Sublime eccentricity. Motorcycle romanticism. Nice ways of describing Montreal-based (but born in Toulouse) Olivier Alary, mastermind behind Ensemble. Alary worked with Björk, Lou Barlow and Cat Power. On the upcoming single, Dominique A(né) is guestvocalist. Is it postrock? Is it orchestral chanson? It’s modern, that’s for sure. Excerpts is the 3rd album Alary made under the Ensemble-moniker, but the first featuring French songs. Darcy Conroy (pictured) is providing the female vocals. Alary sings a couple of French songs, Conroy one, the beautiful-sad Les saisons viennent. A song to pamper your winter depression with. On the first single of the album, Darcy sang an odd but good cover of UB40’s Food for Thought. That song (from the days UB40 was actually GOOD) slags off Margaret Thatcher for cutting famine relief-funds for Africa. But in this saxy arrangement, it gets more mythical. Phantasmagorial. Where did I put my magical lantern?

Ensemble – Les saisons viennent
Ensemble – Food for thought (UB40 cover)