Country : Canada (Quebec) Label : Indépendant Genres and styles : Americana / Bluegrass / Country / Folk Year : 2020

Yodel Bleu

· by Claude André

Right off the bat, just the name of the band composed of Catherine-Audrey Lachapelle ( Virginie Francœur on District 31) and Léandre Joly-Pelletier is a happy omen, evoking dewy evenings of August under the skies of Gaspésie…

It’s also an image that reflects the festive and lively licks of the banjo, violin, guitars and bluegrass mandolin.

That’s the style the duo chose, and in French for that matter, for this second EP after a foray into the language of Bill Monroe, recognized as the father of this musical genre that appeared in the Appalachian mountains in the 1940s with the Bluegrass Boys.

It’s not clear if the pair are a couple in life, but the theme of the opus refers to the everyday life of lovers who worry one day about their monthly payments (“On va-tu être ben!”), another, their romantic fault lines (“Hymne à l’amour qui s’en va”, allô Piaf), and the following week, promise fidelity to each other until their last breath – as in the very touching “L’éclaireur”, a possible radio hit that would certainly not displease the Boulay sisters.

Contrary to what the title of the work suggests, yodelling is not very present, except on the title track, whose refrain is reminiscent of Angèle Arsenault’s “De temps en temps, moi, j’ai les bleus” – but the musical spirit is there with its harmonic progressions,duet vocals, and string arrangements, including those of the excellent Kieran Poile on violin and MarcOlivier Tremblay Drapeau on double bass.

Simple but not simplistic writing, which is uncommon, a solid and catchy ensemble, and avian titles like “Tu es t’es envolé” or “Si j’avais des ailes ”(salut, Charlebois) hint that this may be the perfect soundtrack to attack the long 132. If only I had a car…

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