It’s almost a month ago that I discovered the French band Mermonte (read here). Now I have their debut album ‘Mermonte’ (released by Father Figure Records) and can tell you it is amazing. They delight us with wonderfully fine structured Pop songs - very superficial spoken. The band leader is Ghislain Fracapane who surrounds himself 9 other musicians to create his sound. The album sounds big at times but then again it’s very small, very intimate. As I said in my last post, they don’t work with too many words - they rather use their voices as an addition to the melody or that is how I feel about it. Half of the songs where they sing are in French anyway, so I can’t understand them.
"We’re On The Same Way" kind of reminds me of a late summer holiday with friends or rather the memory of it - I can almost feel the warm winds, somewhere at a sea and the sun on your skin. Highs and lows. It’s this picture returning to my mind every time I hear this song. In "Davis Le Merle" I like the glockenspiel - kind of isolated at the beginning but still "walking" along as the melodies goes on. It ends up being "one of many" but doing it’s own…until it stands out again. For me it’s sort of trying to find it’s way, like a humans do. It sounds weird, doesn’t it? I can’t help but having this imaginary in my head.
"Grain" remind me of two bands melted together you probably have never heard of unless you are a very attentive reader of my blog: Stagecoach and Screaming Maldini*. So, it’s powerpop for bmx kids with a touch of sound explosions. Actually that fits for a few songs on the album. I think sometimes I hear a bit of Jazz influences but as I am not fond of Jazz, it’s probably what I imagine a touch of Jazz would add to Pop. Are you confused by now? Does it still make sense? It does for me but it I fear it gets confusing. As there are almost no songs with actual lyrics to tell you what the song is about, you’re left on your own to discover the fine structures and layers every song has to offer. For me this ends up in a weird mix of pictures, feelings and memories of things that never happened and that is difficult to explain to others.
You can hear violin, cello, guitars, drums and a lot of Glockenspiel but not too much of it. I mean there is that point when it’s just too much but Mermonte made it just right. It gives to songs an extra portion of playfulness which I enjoy especially on the sunny Spring days.
Here is a video for “Oups”, directed by Jollan Aurelio-it’s very nice made and sets the song into a complete different context from where my imagination put it but the basic theme is actually the same. It’s about bad luck. The melody is very impelling and kind of unsettled:
Thanks for reading,
*Side note: Mermonte and Screaming Maldini are signed to the same French label called HipHipHip. The album will also be released in Japan (Friend of Mine Records).