Pin It

CD Review: Belle Boussole 



Belle Boussole (2010, Wanderlust Sound)

The long, cold winter is just around the corner, and if you can’t actually escape to tropical islands or wend through the European countryside in a sports car, Belle Boussole can provide a reasonable facsimile of such a trip. The New Paltz band is a musical partnership between husband and wife Bryan and Nicole McGurn.

Modern soul music is many different things to many different people, but its lines are cleanest and purest in the acid jazz of bands like Brand New Heavies and Jamiroquai. Bryan’s introduction to the genre happened during a six-month stint in Hong Kong, which is obviously a long way for the music to travel. But as a metaphor, it works. This eponymous debut is traveling music, from up-tempo songs like “Walk with Me” and “Firefly,” which would provide the perfect soundtrack to wheels effortlessly hugging the curve, to the sultry sophisticated sway of “Chocolate Cake” and “Free Tonight.”

Because of its sleek styling, acid jazz has always had an air of the future as it appeared in the past, a place where drinks are served to smiling couples on jetliners bound for points unknown. Belle Boussole takes the conceit one step further, with synthesized strings and beats, and the gentle digital chirps and tweets one might imagine coming out of robot butlers. The transition from one song to the next is as smooth as Nicole’s voice, perfectly suited for blue-eyed soul music and thankfully without the accursed, omnipresent Auto-Tune. Bryan’s production is equally powerful, eschewing overly contemporary gimmicks for something far more classic. www.belleboussole.com.

click to enlarge cd-belle-boussole.jpg

Speaking of...

  • Crispin Kott reviews Belle Boussole's self-titled album.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

  • The Way Home: Yungchen Lhamo

    Peter Aaron writes about the Tibetan singer Yungchen Lhamo.
    • Feb 1, 2016
  • CD Review: "The Poughkeepsie Jazz Project"

    If you want to catch some of the best jazz in the Hudson Valley, head over to the Derby bar and restaurant on Main Street in Poughkeepsie. Since 2013, the duo of pianist John Scanlon and bassist Ben Basile has held court there every Tuesday, jamming with an array of local talent each week and establishing Po-Town as a rising force in local bop.
    • Aug 1, 2015

Hudson Valley Events

submit event
Regal Bag Winter Family Fun @ Regal Bag

Regal Bag Winter Family Fun

Sat., Dec. 3, 12-4 p.m. — Please come join us @ the Regal Bag Studios building down on...
First Saturday Reception @ Arts Society of Kingston (ASK)

First Saturday Reception

First Saturday of every month, 5-8 p.m. — ASK's openings are elegant affairs with wine, hors d'oeuvres and art enthusiasts....

View all of today's events

Latest in Music

Related to Music

  • Opera in Phoenicia Park
  • Opera in Phoenicia Park

    With its open-air format, where attendees picnic in the parks and watch the stars emerge during performances, and its $5 youth tickets, the Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice is the perfect place to share with children a love of music and theater, in a variety of styles.
    • Jul 25, 2016
  • More »

More by Crispin Kott

Hudson Valley Tweets