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Celluloide – Words once said

Celluloide - Words once said

CD, BOREDOMproduct, 2003

“Words once said” is the second full-length release by French Synthpop band Celluloide, after their debut album “Na├»ve Heart” and the ‘virtual EP’ “Naphtaline”. With this release, Celluloide definitely prove that good Synthpop music in not an exclusive of Anglo-Saxon, Germanic and Scandinavian countries.
Oddly enough, only one song is sung in French, the brilliant opening track ‘Synchronise’. Quel dommage…
With a very retro touch to it, Celluloide’s synthetic music is extremely interesting and original in terms of construction: structures built of robotic beats combine with underlying simple ‘sliding’ melodic touches and create a unique style of ‘happy robot’ sound.
Lead singer Darklite’s vocals are, in some songs, more important than the music itself. Her cold, monochordic voice plays a pivotal role in being responsible for giving most of the songs in “Words Once Said” a ‘human dimension’ an emotion. In some songs, the sadness in her voice complements and provides an interesting contrast to the ‘happy robot’ music.
Even if they do show signs of the ‘English as second language’ syndrome, the lyrics are quite acceptable. From the lyrics to the already mentioned “Synchronise”, I get the impression that Celluloide would be even better lyrically if they would produce their songs in their native French.
Interestingly, I find it possible to compare Celluloide to Jacques Brel or Brassens. Naive as it may sound, there might be a new generation of chanson taking form, Celluloide being part of it.


— Miguel de Sousa

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