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IMPORTANT (Please read to avoid confusion):
Some items below may be tagged with a bold, red, all-caps "out of print/unavailable" notice. This does NOT mean that all other items not so tagged are, in fact, in stock -- or for that matter, in print and available, though there's a good chance they are. Some folks get confused on this point, and we can see why, so please read this for further clarification and other important before-you-order information. Unlike some mailorder websites, we don't have an electronic inventory system linked to our site, so you can't be sure of what we actually have or don't have in stock at any given moment without asking us -- please email our mailorder department for availability status -- or better yet, just go ahead and place your order using our shopping cart function and we'll get back to you with the status of each item. If you have general non-mailorder questions, email the store.


album cover A, DOMINIQUE Auguri (Lithium) cd 18.98
Monsieur Dominique A est un chanteur francais fantastique et nous aimons beaucoup la musique qu'il fait. How's that? Seriously Dominique A has a beautiful, distinct voice and on Auguri it is positively enveloping. His Remue album left many breathless and his others have pretty much the same effect.

A, DOMINIQUE Remue (Lithium) cd 14.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Still more awesome French pop from the Lithium label. Dark, shambling minor key laments with spoken/sung French vocals. Shimmering guitars, muted trumpets and skittering drums. (We also have three of his other records, all of them great.)

album cover AQUARIUS BUTTONS 2 x 1" buttons 1.00
Hey, we just got another batch of AQ buttons made up...
Spread the word! Show the world your true aQ colors! COOL COOL COOL aQ buttons, now in 6 different vibrant color combinations. 5 new color combos (blue on pink, red on dark grey, dark blue on blue, orange on black, and yellowish green on dark green) and a popular one we had previously (brown on yellow).
TWO FOR $1!!! Colors are random, but buy enough and you'll be guaranteed to get 'em all! And of course all feature our spiffy James Gang style logo!! So stylish!

album cover BARDOT, BRIGITTE Love Is My Profession (El Records) cd 16.98
Not actually a Brigitte Bardot record...it's just music from films she was in...kind of so-so.

album cover BARDOT, BRIGITTE Show (Magic) cd 23.00
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Some of you young'uns might not be familiar with this mighty blonde sexpot, but she sure set her fair share of hearts and loins aflame back in the sixties. Va va voom! She was perhaps less known for her singing than for her voluptuous physique, but she did indeed coo a few tunes back then, and did quite a fine job at it too. We just got this reissued Show album, and it showcases Bardot in all of her sweet and sexy glory. Kicky rocked up tunes, lusty slow orchestral ballads and saucy funky numbers, she did it all. This reissue includes the original fifteen album tracks plus four bonus cuts. Fab!
MPEG Stream: "Harley Davidson"
MPEG Stream: "Oh Qu'il Est Vilain"

album cover BETSCH, BERTRAND BB Sides (Lithium) cd 14.98
While Bertrand Betsch's lovely previous album, La Soupe a la Grimace, was a sensitive singer songwriter affair, with heartbreakingly pretty hooks and whispered vocals, this record features the addition of 'beats' so it's a lot heavier and Bertrand rises to the occasion -- his voice is even more tortured, the guitar a bit more dissonant than before. Some of you will love the anguish, some will find his new direction distasteful, so listen to the soundclips and decide for yourself.
RealAudio clip: "La Folie des Hommes"
RealAudio clip: "J'entends plus la guitare"

BETSCH, BERTRAND La soupe a la grimace. (Lithium) cd 14.98
Wonderful! This French singer/songwriter's emotional, serious songs are delivered in a breathy, delicate manner that will DEFINITELY appeal to fans of Belle & Sebastian, although Bertrand's unique style isn't as sticky sweet. Highly recommended!

album cover BIRKIN , JANE & SERGE GAINSBOURG s/t (Je T'Aime....Moi Non Plus) (Light In The Attic) cd 14.98
We'd be hard pressed to think of a more romantically beautiful and sexually provocative song, that doesn't fall prey to cloying sentiment or cheap thrills, than Serge Gainsbourg and Jane Birkin's "Je T'Aime...Moi Non Plus". But apparently the Pope at the time didn't agree and universally condemned the song which only garnered more international attention for the song and the couple who sang it. When will the Catholic Church ever learn?
This 1969 eponymous record is another classic reissue in the Gainsbourg catalog from Light In The Attic which also features the amazing songs "69 Annee Erotique" and "Jane B.", a french pop re-working of Chopin's Prelude No.4 in E minor. Sensual, playfully lurid, groovy, and albeit a bit corny at times (especially where they timely delve into pre-war popular song nostalgia), it's definitely a document of a controversial couple in love in full view of the world, and they're playing up the show with as much verve and joie de vivre as they can muster, which for the coolest of cool couples is one hell of a lot! Both the cd and the lp include liner notes with lyrics in French and English, original drawings and a telling interview about the recording with Jane Birkin herself! The 180 gram lp comes with a bonus 7" and a never before seen Serge and Jane comic drawn by David Lasky.
MPEG Stream: "Je T'Aime....Moi Non Plus"
MPEG Stream: "69 AnnŽe ƒrotique"
MPEG Stream: "Jane B"

album cover BIRKIN , JANE & SERGE GAINSBOURG s/t (Je T'Aime....Moi Non Plus) (Light In The Attic) lp 21.00
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
We'd be hard pressed to think of a more romantically beautiful and sexually provocative song, that doesn't fall prey to cloying sentiment or cheap thrills, than Serge Gainsbourg and Jane Birkin's "Je T'Aime...Moi Non Plus". But apparently the Pope at the time didn't agree and universally condemned the song which only garnered more international attention for the song and the couple who sang it. When will the Catholic Church ever learn?
This 1969 eponymous record is another classic reissue in the Gainsbourg catalog from Light In The Attic which also features the amazing songs "69 Annee Erotique" and "Jane B.", a french pop re-working of Chopin's Prelude No.4 in E minor. Sensual, playfully lurid, groovy, and albeit a bit corny at times (especially where they timely delve into pre-war popular song nostalgia), it's definitely a document of a controversial couple in love in full view of the world, and they're playing up the show with as much verve and joie de vivre as they can muster, which for the coolest of cool couples is one hell of a lot! Both the cd and the lp include liner notes with lyrics in French and English, original drawings and a telling interview about the recording with Jane Birkin herself! The 180 gram lp comes with a bonus 7" and a never before seen Serge and Jane comic drawn by David Lasky.
MPEG Stream: "Je T'Aime....Moi Non Plus"
MPEG Stream: "69 AnnŽe ƒrotique"
MPEG Stream: "Jane B"

album cover BIRKIN, JANE Di Doo Dah (Light In The Attic) cd 16.98
Also here now on cd!
After the amazing reissue of the 1969 Jane Birkin & Serge Gainsbourg album, Light In The Attic gives us this reissue of Jane Birkin's proper solo debut from 1973, Di Doo Dah. Of course, Serge and his producer in crime, Jean-Claude Vannier make their presence felt, the latter especially in the arrangements that begin soft and low-key, but build with orchestral nuance and grace. Di Doo Dah has less of the mod-pop feel of the earlier record with Serge and is more lush and intimate, Birkin's non-native french singing is amazingly natural and fluid. Like Francoise Hardy's great La Question album we reviewed awhile back, Di Doo Dah is that perfect transitional record from youthful hipness to something more true and deeper lasting.
MPEG Stream: "Di Doo Dah"
MPEG Stream: "C'Est La Vie Qui Veut ‚a"
MPEG Stream: "La Decadance (bonus)"

album cover BIRKIN, JANE Di Doo Dah (Light In The Attic) 2lp 22.00
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
After the amazing reissue of the 1969 Jane Birkin & Serge Gainsbourg album, Light In The Attic gives us this reissue of Jane Birkin's proper solo debut from 1973, Di Doo Dah. Of course, Serge and his producer in crime, Jean-Claude Vannier make their presence felt, the latter especially in the arrangements that begin soft and low-key, but build with orchestral nuance and grace. Di Doo Dah has less of the mod-pop feel of the earlier record with Serge and is more lush and intimate, Birkin's non-native French singing is amazingly natural and fluid. Like Francoise Hardy's great La Question album we reviewed awhile back, Di Doo Dah is that perfect transitional record from youthful hipness to something more true and deeper lasting.
MPEG Stream: "Di Doo Dah"
MPEG Stream: "C'Est La Vie Qui Veut Ca"

BIRKIN, JANE & SERGE GAINSBOURG s/t (Philips) cd 16.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Reissue of the classic and highly controversial (at the time) record by Serge Gainsbourg and his wife, Jane Birkin. This CD contains some of Gainsbourg's (arguably) best works, from the sexually charged "Je T'aime Moi Non Plus" and "69 Annee Erotique" to playful classics ("Les Sucettes", "Elisa") to the beautifully orchestrated ("L'anamour", "Manon" & "Sous le Soleil Exactement"). Definitely a gem in the vast ouvre of Serge Gainsbourg!

BREUT, FRANCOIZ s/t (Lithium) cd 14.98
Bad Seeds or Tindersticks like songs with sultry French female vocals. Fellow Parisian Diminique A plays guitar, bass & keyboards all over the place. Very, very nice.

album cover BREUT, FRANCOIZ Vingt A Trente Mille Jours (Lithium) cd 14.98
Francoiz Breut is the modern Brigitte Fontaine, with a healthy dose of Cat Power thrown in. Acoustic loops, soaring strings and skittering drums all frame absolutely beautiful songs, full of emotion and intensity. Breut's voice is husky and deep, the lyrics all in French, making the songs dark and dreamy and romantic.
RealAudio clip: "Derriere Le Grand Filtre"
RealAudio clip: "L'Origine du Monde"

album cover BURGALAT, BERTRAND Meets A.S Dragon (Tricatel) cd 16.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
More ultra suave pop from this smooth French gent who really should consider writing a few chapters in the how-to book of euro-flair. A most highly regarded and highly influential man of many hats in the hip lounge jet set, Monsieur Burgalat certainly has taught those Air boys a thing or two. But who is A.S Dragon and what happens when he meets them? Well, that's simply the name of the band backing him up on this record (who even have their own theme!), and actually it seems things get spiced up a bit. Less cocktail space age pad, and much more upbeat, swingin', guitar-driven retro-poppiness. Full of his handsome smooth vocals, but do keep an ear out for the occasional odd deep vocal turn here and there though. Still very groovy and dance-y though with its funky bass and organ lines. A perfect rocked up accompaniment to the recent Danger Diabolik soundtrack. Aaah, and it all comes complete with an adoring, applauding audience to boot. On his very own label.
RealAudio clip: "Sugar"
RealAudio clip: "A.S Dragon"
RealAudio clip: "Tears Of A Clown"

album cover BURGALAT, BERTRAND Portrait-Robot (Hit Thing / Tricatel) cd 15.98
The euro-pop sounds of composer / solo crooner Monsieur Bertand Burgalat pleases many ears around the globe. Swirling strings, funky guitar and basslines, playful keyboards, horns, woodwinds, swooning male and female choruses -- it's charming in oh so many ways, elaborate and suave but not without levity and wit. If we have any complaints about Portrait-Robot, it would be that when on occasion Burgalat opts for programmed drum beats (versus live acoustic ones) such as on the song "Ripples" they're a bit... well, clunkily robotic and too upfront in the mix. When you take into consideration the album's title, you wonder if maybe be that was his intention, but it's oddly jarring when you take in the rest of the carefully crafted and composed smooth operatin' affair. The album features 19 lounge-ready songs, plus 2 bonus tracks and a video for "Spring Isn't Fair".
MPEG Stream: "Ripples"
MPEG Stream: "Spring Isn't Fair"

album cover BURGALAT, BERTRAND The Sssound of Mmmusic (Emperor Norton) cd 16.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
This highly influential, euro-lounge-pop producer, composer, arranger, label owner (Tricatel) and performer extraordinaire finally sees the U.S. release of his solo debut (with three bonus tracks unavailable on the European version). Playful '60s flair a-plenty. He's worked with and/or remixed an eclectic array of artists including Air, Ladytron, Mick Harvey, April March (who actually pops up on this album to sing "Tsom"), Nick Cave, Einsturzende Neubauten, and Depeche Mode. Actually you may already be familiar with his connection to some of these artists via the groovy compilation "The Genius of Bertrand Burgalat" from last year. 17 fluffy flights of fancy evoking Bain de Soleil visions with a suave and glistening sheen. Fans of Air, Serge Gainsbourg, Kid Loco and ah yes, the cocktail hour just might find the debonair Monsieur Burgalat rather appealing.
RealAudio clip: "Tsom"

album cover CERRONE 3: Supernature (Because Music) lp+cd 28.00
Rad, this "disco-PROG masterpiece" (to quote our own review, below) now reissued on vinyl - which comes with a cd version as well. Here's what we said before when we listed it on cd alone:
We don't do this often, but sometimes, the easiest thing is just to link to a YouTube video. Especially 'cause it's what got us interested in tracking down this reissue in the first place! Made us kind of obsessed, actually. You'll see/hear why if you go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QgGK4qBTwpw&ob=av2n, and check out the psychedelic video version of this album's title track. (For those who just want a quick idea, take a look at the album cover operating room scene, that's in the vid, complete with people dressed up in disturbing animal masks, a Rolls Royce driving through the desert, naked ladies in the jungle, and, well, just watch it...)
So, Jean-Marc Cerrone was/is a French dance music producer and badass drummer (elsewhere on YouTube you can see him live in concert, kicking out the massive drum solos). The more disco-savvy among us here had heard of him, he's up there with Giorgio Moroder in the Euro-Disco pantheon. And Supernature, from 1977, his 3rd album, is the jam. A disco-PROG masterpiece. The title track starts things off, the one that crazy video's for, and dominates, being almost ten minutes long in its album version. An epic. No ordinary club fare here, on the surface maybe, but the disco diva vocals (lyrics by Lene Lovich!) are about some dystopian sci-fi scenario wherein twisted science is turning men into monstrous beasts (which explains - sort of - some of the video's surreal imagery), these mutants rising up against their masters. Hauntingly, she sings lines like "how can I explain, things are different today, darkness all around, and no one makes a sound..." Woah, downer disco. It's pretty dark, and weird, and the thump thump thump of the music gets that way too, with some fat synth bass riffing at about the six minute mark that brings this into imaginary Magma doing disco territory, almost. Cerrone sure puts his state of the art ARP Odyssey Mk III to good use here. The track ends with hint of 2001's "Also Sprach Zarathustra", that's how epic this is. The rest of the side maintains the mood, "Supernature" segueing seamlessly into Cerrone's solo spot "Sweet Drums", his insistent beats heavily effected and spaced out, and that's followed by the more blissfully eerie electronics of "In The Smoke", which could be from a Goblin soundtrack.
Side two is the brighter side... More typical fusion-funked Euro-Disco anthems, all three songs with "Love" in the title ("Give Me Love", "Love Is Here", "Love Is The Answer"), great stuff though, top-knotch! Lush, lively dancefloor fodder for sure.
So, recommended to fans of Zombi, Goblin, Moroder, and the recently departed Donna Summer.
MPEG Stream: "Supernature"
MPEG Stream: "In The Smoke"
MPEG Stream: "Give Me Love"

album cover CHALARD, JACKY Je Suis Vivant, Mais J'aipeur De Gilbert Deflez (B-Music / Finders Keepers) cd 15.98
Boy, were we looking forward to this: A strange 1974 French sci-fi based concept album that claims comparisons to both Alain Goraguer (La Planete Sauvage) and Jean-Claude Vannier (L'Enfant Assassin Des Mouches, Melody Nelson), by some composer we had never heard of, Jacky Chalard, perhaps originally made under the assumed identity Gilbert Deflez (the booklet has the puzzling backstory). We were blown away by the opening number, "L'Agonie", almost fulfilling the promise of the B-Music folks' claims. But then almost all the following tracks are either spoken word, or strange radio plays in French (sort of in the same wacky spirit as Les Maledictus Sound), which we wouldn't mind normally, except the spoken stuff is on almost every track on the record, and after awhile, we want to just hear the backing music alone, because it IS so good! Occasionally, there is a French woman singing which is nice and there's a couple of Massiera-ish disco pop numbers, but overall, the narrative aspects becomes just a bit tedious. At least it's in French, though, that helps. We're sure this is a must have for some folks who dig the stranger realms of french prog-pop, but we can't recommend it as highly as La Planete Sauvage, Jean-Paul Massiera, or Jean-Claude Vannier.
MPEG Stream: "L'Agonie"
MPEG Stream: "La Collecte Des Couers"
MPEG Stream: "Si Je T'Offrais Une Branche D'Amour"
MPEG Stream: "Pollution"
MPEG Stream: "Super Man - Super Cool"

album cover CHALARD, JACKY Je Suis Vivant, Mais J'aipeur De Gilbert Deflez (B-Music / Finders Keepers) lp 26.00
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Now available on vinyl.
Boy, were we looking forward to this: A strange 1974 French sci-fi based concept album that claims comparisons to both Alain Goraguer (La Planete Sauvage) and Jean-Claude Vannier (L'Enfant Assassin Des Mouches, Melody Nelson), by some composer we had never heard of, Jacky Chalard, perhaps originally made under the assumed identity Gilbert Deflez (the booklet has the puzzling backstory). We were blown away by the opening number, "L'Agonie", almost fulfilling the promise of the B-Music folks' claims. But then almost all the following tracks are either spoken word, or strange radio plays in French (sort of in the same wacky spirit as Les Maledictus Sound), which we wouldn't mind normally, except the spoken stuff is on almost every track on the record, and after awhile, we want to just hear the backing music alone, because it IS so good! Occasionally, there is a French woman singing which is nice and there's a couple of Massiera-ish disco pop numbers, but overall, the narrative aspects becomes just a bit tedious. At least it's in French, though, that helps. We're sure this is a must have for some folks who dig the stranger realms of french prog-pop, but we can't recommend it as highly as La Planete Sauvage, Jean-Paul Massiera, or Jean-Claude Vannier.
MPEG Stream: "L'Agonie"
MPEG Stream: "La Collecte Des Couers"
MPEG Stream: "Si Je T'Offrais Une Branche D'Amour"
MPEG Stream: "Pollution"
MPEG Stream: "Super Man - Super Cool"

album cover CHALARD, JACKY Superman, Supercool (Cache Cache ) 12" 14.98

album cover CHARLEBOIS, ROBERT Avec Louise Forestier (Unidisc Music ) cd 14.98
These Unidisc Music reissues aren't necessarily new, but they are new to us here at AQ, and we've found them to be quite intriguing and enjoyable listens. On this 1968 album it's clear that Robert Charlebois' collaborative work with Louise Forestier were just as high on dramatics (and at times as loopy) as her solo albums... if not more so. The chemistry between Quebecois artists Charlebois and Forestier is not unlike two old friends getting together to bend a musical elbow over a glass of wine (or two or three). Heck, on songs such as "C.P.R. Blues" and "Egg Generation" they get downright unhinged -- lively frolics that verge on the mad or chaotic. You also get a duet version of the song "California" which appears as a solo-sung number on Forestier's Avec Enzymes album. Great!
MPEG Stream: "C.P.R. Blues"
MPEG Stream: "Egg Generation"

album cover CLASSICAL M Bad Guys: The Complete Collection (Pacemaker / Lion Productions) cd 15.98
Nope, never heard of 'em before either. Glad we have now though! The oddly-named Classical M were a psych-pop trio (consisting of brothers Guy and Andre Maruani, and Henri Bratter) who flourished in France circa 1966-1970. Well, maybe flourished isn't quite the word. They did play on TV, and opened for Steppenwolf once, but only sold a meager number of the handful of singles they released, before heading off in separate musical or non-musical directions and disbanding. A crime really, since they were so good!! I mean, the singles tracks they left behind, as documented on this collection, are awesome. Songs like "Love, Love Is There", "Music Of The Rain", "Gog Magog" (with lyrics originally written with hopes of King Crimson using 'em!), "Such A Lovely Voice", and others are a '60s psych pop fan's dream. "Such A Lovely Voice" could be a lost Colin Blunstone/Zombies classic, and there's also a definite, well-put-to-use Beatles influence at play here. These tracks are intimate and adventurous, with Guy's strong voice and superb psychedelic instrumentation including flute, 12-string guitar, oud, violin, congas, a variety of exotic instruments.
It's interesting to note in Guy Maruani's confessional liner notes that they didn't do drugs, or even smoke or drink. "Music being for us perfectly psychedelic in and of itself". Hear hear. This disc convinces.
Vincent Tornatore of Lion Productions is especially thrilled about this release (saying Classical M are "perhaps the best, and certainly the most intriguing French band of all time"). Not sure if we can go that far (ahem...Magma) but we can see why he got so excited n' enthused when these tracks showed up out of the blue, the former band members soliciting a label for a reissue. Blown away is probably the size of it. What loveliness! What atmosphere! Press play and immediately be enthralled by the melody, the melancholy, the creativity this band displays.
Lion did an nice job packaging this, with a thick booklet of lyrics, notes on each song, photos, and reminiscences. There's 24 tracks total -- singles, demos, rehearsal recordings, live stuff. And the first ten or so with the English lyrics are the truly crucial cuts, almost all of 'em amazing... but nothing on here isn't at least enjoyable, the rest of the disc ranging from groovy, orchestrated French-language "chanson-pop" to ethnic improv stuff. Too bad they never got to do a real, entire album, but we're still lucky to have these tracks. Highly recommended.
MPEG Stream: "Love, Love Is There"
MPEG Stream: "Bad Guy"

album cover CLOTHILDE French Swinging Mademoiselle 1967 (Born Bad) cd 16.98
Another awesome French pop chanteuse gets resurrected from obscurity, thanks to the Born Bad label. Clothilde (whom we first heard through those awesome Sixties Girls and Swinging Mademoiselle comps of femme French pop) was the stage name of Elizabeth Beauvais, the daughter of an actress and writer who, despite wanting to follow her mother into the acting world, was pushed instead into the music business by producer Germinal Tenas.
Tenas, a producer known for arrangements involving unusual instrumentation, signed her to Vogue Records in the mid-sixties and rechristened her after the beloved medieval Queen and Saint instrumental in bringing Catholicism to France. Clothilde only recorded two eps for the Vogue label in 1967 (both captured here) before becoming fed up by the business and leaving it for good. Which really is tragic, because these are some of the most infectious French pop tracks we have heard in a while with swinging arrangements peppered with marimbas, flutes, violins, bells and Farfisas. Clothilde co-wrote a couple of tracks herself and they were noted for their shocking (at the time) use of sexual double entendres, perhaps adding to the sex-kitten image she really didn't want to have. Thus an untimely end of what could have been a promising singing career. Like so many French pop obscurities, we're thankful for the labor of love that goes into making sure these great tracks see the light of day once again!
MPEG Stream: "Fallait Pas ƒcraser La Queue Du Chat"
MPEG Stream: "Je T'ai Voulu Et Je T'ai Bien Eu"

album cover CLOTHILDE French Swinging Mademoiselle 1967 (Born Bad) lp 19.98
Also on vinyl!! Another awesome French pop chanteuse gets resurrected from obscurity, thanks to the Born Bad label. Clothilde (whom we first heard through those awesome Sixties Girls and Swinging Mademoiselle comps of femme French pop) was the stage name of Elizabeth Beauvais, the daughter of an actress and writer who, despite wanting to follow her mother into the acting world, was pushed instead into the music business by producer Germinal Tenas.
Tenas, a producer known for arrangements involving unusual instrumentation, signed her to Vogue Records in the mid-sixties and rechristened her after the beloved medieval Queen and Saint instrumental in bringing Catholicism to France. Clothilde only recorded two eps for the Vogue label in 1967 (both captured here) before becoming fed up by the business and leaving it for good. Which really is tragic, because these are some of the most infectious French pop tracks we have heard in a while with swinging arrangements peppered with marimbas, flutes, violins, bells and Farfisas. Clothilde co-wrote a couple of tracks herself and they were noted for their shocking (at the time) use of sexual double entendres, perhaps adding to the sex-kitten image she really didn't want to have. Thus an untimely end of what could have been a promising singing career. Like so many French pop obscurities, we're thankful for the labor of love that goes into making sure these great tracks see the light of day once again!
MPEG Stream: "Fallait Pas ƒcraser La Queue Du Chat"
MPEG Stream: "Je T'ai Voulu Et Je T'ai Bien Eu"

COMELADE, PASCAL The Slang Of Noise (Les Disques du Soleil et de l'Acier) cd 16.98
Cult French songwriter/soundtrack composer Comelade's new album, on which he's joined by P.J. Harvey for two songs and Faust's Jean-Herve Peron for one (a remake of the Faust classic "The Sad Skinhead")!

album cover DIRTY SOUND SYSTEM Dirty French Psychedelics (Dirty) cd 16.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
From the same great tastemakers who put together the Dirty Space Disco collection that has become an all-time AQ favorite, comes this collection of sultry and sensual French psychedelia. These are the sounds and artists that have influenced folks like Sebastian Tellier, Air, Islaja, Blonde Redhead, Bjork, Broadcast, Komeda, etc.
And while we of course love the peppy sounds of classic French ye-ye pop, it's the more seductive, warped and tripped out sounds from France in the '70s that really gets us going! When we realized that one of our favorite songs of all time, "Il Pleut" by Brigitte Fontaine (complete with arrangements by Jean-Claude Vannier!) was included, we knew there was some mighty fine curatorial work going on here.
But it's not just that one track, not even close, this comp has turned us on to amazing sounds from new-to-us folks like Christophe, Nino Ferrer, Jeanne Marie Sens as well as long beloved AQ faves like Dashiell Hedayat, Ilous & Decuyper, and Francois de Roubaix. While many of their US and UK counterparts were injecting large amounts of blues and hard rock into their psychedelia, the French kept it sensual, steamy and tripped out, realizing an alternate yet completely enticing musical universe. Full on sexy psychedelic seduction! Weirdness too, like the awesome track whose grooves are backed with the sounds of revving race cars.
MPEG Stream: BRIGITTE FONTAINE "Il Pleut"
MPEG Stream: CHRISTOPHE "Sunny Road To Salina"
MPEG Stream: JEANNE-MARIE SENS "Tape Tape Tape"

EGGSTONE Ca Chauffe En Suede! Avec... (Tricatel) cd 16.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.

FONTAINE, BRIGITTE Brigitte Fontaine est... (Saravah) cd 17.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
One of Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth's very favorite artists, Brigitte Fontaine did a kind of acid-folk French pop thing (from the early 70s) that's just delicious. These are reissues.

album cover FONTAINE, BRIGITTE Est... Folle (Superior Viaduct) cd 15.98
Newly reissued by Superior Viaduct, Brigitte Fontaine's debut album from 1968 is a beautiful anomaly in the career of one of France's most groundbreaking artists. Produced by Jean-Claude Vannier, this is the closest Fontaine gets to a mainstream French pop record, even if it's hardly mainstream. Coy and alluring with a sultry mystery that gives the arrangements an artful sheen, Fontaine sounds like the best parts of Serge Gainsbourg, Francois Hardy and Nico combined. There are a couple of tracks that go into a goofy cabaret mode, but that was so indicative of the time, Fontaine could be forgiven for it. Especially considering the avant territory she would later explore with the Art Ensemble of Chicago and her longtime percussionist partner Areski on Comme a La Radio (also reissued on Superior Viaduct and reviewed elsewhere on this week's list). But for a fantastic French pop record with incredible production, this album comes highly recommended!!
MPEG Stream: "Il Pleut"
MPEG Stream: "Comme Rimbaud"
MPEG Stream: "Dommage Que Tu Sois Mort"

album cover FONTAINE, BRIGITTE Est... Folle (Superior Viaduct) lp 17.98
Newly reissued by Superior Viaduct, Brigitte Fontaine's debut album from 1968 is a beautiful anomaly in the career of one of France's most groundbreaking artists. Produced by Jean-Claude Vannier, this is the closest Fontaine gets to a mainstream French pop record, even if it's hardly mainstream. Coy and alluring with a sultry mystery that gives the arrangements an artful sheen, Fontaine sounds like the best parts of Serge Gainsbourg, Francois Hardy and Nico combined. There are a couple of tracks that go into a goofy cabaret mode, but that was so indicative of the time, Fontaine could be forgiven for it. Especially considering the avant territory she would later explore with the Art Ensemble of Chicago and her longtime percussionist partner Areski on Comme a La Radio (also reissued on Superior Viaduct and reviewed elsewhere on this week's list). But for a fantastic French pop record with incredible production, this album comes highly recommended!!
MPEG Stream: "Il Pleut"
MPEG Stream: "Comme Rimbaud"
MPEG Stream: "Dommage Que Tu Sois Mort"

FONTAINE, BRIGITTE Je Ne Connais Pas Cet Homme (Saravah) cd 17.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.

album cover FONTAINE, BRIGITTE Rue Saint Louis en L'ile (Virgin) cd 32.00
Attention les francophones!! If you've heard some of this new Brigitte Fontaine album, you may want to like it more than you actually find yourself doing so. If this is true, may we point you in the direction of Louise Forrestier? Please don't think we're simply generalizing when we say that stylistically there are many parallels between the music of Louise Forestier and Brigitte Fontaine. Much like that of chanteuse Fontaine, French Canadian actress/singer Forestier's music might initially strikes you as being fairly standard French Pop performed by seemingly straight-laced studio musicians, however listen closer / further to her Avec Enzymes album and you'll discover that's it's considerably more challenging and theatrical, at times drifting off into subtle eccentricities and some downright bizarre tangents. Quite campy but very cool.
If you're a die-hard Fontaine fan, you'll find her musical companionship with Areski here once again crafting futurist french pop tunes detailing her street and neighborhood. -- Very nice.

album cover FONTAINE, BRIGITTE s/t (Saravah) cd 16.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Brigitte Fontaine may get filed next to yeh-yeh girls like Francoise Hardy and Chantal Goya, but the eclectic avant-folk records she has been making with the help of percussionist Areski Belkacem since the seventies take the pop seed and mutate it far beyond the reach of any other French chanteuse. She cut a record with Art Ensemble of Chicago in 1971, and is making amazing records to this day, as evidenced by last year's excellent "Kekeland," featuring collaborations with the likes of Sonic Youth in addition to Areski. This is a reissue of her self-titled album from 1972, and it moves through the sounds of gorgeous pychedelic folk, string and organ-backed polyphonic liturgical-style chants advocating power to the people, medieval prog stylings, bizarre poetics, spoken word, barnyard avant-jazz, and the odd bout of screaming or anti-capitalist rallying. Her seductive voice grounds a kind of dada futurism that emerges alongside the deft navigation of styles, a hallmark of her work. Brigitte Fontaine's brand of cerebral pop experimentalism puts her in a strata attained by few artists. What reference points I can dig up-- Art Ensemble (of course), the best Os Mutantes records, Yoko Ono as a French situationist-- don't really suffice to explain Briggitte Fontaine's haunting oeuvre. Let me just say that listening to this album makes me giddy with joy (seriously!), and comes highly recommended, as does the reissue of 1971's "L'incendie."
RealAudio clip: "Brigitte"
RealAudio clip: "Marcelle"
RealAudio clip: "L'Eternal Retour"

album cover FONTAINE, BRIGITTE & ARESKI L'Incendie (BYG Records) lp 16.98
The blend of their voices work the best here than on other recordings they did together. Fans of Emmanuelle Parrenin, the recent Francoise Hardy cd we reviewed, La Question, or Nico's more pop-folk moments should definitely check this out!
MPEG Stream: "Ragilia"
MPEG Stream: "L'engourdie"

FONTAINE, BRIGITTE / ARESKI L'Incendie (Spalax) cd 16.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.

FONTAINE, BRIGITTE / ARESKI Vous Et Nous (Saravah) cd 16.98
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An awesome, quirky slice of French hippy avant-pop with lots of ethno-electronic action. Allan's favorite of Fontaine's ouvre.

album cover FONTAINE, BRIGITTE WITH ART ENSEMBLE OF CHICAGO Comme ˆ la Radio (Saravah) cd 16.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
I somehow missed out on the first round of this reissue a little bit ago, but luckily for all of us, it's popped up again! This is an amazing collaboration between two totally incredible musical explorers, french chanteuse Brigitte Fontaine (with percussionist partner Areski) and avant-jazz greats Art Ensemble of Chicago, recorded during the Art Ensemble's stay in Paris in 1969. Though coming from very different backgrounds, each artist's idiosyncratic approach, commitment to experimentation, disregard for genre boundaries, and keen sense for improvisation and working collaboratively yields an album that pushes each performer to new heights. The blend of Fontaine's vocals, Areski's understated percussion, and the Art Ensemble's horns is really seamless, evoking the mysterious, intriguing sounds of lounge jazz in a dada cafe, or, well, an intellectual french chanteuse melding avant-folk with free jazz, which is exactly what it is. Brigitte Fontaine is becoming more and more cemented as one of my absolute favorite artists ever whith each reissue I get my hands on. So great, so recommended!
RealAudio clip: "Comme ç La Radio"

album cover FONTAINE, BRIGITTE, ARESKI AVEC ART ENSEMBLE OF CHICAGO Comme A La Radio (Superior Viaduct) cd 15.98
Newly reissued by Superior Viaduct, this is an amazing collaboration between two totally incredible musical explorers, French chanteuse Brigitte Fontaine (with percussionist partner Areski) and avant-jazz greats Art Ensemble of Chicago, recorded during the Art Ensemble's stay in Paris in 1969. Though coming from very different backgrounds, each artist's idiosyncratic approach, commitment to experimentation, disregard for genre boundaries, and keen sense for improvisation and working collaboratively yields an album that pushes each performer to new heights. The blend of Fontaine's vocals, Areski's understated percussion, and the Art Ensemble's horns is really seamless, evoking the mysterious, intriguing sounds of lounge jazz in a dada cafe, or, well, an intellectual French chanteuse melding avant-folk with free jazz, which is exactly what it is. Brigitte Fontaine is becoming more and more cemented as one of our absolute favorite artists ever. So great, so recommended!
MPEG Stream: "Comme A La Radio"
MPEG Stream: "J'Ai 26 Ans"
MPEG Stream: "L'Ete L'Ete"
MPEG Stream: "Le Brouillard"

album cover FONTAINE, BRIGITTE, ARESKI AVEC ART ENSEMBLE OF CHICAGO Comme A La Radio (Superior Viaduct) lp 17.98
Newly reissued by Superior Viaduct, this is an amazing collaboration between two totally incredible musical explorers, French chanteuse Brigitte Fontaine (with percussionist partner Areski) and avant-jazz greats Art Ensemble of Chicago, recorded during the Art Ensemble's stay in Paris in 1969. Though coming from very different backgrounds, each artist's idiosyncratic approach, commitment to experimentation, disregard for genre boundaries, and keen sense for improvisation and working collaboratively yields an album that pushes each performer to new heights. The blend of Fontaine's vocals, Areski's understated percussion, and the Art Ensemble's horns is really seamless, evoking the mysterious, intriguing sounds of lounge jazz in a dada cafe, or, well, an intellectual French chanteuse melding avant-folk with free jazz, which is exactly what it is. Brigitte Fontaine is becoming more and more cemented as one of our absolute favorite artists ever. So great, so recommended!
MPEG Stream: "Comme A La Radio"
MPEG Stream: "J'Ai 26 Ans"
MPEG Stream: "L'Ete L'Ete"
MPEG Stream: "Le Brouillard"

album cover FORESTIER, LOUISE Avec Enzymes (Unidisc Music) cd 13.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Here's one of several Unidisc Music reissues that aren't necessarily new, but are new to us here at AQ, and we've found them to be quite intriguing and enjoyable listens.
Avec Enzymes was originally released back in 1970. Now, on the language side of things, unfortunately we're not multilingual to the point of being able to tell the difference between Quebecois-French and France-French (although we wish we were!), so please don't think we're simply generalizing when we say that stylistically there are many parallels between the francophone music of Louise Forestier and Brigitte Fontaine. Much like that of chanteuse Fontaine, French Canadian actress/singer Forestier's music might initially strikes you as being fairly standard French Pop performed by seemingly straight-laced studio musicians, however listen closer / further and you'll discover that's it's considerably more challenging and theatrical, at times drifting off into subtle eccentricities and some downright bizarre tangents. I mean, just check out the album's title! A little odd, doncha think? She didn't stick to any one genre either, dabbling in rock, folk, pop and even rock opera! So campy and cool!
MPEG Stream: "California"
MPEG Stream: "Tzagadou"

GAINSBOURG, CHARLOTTE Hey Joe (Because Music) 7" 13.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.

album cover GAINSBOURG, CHARLOTTE IRM (Because / Elektra) cd 14.98
The daughter of Serge Gainsbourg and Jane Birkin, recording an album written and produced by Beck. The sum of those parts makes for some pretty irresistible and seductive sounds. Of course it's not fair to identify Charlotte Gainsbourg just by her famous parents, as she has established herself as a multitalented force over the years, as a model, a singer and an actress. Her performances in films such as Michel Gondry's The Science Of Sleep, Todd Hayne's I'm Not There, and most recently the latest disturbing offering from Lars Von Trier, Antichrist, has definitely demonstrated the range and intensity that Gainsbourg is capable of bringing as an actress. We won't go too much into it, but if you haven't seen Antichrist, its one of the most intense and disturbing performances we've ever seen on the big screen. We mention all these acting roles because Gainsbourg's role in music in so many ways is as a vessel. Transporting someone else's vision and production and making it her own.
On her last album 5:55, she teamed up with Air who wrote and produced, the end result dreamy and blissed out sensuality. It somehow makes perfect sense that now Beck has taken the reins, as he no doubt been strongly influenced by Charlotte's lineage, as much of his music, stylistic breadth, and fashion choices over the years are undeniably heavily influenced by the legacy of Serge Gainsbourg.
While Beck's trademark sound can be heard quite prominently throughout the record, especially on the tracks on which his vocals dominate, it's the more languid and moody tracks that shine, where Gainsbourg really takes center stage and makes the record her own. There is something both dark and soothing about her aura and vocal delivery. With full and lush arrangements as a bed for her entrancing voice, Gainsbourg once again proves she is an enigmatic chanteuse who has carved out an identity that is all her own.
MPEG Stream: "IRM"
MPEG Stream: "Le Chat Du CafŽ Des Artistes"
MPEG Stream: "Heaven Can Wait"
MPEG Stream: "Voyage"

album cover GAINSBOURG, CHARLOTTE Stage Whisper (Elektra) cd 17.98
Charlotte Gainsbourg has repeatedly demonstrated her facility as a unique and striking artist on her own, and not just as the daughter of Serge Gainsbourg and Jane Birkin. Her work as an actress has intensified over the years, with her starring in the last two films by Lars Von Trier, including one of the most harrowing performances we've seen on the big screen in Antichrist. She collaborated with Air on her debut 5:55 and then with Beck on IRM. Both albums showcased her sensual and languid voice, over very well orchestrated music composed by folks well aware of her musical legacy.
Stage Whisper offers eight brand new songs, a handful of them find her teamed up with Beck again, and she's sounding as great as ever, with songs that make you just want to sway and get lost in their breezy sound. We're reminded of Taken By Trees, Beth Gibbons, and there are definitely moments that hints at her upbringing that echo Francoise Hardy and her mother.
The second half of the disc consists of 10 live tracks from her first ever tour, which took place in 2010. A few of us saw her concert in San Francisco on that tour, and after finding out that this was her first time ever playing live and hitting the road we were amazed by how tight and punchy her live sound was. Most of the live tracks come from her two proper albums, as well as her cover of Bob Dylan's "Just Like A Woman", and a standout duet with Charlie Fink of Noah & The Whale on the song "Got To Let Go".
Fans of her first two albums are going to want this for the new tracks, and for those who have been curious but haven't dived into her musical world yet, this would be an awesome introduction.
MPEG Stream: "White Telephone"
MPEG Stream: "Got To Let Go (Featuring Charlie Fink of Noah & The Whale)"
MPEG Stream: "IRM (Live)"

GAINSBOURG, SERGE 1 2 3 (Doxy) 2lp + cd 41.00

GAINSBOURG, SERGE Aux Armes et Caetera (Mercury) 2cd 34.00

album cover GAINSBOURG, SERGE Aux Armes Et Caetera (4 Men With Beards) lp 16.98
In a career of odd outings, this one is perhaps the oddest, but it works soooo well! This is Serge Gainsbourg's REGGAE DUB record from 1979. But this isn't just a bunch of French cats doing their own take on Jamaican reggae, this one is home-grown in Kingston using some of the finest session players: Sly and Robbie, Rita Marley, Ansell Collins, Judy Mowatt, Marcia Griffiths, and Leroy Wallace doing a full on Compass Point / Lee Perry-style dub and dread burner. There's a story that most of the musicians who signed up for this session first cast a suspicious eye on the white man they were to be working for, but once they figured out this was the man behind "Je T'aime Moi Non Plus", a global make-out hit, the ice was broken and the players were fully on board. And what prevents this from straying into full on camp territory is Gainsbourg's allowance of his tunes to be transformed by the musicians while his vocals stay in the laissez-faire mode of being sort of chanted rather than being sung. Of all the later day Gainsbourg releases out there, this one is really worth your time!

album cover GAINSBOURG, SERGE Bonnie and Clyde (4 Men With Beards) lp 17.98
We're so psyched that all these amazing Serge Gainsbourg records have been getting the reissue treatment lately, since for the last several years any time you tried to find Gainsbourg on vinyl, that section in the record store would always be empty, or somehow worse, filled with outlandishly expensive imports.
Originally released in 1968, Bonnie And Clyde was labeled as a collaboration between Gainsbourg and his sultry fling of that moment, the illustrious Brigitte Bardot. While she isn't on all of the record, the tracks she does appear on do soar with such sultry and seductive pop perfection. And the tracks where Gainsbourg goes at it alone manage to be equally as suave and swirly, tapping into his masterful ability to bring so much texture and depth in demonstrating the ultimate possibilities of pop music. You can hear so many more contemporary bands in these songs, the influence is irrefutable. Everyone from Air, Stereolab, Beck, Sebastian Tellier, Stereo Total, Magnetic Fields, Jens Lekman, Rufus Wainwright, April March and about a million more have followed in one way or another the blueprints that Gainsbourg created. Bonnie and Clyde perfectly displays Gainsbourg's flair for cabaret inspired lush and colorful pop. Yet another document of the man's musical genius!

GAINSBOURG, SERGE Comic Strip (Mercury) cd 15.98
This is the delightful pop themed volume of the fine retrospective compilation series of legendary French vocalist Monsieur Gainsbourg's extensive catalog. Recommended!

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