French Music review: summer memories

Various artists Souvenirs d’été, Volumes 1 and 2

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The first CD volume of streaming service Deezer’s ‘Memories of summer’ covers compilation came out a couple of years back (left, price €9.99 in Fnac).

Among the artists included were Feu! Chatterton having fun with Patrick Coutin’s 1981 hit J’aime regarder les filles and Thérapie Taxi’s cool take on Christophe’s 1965 hit Aline.

The compilation offered a great combination of modern pop artists giving their take on big hits as well as (often kitsch) chanson française classics – and thereby opening up both elements to a potential new audience.

Now the second volume has been released, and it provides an equally eclectic and enjoyable bunch of songs by 13 contemporary French artists.

Among the stand-outs is Julien Granel’s Partir un jour, originally a hi-tempo 1997 hit by 2Be3 but brought down a notch into moody, cool ambience by Granel.

At least one song is an improvement on the original offering: Marie Flore provides a sophisticated reworking of Au Soleil – a sunny smash for young singer Jenifer in 2007 – lending some emotional heft lacking in the too-jolly original about a breakup.