I received an e-mail from a mysterious Alain Renault asking me to review their French band, Lamia. This is not to be confused with an Australian band of the same name. Initially, my expectations were low, as I have been sent samples in the past by artists seeking fame/notoriety through another site I used to run, most of which were not good (a lot of the bad and the ugly, though).
It just so happens that Lamia is quite the exception. I am overwhelmed by the beauty of this music. This is apparently their debut LP, entitled "Into the Number of the Nameless Tides." Think of a cross between Feist, Zero 7, and Siouxsie and the Banshees. Lamia features gorgeous, seductive vocals by Isabelle Refouni and instruments and programming by Alain Rennes. This is not a strictly electronic outfit and the inclusion of violin, guitar, keyboard, bass, and drums on different traks adds depth to the music. If that doesn't sound intriguing enough, the lyrics are derived from 19th centrury romantic poetry, including poems by Lord Byron, Emily Dickinson, John Keats, Percy Bysse Shelley, and Algernon Charles Swinburne. The album has a distinctive, beautiful sound; I remember getting the same feeling when I heard Sarah McLachlan's 'Posession' and Delerium's 'Karma' for the first time.
Not to say that there aren't any rough edges in the music, like the overlong, avant-garde 'Wake The Serpent Not'. However, I can easily overlook any deficiencies based on the strength of tracks like 'When We Two Parted' and 'A Match'.
If these guys make it big, you heard it here first. You might even hear them on Pure Moods, Vol. 37 a few years from now (hopefully not).
- Lord Byron:
- When We Two Parted
- On This Day (2 min clip)
- She Walks In Beauty (2 min clip)
- It Was Not Death (2 min clip)
- The Soul (2 min clip)
- La Belle dame sans Merçi
Percy Bysse Shelley
- The Waning Moon (2 min clip)
- Wake The Serpent Not
Algernon Charles Swinburne
- A Match (2 min clip)
- A Reiver's Neck-verse (2 min clip)
To buy the CD Note: the link is translated with Babelfish, because I assume most of you no parlez vous Français.