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I wasn’t sure about this at first, but something drove me back to it, and now I can’t stop listening – headphones help as this is a great piece of musical engineering! I say that because it is so well structured and stereo separation is well used to make the interweaving of music with the sounds of everyday life in Paris all the more vivid and beguiling.

Cécile Broché is actually from Belgium and studied classical and contemporary music, improvisation and jazz, graduating from Liege and Brussels conservatoires with a 1st prize in violin and chamber music. Amongst those she studied with is DIDIER LOCKWOOD (ex-MAGMA) who sadly died in 2018 aged just 62, and who himself studied with STEPHANE GRAPPELLI and was influenced by JEAN-LUC PONTY. Albums under Cécile’s name to date are “Soundscapes”, “Kartinka” and “Violin@New York” (the latter can be listened to on SOUND CLOUD), and she played on albums by various jazz, alternative and rock groups.

Anyway, I don’t know how to start to describe this. First of all, I thought of Rock in Opposition, HENRY COW etcetera, the same sort of loose approach, not free jazz, not quite rock, part chamber music, images in sound, protest? – not in this case. It might be best described as a dream-like walk through Paris, with numerous ‘bonjours’ and murmured conversations, sounds of the street, and Cécile’s adventurous electric violin - definitely a rock and free jazz element there - also with some well-chosen organ and synthesiser sounds and drumming and percussion, not too flashy, but just right for the musical story that unfolds. Melodies come and go and it all starts with a sunrise and a sunset; there’s even an ‘alternative’ 12-bar almost blues in there.

This album is, for me, a keeper, and I thoroughly recommend you give it a listen or two or three. It is released on Martin Archer’s DISCUS label (link on this site) through BANDCAMP.

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