LE COUP DU PARAPLUIE - Philosophie, bien-être & crimes passionnels

Le Coup du Parapluie - Philosophie, bien-être & crimes passionnels

10 songs
56:32 minutes
***** ***


The Belgian indie scene has sprouted some well known bands which mostly come from the three major cities Brussels (Ghinzu), Antwerp (dEUS, Zita Swoon) and Ghent (Absynthe Minded, Das Pop, Soulwax). The Walloon region can’t really show up such an impressive roster of artists, making one wander if there is not only a language barrier, but also one of cultural creativity at work. But maybe this will change now with Le Coup du Parapluie, a guitar-bass-drums three-piece from Charleroi, Liège and Namur, the three most important cities from the French speaking territories.

There is not much to tell about the band as neither their homepage nor their Myspace site contain any enlightening information. This attitude of sparseness can only mean that Philosophie, bien-être & crimes passionnels is their debut album. The ten songs featured on this nearly one hour long record vary from short, wild tracks to longer, more sprawling elaborations, reaching their zenith in the middle part consisting of the eight minute long instrumental Le coup dans la bergerie followed by the one minute longer La chasse à la baleine. Even though half of the tracks have French titles, the lyrics are seemingly all in English.

It’s impressive how the three Walloons manage to create a full sound with only three instruments, although occasional electronic effects add a certain futuristic touch. The band moves definitely in alternative rock territories, but they have a strong sense for experimental structures which is not only displayed on their more epic material. With hints of noise rock and sometimes vast post rock guitar tapestries, Le Coup du Parapluie distance themselves from the more commercial minded artists in the genre. The only comparison I can come up with is The Mars Volta who have a similar unorthodox approach full of unexpected twists and turns.

The packaging may be a little on the frugal side, but the music makes up for that. The production is dense yet transparent, making sure that there are never any bleak moments, the vocals have a certain psychedelic quality, and before you even know it, the album comes to an end, leaving you with a feeling of satisfaction in the gut region. Philosophie, bien-être & crimes passionnels is an impressive debut of a very promising band. At times you might wish that some parts would stand out even stronger, and even repeated listening will make it hard to discern the different tracks, although this doesn’t change my prior statement that the music is amazing, from the first second to the last. Still unsigned, Le Coup du Parapluie might become very big if the right kind of label takes some interest in them.

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