Tag: Brussels Belgium

New Video: clo Returns with Vibey “Big Smile”

clo is an emerging, 20-year-old, San Francisco-born, Brussels-raised, neo-soul/R&B and jazz singer/songwriter, who’s currently splitting her time between New York and Paris, where she’s simultaneously pursuing studies in Neuroscience while modeling, and starting a professional music career. 

The emerging Belgian-born artist can trace the origins of her music career to when she started receiving classical and jazz training in piano when she turned four. Since then, clo has spent much of her formative years creating her own original music, inspired by Etta JamesElla FitzgeraldSnoh Aalegra, and CELESTE

Earlier this year, I wrote about clo’s debut single “room,” a slow-burning and vibey ballad centered around the young Belgian-born artist’s sultry vocals paired with a brooding production featuring skittering, tweeter and woofer rattling trap beats, twinkling jazz piano and atmospheric synths. The song reveals an artist, who’s remarkably self-assured beyond her relative youth — while showcasing an artist, with an uncanny knack for mature, lived-in lyricism and a well-placed, razor sharp hook. 

Her second single “Big Smile” is a vibey, neo-soul-like ballad that finds the emerging young artist collaborating with a live band, which gives the song a lush, cinematic sound and a vibrant, you’re-there-in-the-studio immediacy — all while continuing to reveal a singer/songwriter with a mature beyond her years self-assuredness.

The accompanying video for “Big Smile” primarily features home video shot footage of the young San Francisco-born artist as a small child. The video hints at the very origins of the young artist’s passion and career and a loss of innocence and simplicity.

New Video: Belgian-born Artist clo Shares Sultry and Self-Assured “Room”

clo is a 20-year-old, emerging, Brussels-born neo-soul/R&B and jazz singer/songwriter, who’s currently splitting her time between New York and Paris, where she’s simultaneously pursuing studies in Neuroscience while modeling, and a professional music career.

The emerging Belgian-born artist can trace the origins of her music career to when she started receiving classical and jazz training in piano when she turned four. Since then, clo has spent much of her formative years creating her own original music, inspired by Etta James, Ella Fitzgerald, Snoh Aalegra, and CELESTE.

clo’s debut single “room” is a slow-burning and vibey ballad centered around the young Belgian-born artist’s sultry vocals paired with a brooding production featuring skittering, tweeter and woofer rattling trap beats, twinkling jazz piano and atmospheric synths. The song reveals an artist, who’s remarkably self-assured beyond her relative youth — while showcasing an artist, with an uncanny knack for mature, lived-in lyricism and a well-placed, razor sharp hook.

The accompanying video follows the young Belgian-born artist on a glorious summer day through beautiful Paris.

New Video: Belgian JOVM Mainstays Whispering Sons Share Gorgeous Visual for Brooding “Tilt”

Initially started in 2013 as a hobby for its then Leuven, Belgium-based founding members Kobe Linjen (guitar), Sander Hermans (synths), Lander Paesan (bass) and Sander Pelsmaekers (drums), the rising Brussels-based post punk act Whispering Sons have evolved a great deal. As the story goes, the band then-in search of a singer, recruited Fenne Kuppens, who at that point had been uploading covers of bands like Slowdive to Soundcloud.

Already fostering deep ambition, Kuppens rigorously prepared for the gig. “I’d always wanted to sing in a band, but I never had friends who made music, they weren’t in my surroundings,” Kuppens recalled in press notes. “They were talking about this post-punk thing that I’d never heard of before, so I had to read into it. I could see myself in it, I felt the music.”

Leuven is a quiet, European university town and its mainstream-leaning music scene didn’t connect with Kuppens. But after a year studying abroad in Prague, where she immersed herself in the city’s DIY scene, Kuppens was galvanized — and inspired. “I made friends there who did things with their lives! There was a guy who had a DIY record label and who made music, all from his bedroom. I thought, if they can do this, why can’t we at least try?” Kuppens recalls. As soon as she returned from Prague, she relocated to Brussels. The remaining members of the band — Linjin, Hermans, Pelsmaekers and Paesan — later joined her. And immediately, the band quickly began honing their live show and sound. 

Inspired by Xiu Xiu and Chinawoman, Kuppens’ distinctive, low register vocal style emerged early. “I started to feel more comfortable on stage, to express myself more rather than just singing a song,” she says. “I started feeling the music more, identifying more with the sounds and what I was doing.” Kuppens stage presence became known for being transfixing and trancelike, defined by compulsive movements. “People have said it looks like I’m fighting my demons onstage, I guess there’s some truth in that,” she says.

During the summer of 2015, the band went into the studio to record material. “Fenne was really pushing us saying ‘We have to go for it, not just make another demo,” Whispering Sons’ Kobe Linjen recalls in press notes. The result was their goth-inspired debut EP, 2015’s Endless Party EP. Just a few months after its initial release through  Wool-E-Tapes, the Brussels-based post-punk act won Humo’s Rock Rally, one of Belgium’s most prestigious music competitions.

With the increased attention and accolades came bigger shows, bigger tours across Europe and larger crowds. “People started to expect things from us. We had to adapt quickly,” Linjen adds. The demands of a growing profile and the attention brought onto the band, saw the band setting new, more ambitious targets for themselves. While writing new material for the increasingly longer sets their increased status required, they began to grow tired of the limits of post-punk and eagerly sought ways to push past them as much as possible. “We wanted to evolve, we wanted to attract larger audiences and not just play in one scene,” Kobe continues.

The Belgian post-punk quintet released two 7 inches, 2016’s “Performance”/”Strange Identities” and  2017’s “White Noise” — while going through a lineup change: the band’s friend Tuur Vanderborne replaced Paesan on bass. Their Micha Folders and Bert Vliegen co-produced 2018 full-length debut Image was released through  Cleopatra Records here in the States and Smile Records throughout the rest of the world.

Recorded over a ten day period at Waimes, Belgium’GAM StudiosImage found the band crafting a dark, brooding blend of experimental and frenetic post-punk that expressed the alienation, loneliness and anxiety that each individual member felt when they relocated to Brussels, Belgium’s largest city. Image garnered praise from music press across the globe — and it amassed millions of streams across digital service providers.

Before pandemic-related quarantines, lockdowns and restrictions, the Brussels-based post punk quintet was establishing themselves for a ferocious, must-see live show while sharing stages with the likes of The Murder CapitalPatti Smith, The Soft MoonCroatian Armor and Editors. “We were very happy with Image, and at that point it was the best thing we could have made,” Fenne Kuppens says. “But from the moment we finished it we started to look at it in a critical way. ‘This is something we should do again. This is something we don’t like.’ So very quickly we found the direction we wanted to go in for the next album.”

During the summer of 2020, the members of Whispering Sons retreated to the Ardennes to work on new material. And in those writing sessions, the band took what they believed were the strongest part of their earliest work and refined them even further, with a focus on their greatest strength — sheer, unpretentious intensity. “We tried to create an album that’s more direct and more dynamic. More in your face,” Kuppens says. 

Kuppens can trace the origins of the lyrics for the band’s sophomore album  Several Others from one sentence she’d scribbled in a notebook “Always be someone else instead of yourself.” “It’s terrible advice,” Kuppens says in press notes. “But it resonated with me and my personal ambitions.” She stared writing about her uncompromising perfectionism that was partially responsible for the band’s success and yet was becoming stifling and overwhelming. “I was at a stage where it was becoming unhealthy. You always think things have to be better, that you can always do more.”

The album, which featured “Satantango” and “Surgery,” went straight to #1 on the Belgian album charts and was released to critical acclaimed across Europe. Their dark and brooding blend of experimental and frenetic post punk paired with their ferocious live shows have helped to cement the Belgian post-punk band’s reputation as one of Europe’s most exciting new bands.

The Belgian act’s latest single “Tilt” was written during the Several Others sessions but was eventually cut from the album because the band felt it didn’t fit in with the rest of the tracks. “Tilt” is a slow-burning and brooding song centered around a sparse arrangement of metronomic-like drumming, twinkling bursts of keys, atmospheric synths, a propulsive and sinuous bass line paired with Kuppens distinctive, baritone-like vocals. With the freneticism dialed down, the introspection behind the lyrics come to the forefront.

“Tilt’ was really a group effort. We had all been working on the song for a long time, trying out different arrangements and different parts, before eventually settling on its final form,” Whispering Sons’ Kuppens says in press notes. “When we went to the studio to record our second album Several Others the track quickly became the odd one out. It became a more intimate and stripped-down version of what we initially intended. We felt that it didn’t fit with the rest of the album, but that it still deserved a release on its own.”

New Video: Belgian Artist Solstice Releases a Coquettish Visual For Latin-Tinged “Amis”

Solstice is an emerging 24 year-old, Brussels-born and-based singer/songwriter, pianist and composer. The emerging Belgian artist can trace the origins of her career to her childhood: Solstice took piano lessons throughout her life — and she eventually attended the Dalcroze Institute before spending couple of years. She also wrote her own poetry. Gradually, she began pairing the poetry in her notebooks with original compositions. Interestingly, her work has been deeply inspired by her mother and her mother’s record collection, which included classical music, psych rock, French chanson, swing and several others — and all of those influences find their way into her music.

In 2015, the Belgian artist joined Zones À Défendre, a French environmentalist group, where she met a collection of poets, activists, thinkers, assorted radicals — and producer/musician Guy Waku.

Waku went on to produce the Belgian artist’s debut ep Amis venez à moi. Released last November, the EP features the Roland Devresse co-written “Amis.” Featuring a lush vocal arrangement for three part harmony, delivered in a coquettish French “Amis” is a slickly pop song that’s centered around a looping, tango-inspired production.

Directed by Gilet Jaune Guillemette Dur, the recently released video for “Amis” sees the emerging Belgian artist meet up at a local club and leads the entire club to a night of Latin-influenced dancing.

New Video: Brussels’ Romina Palmeri Releases a Gorgeous Bachata Ballad

Romina Palmeri is a Brussels-born and-based, Italian-Belgian singer/songwriter and dancer, who can trace the origins of her music career to her childhood: growing up in a family of musicians and performers, Palmeri was surrounded by the music and rhythms of the Mediterranean and of her Italian heritage. At a very young age, the Italian-Belgian artist trained in classical dance and hip-hop and began singing.

After studying sports and animation in high school, Palmeri’s love of the stage and of performing led her to the Royal Conservatory of Brussels, where she earned a Master’s Degree in theater and speech. Upon graduation, she landed several roles as an actor including Solange in Lucy Mattot’s A coups de ciseaux de couture, a montage of Jean Genet’s Les Bonnes. Since 2016, the Brussels-born and-based artist has landed roles in Festival Bruxellons! productions of musicals like Evita, Sunset Boulevard and My Fair Lady. Palmeri has also played Studio 100’s and Ketnet’s Mega Mindy.

In late 2019, the Italian-Belgian artist played Yvette in Bertolt Brecht’s Mére Courage et set enfants, directed by Christine Delmotte. She then joined the cast of the musical Notre Dame de Paris, playing the roles of Esmeralda and Fluer-de-Lys. And since last year, she has has been the understudy for the roles of Maria, Elvira and Isabel for he musical, Don Juan.

Despite what seems like an already busy schedule, Palmeri has managed a music career: she has contributed backing vocals to several albums by Francesco Palmeri and Frédéric François‘ 2013 effort Amor Latino. She is currently working and recording her own original material, as well as covers in French, Spanish, Italian and English.

Earlier this year, Palmeri released a gorgeous cover of Selena’s “Dame un beso.” Building upon the momentum of that cover, the Italian-Belgian’s latest single is an original track, “Dulce Miel,” written in the traditional bachata ballad style. Centered around shimmering acoustic guitars and bachata rhythms, “Dulce Miel” is roomy enough for Palmeri’s gorgeous and expressive pop star-like vocals. As a native Queens boy, the song brought back memories of hearing bachata out of the windows of local house parties — but as Palmeri explains, the song is a passionate love song with a very simple message: love always wins.

Directed by Georges Vanev, the recently released and sensual video for “Dulce Miel” stars Palmeri and Julio César Gutarra as a beautiful, young couple, who are madly in love.

New Audio: Acclaimed Kinshasa-Based Collective KOKOKO! Releases a New Banger

Led by Makara Biano and prolific French producer débruit, the pioneering and acclaimed Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo-based DIY electronic collective KOKOKO! is fueled by growing spirit of protest and unrest among their hometown’s young people. And much like young people across the globe, Kinshasa’s young people have begun to openly question centuries’ old norms and taboos, and they’ve openly begun to denounce a society that they perceive as being paralyzed by fear — namely,. the fear of inclusiveness and much-needed change.

The collective and their local counterparts have done this with a fearless in-your-face, punk rock sort of ethos. This isn’t surprising: the acclaimed Congolese collective’s name literally means KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK! — with the collective viewing themselves as the sound and voice of a bold, new generation defiantly banging on the doors and walls, yelling out “OUR TIME IS NOW!”

The Kinshasa-based collective’s creative processes are centered around the notion that poverty and the desperately urgent need to survive often fuels wild creativity. And unsurprisingly, they operate in a wildly inventive DIY fashion, creating self-designed and self-made instrument made from recycled and reclaimed flotsam and jetsam and recovered junk. They even built a recording studio out of old mattresses, reclaimed wood and an old ping-one table.

The collective exploded into the national and international scenes with their critically applauded, full-length debut 2019’s FONGOLA was a forward-thinking, urgent effort featuring a difficult to pigeonhole, global orientated sound with elements of disco, post-punk, hip-hop, reggae, retro-futuristic funk, Afro-futurism and the region’s traditional folkloric sounds. The end result, was a sound that seemed to come from an alien yet familiar, near-dystopian future like our own, where the ghetto and the club where one and the same.

The Kinshasa-based collective’s latests ginned “Donne Moi,” is the first bit of new material since their full-length debut. Featured on the soundtrack of FIFA 22, “Donne Moi” sees the act expanding upon their forward-thinking, sound: while still pairing their handmade instruments with electronic production, the new single is a percussive, house music leaning club banger centered around chanted and shouted call and response vocals, rousingly anthemic hooks.

“We recorded ‘Donne Moi’ in Brussels just before the pandemic hit, and we are happy it’s finally seeing a release. The song is about giving back. Giving, as well as receiving, shouldn’t be always one way.”

The collective is currently working on new material, which is slated for release next year.

Live Footage: Whispering Sons Perform “Satantango” and “Surgery”

Initially started in 2013 as a hobby for its then Leuven, Belgium-based founding members Kobe Linjen (guitar), Sander Hermans (synths), Lander Paesan (bass) and Sander Pelsmaekers (drums), the rising Brussels-based post punk act Whispering Sons have evolved a great deal. As the story goes, in search of a singer they recruited Fenne Kuppens, who at that point had been uploading covers of bands like Slowdive to Soundcloud. Already fostering deep ambition, she rigorously prepared. “I’d always wanted to sing in a band, but I never had friends who made music, they weren’t in my surroundings,” Kuppens recalls in press notes. “They were talking about this post-punk thing that I’d never heard of before, so I had to read into it. I could see myself in it, I felt the music.”

Leuven is a quiet, European university town and its mainstream-leaning music scene didn’t connect with Kuppens. But after a year studying abroad in Prague, where she immersed herself in the city’s DIY scene, Kuppens was galvanized — and inspired. “I made friends there who did things with their lives! There was a guy who had a DIY record label and who made music, all from his bedroom. I thought, if they can do this, why can’t we at least try?” Kuppens recalls. As soon as she returned, she relocated to Brussels. The remaining members of the band — Linjin, Hermans, Pelsmaekers and Paesan — later joined her. And immediately, the band quickly began honing their live show and sound.

Inspired by Xiu Xiu and Chinawoman, Kuppens distinctive, low register vocal style emerged early. “I started to feel more comfortable on stage, to express myself more rather than just singing a song,” she says. “I started feeling the music more, identifying more with the sounds and what I was doing.” Kuppens stage presence became known for being transfixing and trancelike, defined by compulsive and movements. “People have said it looks like I’m fighting my demons onstage, I guess there’s some truth in that,” she says.

During the summer of 2015, the band went into the studio to record material. “Fenne was really pushing us saying ‘We have to go for it, not just make another demo,” Whispering Sons’ Kobe Linjen recalls in press notes. The result was their goth-inspired debut EP, 2015’s Endless Party EP. Just a few months after its initial release through Wool-E-Tapes, the Brussels-based post-punk act won Humo’s Rock Rally, one of Belgium’s most prestigious music competitions. With the increased attention and accolades came bigger shows, bigger tours across Europe and larger crowds. “People started to expect things from us. We had to adapt quickly,” Linjen adds.

With the demands of a growing profile, the band began setting new, more ambitions targets for themselves. While writing new material for the increasingly longer sets their increased status required, they began to grow tired of the limits of post-punk and eagerly sought ways to push past them as much as possible. “We wanted to evolve, we wanted to attract larger audiences and not just play in one scene,” Kobe continues.

The Belgian post-punk quintet released two 7 inches, 2016’s “Performance”/”Strange Identities” and 2017’s “White Noise” — while going through a lineup change: the band’s friend Tuur Vanderborne replaced Paesan on bass. The band’s Micha Volders and Bert Vliegen-produced 2018 full-length debut Image was released through Cleopatra Records here in the States and Smile Records throughout the rest of the world. Recorded over a ten day period at Waimes, Belgium’s GAM Studios, Image found the band crafting a dark, brooding blend of experimental and frenetic post-punk that expressed the alienation, loneliness and anxiety that each individual member felt when they relocated to Brussels, Belgium’s largest city.

Image garnered praise from music press across the globe — and it amassed millions of streams across digital service providers. Before pandemic-related quarantines, lockdowns and restrictions, the Brussels-based post punk quintet was establishing themselves for a ferocious, must-see live show while sharing stages with the likes of The Murder Capital, Patti Smith, The Soft Moon, Croatian Armor and Editors. “We were very happy with Image, and at that point it was the best thing we could have made,” Fenne Kuppens says. “But from the moment we finished it we started to look at it in a critical way. ‘This is something we should do again. This is something we don’t like.’ So very quickly we found the direction we wanted to go in for the next album.”

Last summer, the members of Whispering Sons retreated to the Ardennes to work on new material. And in those writing sessions, the band took what they believed were the strongest part of their earliest work and refined them even further, with a focus on their greatest strength — sheer, unpretentious intensity. “We tried to create an album that’s more direct and more dynamic. More in your face,” Kuppens says.

Interestingly, Kuppens can trace the origins of the lyrics for the band’s highly-anticipated sophomore album Several Others from one sentence she’d scribbled in a notebook “Always be someone else instead of yourself.” “It’s terrible advice,” Kuppens says in press notes. “But it resonated with me and my personal ambitions.” She stared writing about her uncompromising perfectionism that although was partly responsible for the band’s initial success, was becoming stifling and overwhelming. “I was at a stage where it was becoming unhealthy. You always think things have to be better, that you can always do more.”

Recently, the band released two companion singles “Satantango” and “Surgery” off the forthcoming single. Both tracks see the band ambitiously pushing the ferocious drive and intensity that helped win them international attention to the limits — while delicately balancing fragility and vulnerability. Centered around anxious and propulsive instrumentation, both songs evokes the unease of someone hopelessly trapped in stasis, possibly of their own making — and the slow-burning, creeping unease of someone struggling with their own role with their misery. Hell is often other people; but hell can be your own mind, too.

Along with the record, which is slated for a June 18, 2021 release through [PIAS] Recordings, the band will be releasing each single with a corresponding live session to be compiled and released as a live film. The band’s latest live session features the anxious “Satantango” and “Surgery.” Featuring the members of Whispering Sons in a circle, the frenetically shot visual easily captures the musical connection and conversations between each member, while allowing Kuppens and company to stomp about freely. Towards the end of the footage, Kuppens looks directly into the camera — and through the viewer, as though offering both intimate connection and a condemnation of herself and the viewer.

New Audio: Two from Acclaimed Belgian Post Punk Act Whispering Sons

Initially started in 2013 as a hobby for its then Leuven, Belgium-based founding members Kobe Linjen (guitar), Sander Hermans (synths), Lander Paesan (bass) and Sander Pelsmaekers (drums), the rising Brussels-based post punk act Whispering Sons have evolved a great deal. As the story goes, in search of a singer they recruited Fenne Kuppens, who at that point had been uploading covers of bands like Slowdive to Soundcloud. Already fostering deep ambition, she rigorously prepared. “I’d always wanted to sing in a band, but I never had friends who made music, they weren’t in my surroundings,” Kuppens recalls in press notes. “They were talking about this post-punk thing that I’d never heard of before, so I had to read into it. I could see myself in it, I felt the music.”

Leuven is a quiet, European university town and its mainstream-leaning music scene didn’t connect with Kuppens. But after a year studying abroad in Prague, where she immersed herself in the city’s DIY scene, Kuppens was galvanized — and inspired. “I made friends there who did things with their lives! There was a guy who had a DIY record label and who made music, all from his bedroom. I thought, if they can do this, why can’t we at least try?” Kuppens recalls. As soon as she returned, she relocated to Brussels. The remaining members of the band — Linjin, Hermans, Pelsmaekers and Paesan — later joined her. And immediately, the band quickly began honing their live show and sound.

Inspired by Xiu Xiu and Chinawoman, Kuppens distinctive, low register vocal style emerged early. “I started to feel more comfortable on stage, to express myself more rather than just singing a song,” she says. “I started feeling the music more, identifying more with the sounds and what I was doing.” Kuppens stage presence became known for being transfixing and trancelike, defined by compulsive and movements. “People have said it looks like I’m fighting my demons onstage, I guess there’s some truth in that,” she says.

During the summer of 2015, the band went into the studio to record material. “Fenne was really pushing us saying ‘We have to go for it, not just make another demo,” Whispering Sons’ Kobe Linjen recalls in press notes. The result was their goth-inspired debut EP, 2015’s Endless Party EP. Just a few months after its initial release through Wool-E-Tapes, the Brussels-based post-punk act won Humo’s Rock Rally, one of Belgium’s most prestigious music competitions. With the increased attention and accolades came bigger shows, bigger tours across Europe and larger crowds. “People started to expect things from us. We had to adapt quickly,” Linjen adds.

With the demands of a growing profile, the band began setting new, more ambitions targets for themselves. While writing new material for the increasingly longer sets their increased status required, they began to grow tired of the limits of post-punk and eagerly sought ways to push past them as much as possible. “We wanted to evolve, we wanted to attract larger audiences and not just play in one scene,” Kobe continues.

The Belgian post-punk quintet released two 7 inches, 2016’s “Performance”/”Strange Identities” and 2017’s “White Noise” — while going through a lineup change: the band’s friend Tuur Vanderborne replaced Paesan on bass. The band’s Micha Volders and Bert Vliegen-produced 2018 full-length debut Image was released through Cleopatra Records here in the States and Smile Records throughout the rest of the world. Recorded over a ten day period at Waimes, Belgium’s GAM Studios, Image found the band crafting a dark, brooding blend of experimental and frenetic post-punk that expressed the alienation, loneliness and anxiety that each individual member felt when they relocated to Brussels, Belgium’s largest city.

Image garnered praise from music press across the globe — and it amassed millions of streams across digital service providers. Before pandemic-related quarantines, lockdowns and restrictions, the Brussels-based post punk quintet was establishing themselves for a ferocious, must-see live show while sharing stages with the likes of The Murder Capital, Patti Smith, The Soft Moon, Croatian Armor and Editors. “We were very happy with Image, and at that point it was the best thing we could have made,” Fenne Kuppens says. “But from the moment we finished it we started to look at it in a critical way. ‘This is something we should do again. This is something we don’t like.’ So very quickly we found the direction we wanted to go in for the next album.”

Last summer, the members of Whispering Sons retreated to the Ardennes to work on new material. And in those writing sessions, the band took what they believed were the strongest part of their earliest work and refined them even further, with a focus on their greatest strength — sheer, unpretentious intensity. “We tried to create an album that’s more direct and more dynamic. More in your face,” Kuppens says.

Interestingly, Kuppens can trace the origins of the lyrics for the band’s highly-anticipated sophomore album Several Others from one sentence she’d scribbled in a notebook “Always be someone else instead of yourself.” “It’s terrible advice,” Kuppens says in press notes. “But it resonated with me and my personal ambitions.” She stared writing about her uncompromising perfectionism that although was partly responsible for the band’s initial success, was becoming stifling and overwhelming. “I was at a stage where it was becoming unhealthy. You always think things have to be better, that you can always do more.”

Recently, the band released two companion singles “Satantango” and “Surgery” off the forthcoming single. Both tracks see the band ambitiously pushing the ferocious and dirvintensity that helped win them international attention to the limits — while somehow delicately balancing fragility and vulnerability. Centered around anxious and propulsive instrumentation, both songs evokes unease of someone hopelessly trapped in stasis, possibly of their own making — and the slow-burning, creeping unease of someone struggling with their own role with their misery. Hell is often other people; but hell can be your own mind, too.

Along with the record, which is slated for a June 18, 2021 release through [PIAS] Recordings, the band will be releasing each single with a corresponding live session to be compiled and released as a live film.

New Video: Nicolas Michaux Releases a Slinky and Brooding Meditation on Economic Anxiousness and Uncertainty

I’ve written a bit about, Brussels-born singer/songwriter, guitarist and producer Nicolas Michaux over the past couple of months. Currently splitting his time between Brussels and Samsø, Denmark, Michaux, who writes and sings in both English and French, has received attention across Europe for crafting as sound that features elements of French chanson, 60s British rock and early New Wave, guided by a distinctly personal spirit and centered around lush and textured production.

Michaux’s sophomore album Amour Colére (which translates into English as Love Anger) is slated for a Friday release through Capitane Records. The album continues the Belgian artist’s ongoing collaboration with Morgan Vigilante — and as you may recall, Michaux and Capitane Record have released three singles off the album to rapturous critical applause: “Harvesters,” which was praised by The Line of Best Fit, “Nos Retrouvallies.” a lush and plaintive song that touches upon classic French chanson themes of love, grief, separation and reunion (either in this world or in the afterlife) and “Parrot,” arguably the album’s funkiest song, which sounds as though it drew influence from Fear of Music-era Talking Heads and Afro pop, while discussing the alienation and paralysis many of us feel in the midst of a morally bankrupt, stupid, cruel world that robs people of their humanity and decency.

“Enemies,” Amour Colére’s fourth single is a slinky and brooding New Wave number featuring shimmering reverb-drenched guitars, a sinuous bass line and a taut four-on-the four that subtly nods at Tom Petty’s “Refugee” but centered around a familiar (and age-old) economic and career-based anxiety and frustration. Much of our existence is deterministic and influenced by larger (and highly indifferent) forces — and the song points that out with a steely-eyed clarity. Interestingly, “Enemies” is influenced by the work of French sociologist Bernard Friot, a historian of social security and advocate for lifetime salary with the song finding Michaux reflecting upon Friot’s work and his own financial situation.

“When you turn 30 and have a child, being broke becomes less and less fun,” Michaux says in press notes. “At the time of writing, we were looking for a place to live and the violence of the housing market took me by the throat. In writing about slavery, Marguerite Yourcenar said that a regime is often most excessive in its cruelty and injustice in its last days. I sometimes get the impression that it’s the same kind of historical scenario we are currently experiencing with the slow agony of capitalism.”

Directed by Thomas de Hemptinne and Nicolas Michaux, the recently released video for “Enemies” is brooding, surreal and impressionistic visual that captures the anxious uncertainty, the loneliness and fear of both the musicians, who worked together during pandemic-related lockdowns and simultaneously that of the viewer.

New Video: Follow Star Crossed Lovers in a Cinematic and Surreal Visual for Nicolas Michaux’s “Nos Retrouvailles”

Nicolas Michaux is a Brussells-born singer/songwriter, guitarist and producer, who currently splits his time between Brussels and Samsø, Denmark. Writing and singing material in both English and French, Michaux has received attention for a sound that meshes elements of French chanson, 60s British rock and early New Wave among others while guided by a distinctly personal spirit — and paired with a lush and textured production. 

Earlier this year, Michaux released “Harvesters,” which received praise from The Linen of Best Fit and marked the first bit of original material from the Belgian-born singer/songwriter, guitarist and producer since 2016’s À la via, à la mort. Building upon the momentum of “Harvesters,” Michaux’s last single “Nos Retrouvailles” continues his ongoing collaboration with Morgan Vigilante. Centered around a lush arrangement featuring shimmering Rhodes, reverb-drenched guitar, a propulsive rhythm section and Michaux’s achingly plaintive vocals, “Nos Retrouvailles” is a charming yet nostalgic track that’s decidedly influenced by French chanson as it touches upon themes of love, grief, separation and reunion — either in this world or in the afterlife. 

“I began writing this song in 2016 when I first went to Samsø,” Michaux says in press notes about the song. “It was sunny in the tiny courtyard of the house that we were renting at the time. I finished it three years later when I returned to Samsø Island and made an acoustic version before producing several months later the version which figures on the album.

“It’s a bit mysterious, the song, but also well balanced. I hardly feel I wrote it. It was always there. Discovered rather than composed. It lends itself to several interpretations and that’s what I like about it. It has more than one voice.”

Directed by Simon Vanrie, the recently released video for “Nos Retrouvailles” was filmed in an industrial park in Belgium. Starring Michaux and Amadine Laval and Habib Ben Tanfous as two star-crossed lovers — and throughout parallels are drawn between the pastoral imagery of the song’s lyrics, the video’s star-crossed lovers and a small bit of natural, bursting from the industrial wasteland with the end result being of a fever dream of longing and loss.