posted on March 18, 2010 19:00
The story so far: Two French musicians toil away in semi-obscurity, resigned to life under the radar. Little do they suspect that someone is watching them. Now read on:
Some musicians are happy to be local heroes, cult artists avoiding the harsh media glare and 'Hello'-wedding of celebrity.
But no profile is low enough, no cult act obscure enough, no home-made CD-R indie enough to hide you from the CLUAS gaffer. He sees you when you're sleeping; he knows when you're awake.
And so your Paris correspondent received orders: find Natural Snow Buildings!
So, Natural Snow Buildings (right) are a duo: he's Mehdi and she's Solange. They come from Bourgogne, the eastern region of France we know in English as Burgundy - home of fine wine, delicious beef stew and a shade of red that never looks good on trousers.
By any definition, Natural Snow Buildings are a cult act. They've been making records since 1997, often home-made and with careful artwork. Each of them also puts out solo work - Mehdi as TwinSisterMoon and Solange as Isengrind. Their product is usually released in very limited quantities - 500 copies is a typical pressing run. And most of those copies get snapped up by eager devotees.
What do they sound like? Well, what we've heard so far is lo-fi alt-folk with a touch of experimental post-rock.
And is it good, this lo-fi alt-f. with the touch of exp. p-r? Yes, it is. We recommend their most recent album, 'Shadow Kingdom', and an earlier double-album called 'The Dance Of The Moon And The Sun'. The music is beguiling and thoughtful, the vocals warm and careworn.
You can hear some tracks on the Natural Snow Buildings MySpace page. From 'Shadow Kingdom', here's what they probably think of all this paparazzi-esque CLUAS celebrity spotlight - 'Go Away, Disappear':