Plan 'B' for Turzi

Details are emerging of French Krautrock king Turzi’s follow-up to debut ‘A’, and it looks like it’s going to be called – wait for it – ‘B’. According to his label, Record Makers, it’s slated for release either in early July or September (the French record industry goes to sleep in August). On the label’s website, Turzi gives some indication as to the direction he’s taken, which includes the use of exotic instruments like the bouzouki, zither and cimbalom. He says ‘B’: “is more acoustic, and therefore warmer and more intimate, but also heavier and less restrained than ‘A’.” (Image credit: David Sauvage)

Vampire Weekend

Parisian electronic duo Chateau Flight (Gilbert Cohen and Nicolas Chaix aka I:Cube) will be performing their acclaimed soundtrack to an episode from Louis Feuillade’s 1915 film serial Les Vampires at the Noise of Art event on Sunday 19 April at London’s Southbank Centre. The pair told Rockfort: “Playing Les Vampires is something we really love. We usually play in clubs, where people dance, so doing this allows us to express a side of our production we rarely do. Playing music for a concentrated and seated audience is just great! And for this show, it’s going to sound really different from past times, because we have improved our live set up a lot and we can now improvise in a much more easy way.”

Girls and Film

Rockfort, in collaboration with the French movie channel Cinémoi, is hosting a special live event at London’s French Institute in South Kensington on Tuesday 9 June. Confirmed acts are Emily Loizeau, Mansfield TYA and cult chanteuse Anne Pigalle, plus there will be a screening of interviews done by Rockfort for the Cinémoi. There are lots of details still to come on the site, including interviews with the artists and information on purchasing tickets.

US Serge for 'Melody'

On 24 March, Seattle's Light in the Attic release what is, unbelievably, the first ever US reissue  of Serge Gainsbourg's landmark 1971 album 'Histoire de Melody Nelson' on CD and LP, remastered from the original tapes; U.S. listeners are rewarded for their patience with a 40-page deluxe booklet including extensive notes from music journalist Andy Beta and Finders Keepers label boss Andy Votel giving the full untold story, plus bi-lingual lyrics and a 1971 Q&A interview with Serge. 

Chanson and On

The theme of this year’s Fête de la Musique will be ‘50 years of French chanson’, coinciding with the French ministry for culture’s half-century celebrations. Quite what this will mean in terms of concerts isn’t clear yet, but the official 2009 website will be visible from April. The Fête de la Musique takes place every 21 June all over France and in many other places besides including London, where it goes by the name of Exhibition Road Music Day. More details as we have them.

Planet Ahead

Young disco-pop duo Jupiter (who go individually by the enigmatic names of Q and A) are playing live and performing a DJ set at the Old Blue Last on 3 April. They’ve already remixed Metronomy and, judging by the tracks they’ve made available so far, they’re coming on like the French cousins of Sally Shapiro – no bad thing!

Konki Duet to Eno

As they work on their third album, The Konki Duet have been posting all sorts of new tracks and demos on their myspace page. One of the most recent is a lovely cover of Brian Eno’s ‘By This River’, originally from the album ‘Before and After Science’ and used memorably in Nanni Moretti’s 'The Son’s Room' (La Stanza del Figlio).

Bye Bye Bashung

Alain Bashung, who enjoyed both commercial success and critical recognition in France like no other artist since Gainsbourg, died of cancer on Saturday 14 March at the age of 61. In a career that began in the late 70s, he collaborated with Gainsbourg and won a record 11 Victoires de la Musique awards (the French equivalent of the Brits). 2002's 'L''Imprudence' is undoubtedly his best, and most adventurous, album.

French Cargo

East London’s Cargo venue is hosting a French music showcase, the live-boutique.com festival, over two nights on 24 and 25 March. The first night focuses on the French world scene, with gypsy fusionist Thierry 'Titi' Robin the big draw plus El Hadj N’Diaye and Soha, while the following show leans towards pop and electro with Yodelice, DuOud and The Fugitive Kind (aka Nicolas Leroux of Overhead).


French Touch survivors Bosco, recently more active through their Prototypes side-project, are currently working on a new album and Rockfort has heard some of the tracks. We reckon ‘Push It to the Limit’, a great disco-paced number featuring cute old-skool rapping and warm, squelchy electro bass, sounds like a future single. You can catch up on some of their previous work here.