catalogue: it opens with a disarmingly understated verse and bridge, then just explodes into a great, big heartbreaking chorus. A brief pause for breath and a snare-roll, then it rockets off higher into the stratosphere. It's one of those songs, like River Deep, Mountain High, that leaves you breathless and ragged, and it never fails to bring a tear to my eye.

And the composer of this musical rollercoaster?  Genius cinematic soundtracker Ennio Morricone.

According to legend the 3-note melody was based on the police sirens Morricone heard from his Marseille hotel room one night. He composed a spiralling, repetitive cycle which ran through 8 tonal transitions, the tension building with each one. The song was originally released as Se Telefonando earlier in 1966 by Italian belter Mina, with lyrics by Maurizio Costanzo.

Françoise Hardy - Je Changerais D'Avis
[buy Françoise Hardy from iTunes | |]

L'Amour à la Chaîne: what will be the next link in the chain? Leave your suggestions and reasons in the comments.
Jacques Dutronc - L'Amour à la Chaîne > Françoise Hardy - Je Changerais D'Avis > ?

Monday, 15 November 2010

French Radio London launches this Wednesday

This Wednesday 17th November sees the launch of French Radio London.  Tune in at midday on DAB digital radio* or online at

* You may need to do a re-scan on your digital radio to find it.

[see previous post for more info on FRL]

Monday, 8 November 2010

L'Amour à la Chaîne pt.1

Welcome to a brand new, ongoing L'Amour Electronique blog theme: "L'Amour à la Chaîne".

The idea is to gradually build up a chain of songs, with each song connected in some way to the previous link in the chain. The links may be clever, stupid, convoluted, tenuous, based on fact or fiction - just as long as there is some kind of relationship from one song to the next...

The opening link in the chain is, of course, the eponymous L'Amour à la Chaîne, an early 70's, scratchy violin/call-and-response hyper-rock'n'roller by Jacques Dutronc.

Written by Dutronc and his long-term song-writing partner Jacques Lanzmann, the song was released in 1974 as the b-side to L'Aventurier (which featured in the film O.K. Patron, 1973, with Monsieur Dutronc in the role of "Gangster by accident, Gentleman by vocation".)

L'Amour à la Chaîne is also the title of a 1964 film by Claude de Givray (released in the UK with the dubious Carry On-esque title of Tight Skirts, Loose Pleasures).  Ostensibly a film about prostitution or "love in the chain", it made Jean-Luc Godard's Cahiers Du Cinéma top ten in the year of its release.

Jacques Dutronc - L'Amour à la Chaîne
[buy Jacques Dutronc from iTunes | |]

L'Amour à la Chaîne: what will be the next link in the chain? Leave your suggestions and reasons in the comments.
Jacques Dutronc - L'Amour à la Chaîne > ?

Thursday, 4 November 2010

C'est Chic! (Ace Records)

My copy of the new Ace Records C'est Chic! album dropped onto the doormat this morning...

It fulfils its role as an introduction to "French girl singers of the 1960s", and still has something to offer enthusiasts/trainspotters like me seeking new gems to sate their appetite.

Over the 24 songs, they've picked a few familiar tracks that have popped up in films and TV ads (B.B. as recently heard on a Stella beer ad; Françoise Hardy's Voila, which soundtracked a Horlicks ad, then was plundered by R*bbie W*ll*ams;  Laisser Tomber Les Filles, which the whole world will no doubt recognise as April March's Chickhabit from that Tarrantino flick).

There's also a handful of yé-yé 'classics' like Roller Girl, C'est La Mode, and, possibly the most comped French pop track ever Les Filles C'est Fait Pour Faire L'amour by Charlotte Leslie (5 compilation inclusions and counting), and it does sometimes feel like these outshine the more obscure numbers.

A real bonus is the hefty booklet filled with record covers and photos of the featured girls, plus the extensive track-by-track commentaries penned by the people behind Ready Steady Girls.

For me, it was worth the entry fee alone for Louise Cordet's scratchy violin twister, Michèle Torr's Gainsbourg-penned canter-along, and especially the closing Liz Brady number: Il Suffit D'un Jour sounds like a long-lost Bond-theme (in French of course). A heady 2 minutes 48 of  John Barry-esque strings, brass, harpsichord and timpani-laden drama directed by Jacques Denjean.

Liz Brady - Il Suffit D'un Jour
[buy C'est Chic! from]

Monday, 1 November 2010

C'est Chic! comp OUT TODAY

Thanks to Ready Steady Girls for the tip-off about this new Ace Records compilation of 60s French girls.

The tracklisting looks promising: a strong selection of ye-ye classics (Roller Girl, Laisser Tomber Les Filles, C'est La Mode, etc), plus some more obscure cuts from Louise Cordet, Les Gam's and Jocelyne.  I have to say the cover is a bit disappointing though. I'm sure they could have found a more hip and sassy photo to adorn it (even of France Gall!).

I've just ordered my copy from
[forgot to mention, Mick Patrick, who helped put the compilation together, has chosen 6 of his faves for you to listen to in Ready Steady Girls' November Pick of the Pops]