After Kevin Bacon (2012) and Chevy Chase (2016), Rouge Pompier returns this year with Neve Campbell, an album born after a trip to Norway. Through an unconventional formula, that of rocking as a duo, Jessy Fuchs (also founder of Slam Disques) and Alexandre Portelance balance the heavy with humour and commitment.
On Neve Campbell, the tone is light, absurd and sarcastic, but also incisive takes on serious and current subjects. Jessy Fuchs’ free verses are still simple, but his melodious voice, never a scream, makes them sound good. The excellent production of the album highlights the talent of the two Verdunites. The guitar serves up “nasty” and knife-edged riffs, with the warm tone of the tube amps cranked to the max.
Rouge Pompier has many faces, going far beyond the joke band that one might think it is at first glance; the album is filled with a wide variety of emotions. Our internal glaciers melt over the tragic “Des dents sur le trottoir”, a kind of updated “Black Hole Sun”. “Natation” seems to be an allegory about getting older and drowning psychologically, and it’s a devilishly catchy track. So is “Batman loves Bætman”. “Hyppocrampe”, a melancholy ode to parents who overly supervise their teenagers, takes on the aspect of a large, strangely soothing blanket.
In spite of a few more questionable moments (“Karoline”, “Ska ke c’tait”, or the clichés of “Un ours qui pleurait dans l’téléphone”), this album is a beautiful heavy talisman, wrought from the absurd, to be worn in these uncertain times.