French Letter Music Blog


French Letter


Jul 21

Written by:
Tuesday, July 21, 2009  RssIcon

Here’s a lovely bit of blissed-out summer folk-pop that’s getting plenty of airplay on French radio – which is quite appropriate, for reasons we shall explain.

ChicrosThe band (right) are called Chicros, formerly Los Chicros, which we believe is slang for “the skinflints”. We understand that they named themselves thus because they trawl for cheap vintage instruments picked up in markets and second hand stores.

Anyway, this Parisian foursome make an idiosyncratic sound that covers most points of the retro alt-pop spectrum – we hear flashes of Belle & Sebastian, Jonathan Richman and The Boo Radleys in there.

Chicros have just released their second album, ‘Radiotransmission’. It’s a concept album about the wireless – a quarter of the track titles feature the word ‘radio’. For the most part, it’s quite good.

The standout track is that bit of blissed-out summer folk-pop we promised in the first paragraph. It’s called ‘What’s New Today On TV?’ and has a rather delicate melody that bobs like a kite over a chiming guitar line. And the song’s sunny disposition is subverted by the blatantly saccharine chorus: “What a wonderful world we live in today”. The best pop songs often sugar-coat a bitter pill.

You can check out Chicros’ MySpace page for this and other tracks. We had hoped to bring you sound and vision: however, the video for ‘What’s New Today On TV?’ consists of clips from what seems like the less graphic parts of ‘70s German adult films. The CLUAS Legal Department are quite strict on this sort of stuff, so you’ll have to make do with a discreet link and one of those ‘not responsible for external content’ disclaimers. And don’t watch it at work, okay?

Fortunately the video for 'New Orleans' is more suited to CLUAS viewing, featuring nothing more than young children violently attacking voodoo dolls of the band:

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Aidan Curran, based in Paris, has been writing for CLUAS since 2004. More info about Aidan...

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