Comment: French artist oppidum is undoubtedly one of the best electronic music artists out there. He was featured here two years ago with his single Genius Loci, and even then you could tell he was different. Now he’s back with a new, self-produced, EP, Vignemale, whose lead single is the superb Murmuration. Vignemale is one of the highest peaks in the Pyrenees, and the EP is the story of the five-day journey to reach it. oppidum’s trademark is creating instrumental downtempo electronica tracks that combine acoustic instruments with field recordings, and you will find plenty of that in Murmuration as well.
The acoustic guitar tones in this hypnotic track are phenomenal. I feel I could listen to Murmuration all day on repeat.
Comment: The punk-rock genre is having some kind of renaissance in France with talented bands like Back On Earth and today’s featured band: Atlas For Home. This quartet has been around since at least 2014 but “Keep Going” is their first single in four years, so don’t feel bad if you’re into this type of music and hadn’t heard of them. The good news is that they’re planning to release a new EP this year, with this catchy single being just an appetizer. The band’s new leitmotiv is to create the perfect blend between mid-2000s pop-punk, like Blink, and modern pop-punk, like Neck Deep. It’s an ambitious goal, but judging by “Keep Going”, they know what they’re doing. Give them a chance.
A little over a year ago, I featured French #punkrock band Back On Earthand since then they have released track after track with remarkable consistency, both in frequency and quality. Just recently, they dropped a small little EP called Anybody that consists of three previously released songs and a brand new one, the eponymous track. All four songs are really good but I particularly liked Anybody. This song is the whole package: it got a captivating melody, flawless production, and lyrics worth writing home about. If you have ever questioned the purpose of everything, this song is for you.
Today is a great day for music (and it is a Friday, which is always a plus). We got new albums from The Naked and Famous, Neon Trees and Neck Deep, just to name a few; and you may have heard about some “folk” artist named Taylor Swift who dropped a record too (and here is what I think about it). This entry, however, is about a little song from a different EP that also got released today without the same amount of fanfare. I hope it does not get lost in the shuffle because it certainly deserves your attention (at least if you are into ambient/chill-out music).
Oppidum, which is Latin for –roughly translated– town, is the pseudonym of a French musician who creates hypnotic and unique arrangements mixing organic and instrumental sounds. Genius Loci, from Oppidum‘s brand new EP: Amulette, is a perfect example of that. It got some uncommon sounds for music but also a melodic cadence that transports you into places you will not want to return from. Give it a try on the mixtapes below (by the way, please don’t forget to follow them if you like them) and, if you agree with me, then check the rest of the EP out on your favorite streaming service.
You probably know Mélanie Laurent for her famous role in Quentin Tarantino‘s film Inglorious Basterds or from any of her many other films (with my favourite one being this one), but it is a lesser-known fact that she’s also a musician. In fact, back in 2011 she released her first and only (so far) album, En t’attendant, to moderate success. It was basically a French pop album, with many of those pop songs co-written with Damien Rice. However, the reason why I decided to highlight Mélanie’s album for this week’s Throwback Thursday, is because of the two wonderful piano solos that open and close the record: Début and Fin.
I decided to feature here Début, but I might just as well have chosen Fin. Both songs are incredibly beautiful and delicate, the type of tracks you can listen on repeat without getting tired of them. Unfortunately, there is no “official” video on Youtube, but you can listen to Début on the mixtapes below (or the one on the sidebar here). Enjoy!
If you listened to Back On Earth without knowing anything else about the band, you would be tempted to bet on that they are a band from South California whose members spend the time surfing when they are not playing gigs. I really doubt you would guess they are actually from Paris, France. I, for one, would have lost that bet.
The band plays perfectly good punk rock (or pop-punk, if you prefer to call it that way) and was formed in 2009. However, they were on a hiatus from 2014 until last year, and they have been pretty active since then. Save Me is a fun and extremely catchy (especially that chorus) tune that the band released earlier this year. If Back On Earth continues to release songs like this (and they have plans to put a new song out in July), their future looks very bright.
Please give them a try if you weren’t a fan already, I promise you that it will be fun.