The Blue Pool
I spend a lot of my time, looking at blue…
French chanteuse Addie is blue, she writes and sings of blue. “Deeply present in every note of my piano, this colour was what I was running from” she wrote of the extended process of creating ‘Leitmotiv’. “The colour was speaking to me about loneliness and the hypersensitivity of a hard world.”
Above which hangs the moon. Madame de la Luna. She is elegant romanticism, mystery, mood and tranquility. She is there for all of us, we all sleep under the same moon.
Evasive. Unreachably cool.
For them as want a label, Leitmotiv is acoustic blue pop. La cello chanson.
A work of elegance, charm, bewitching mystery and longing
From the first notes of Lilla’s Butterfly, Addie’s romantically beautiful piano engages and enchants. Fragile melodies that hang in the deep indigo sky like stars. As gentle and tender as the subject. As inspiring as falling in love.
I’m a Moon is similarly composed of repeated piano phrases, this time set to a subtle percussion track and held together with Solene Lofredi’s soulful cello. Perfectly understated, and therein lies the fundamental beauty of the entire album.
I’m a shadow lover
I need to explore the darkness
Addie’s breathy vocal, at times stretched to its fragile limit (as on Beautiful Pain) is a mark of the commitment and passion she has for her work and creates a genuine charm that pervades every track.
At different times and on different occasions, Leitmotiv brings to mind Kate Bush’s last album 50 Words For Snow (especially the wonderful Lake Tahoe), various pieces by Galway’s Mary Coughlan (in terms of composition and delivery), the naive expressionism of Little Annie Bandez and the fragile sensitivity of Cleveland’s Baby Dee. But her style is essentially rooted in the European Chanson, and in that she encapsulates beautifully all the elegance of singers like Barbara and the tonality, phrasing (and look) of Poland’s Ewa Demarczyk.
But this is to compare, and comparison is unfair. Think of it more as ‘further listening recommendations’.
That’s the mark of a talented and engaging artist after all. Not only to lead you into their world, but to reveal doorways into others and invite you onto a journey with them.
From my point of view, if Addie calls to mind all these women whose work I love, then she has a very special talent indeed.
The confessional and challenging I’m A Moon and the relatively upbeat optimism of Clarity.
Also the album’s lead track, and the one getting all the streaming hits – Et si on se taisait un peu. Like the best torch songs, the language of the lyrics is a secondary consideration. It matters not precisely what she says. The message is in the songwriting, the presentation, and the conviction of the singer
Artists like Addie don’t come along very often, and albums that I play endlessly for several weeks even less so. Once in a very blue moon, in fact.
But what if we were, as she suggests, silent a little?
What would we hear and where would we go?
Dive in, listen and be enchanted…
LEITMOTIV is available now on CD and download from Bandcamp