Bruni is the French president’s wife. A former fashion model, she’s been singing since 2002. This is her new album. She covers Dylan. OK, I was curious and had a listen. Read on.
What you get on ‘Comme Si’ is French mainstream pop with a strong nod to the Chanson tradition. There are two kinds of people who can belt out a whopping good chanson: They’re either young and disgusted (Brel, Piaf) or old and cantankerous (the rest). Bruni is neither.
She is at her best when she isn’t trying too hard to sound breathy and her backing band stops taking itself so seriously. There are three songs on ‘Comme Si’ that I’d like to draw your attention to. ‘Salut Marin’ has an old school Chanson flavour, ‘Le Temps Perdu’ has a wonky cabaret charme and ‘Notre Grand Amour Est Mort’ takes a slight nod at the Serge Gainsbourg school of French 60’s Beat, even down to the title.
Then there’s a cover version of ‘You Belong To Me’, probably best interpreted by Bob Dylan to date. Bruni approaches the material softly in a Suzanne-Vega-jamming-in-the-coffee-house way, loosing the song’s fire in the process.
The rest is really not my cup of tea. It’s all a bit ‘Celine Dion lite’ to me.
Listen Here to Carla Bruni’s ‘Comme Si De Rien N’Etait’ and download the album from iTunes.
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