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Friday, 18 October 2013

Friday's French music break - HollySiz, "Come back to me"

Friday's French music break this week follows a trend that's quite common in France of actresses attempting to sing (who can forget those that shouldn't have but continue to do so such as Claire Keim or Mélanie Laurent) when perhaps their talents would be best served elsewhere or at least doing what they supposedly do best.

It's "Come back to me" from HollySiz.

(screenshot from official video)

That's the name Cécile Cassel (already a stage name as she was born Cécile Crochon) has plumped for, to launch her music career.

Cassel has a pretty good acting pedigree. She's the daughter of the late Jean-Pierre Cassel and half sister to Vincent, and has herself appeared in films (20 of them so far) television and theatre.

Just to add to, what cynics might say is, the rather nepotistic element that seems to epitomise the French entertainment industry, Cassel is also the partner of Raphaël Hamburger, the son of France Gall and the late Michel Berger.

Cassel has reinvented herself for the music industry to produce the album "My Name Is" from which "Come back to me" is the first track to be released as a single.

First up is the name HollySiz (a combination of "Holly", the name of the heroine played by SissySpacek in the 1973 US film "Badlands" and Cassel's nickname "Siz"). And then she has dyed her hair platinum blonde because, "in my head when I was younger, female singers had hair that colour" (artists sometimes say the silliest things while doing the promotional rounds, don't they?)

Cécile Cassel or HollySiz (screenshot from "On n'est pas couché", France 2 television October 5, 2013)

The song is in English - as in the entire album - a language Cassel felt was more appropriate rhythmically to the kind of music she wanted to produce and one which she says "allowed her to say things that she would never have been able to express in French."

The 31-year-old wrote 70 per cent of the album tracks herself and collaborated with the likes of Yodelice (Maxim Nucci), the excellent female duo Brigitte (check them out here) and M on some of the songs.

"Dark and sensual" is how Aymeric Caron described "My name is" on "On n'est pas couché"; a description which might be pushing the limits of interpreting pop music a bit.

And although "Come back to me" is a catchy enough song, it's also a bit of a throwback to the 80s - a sound that has been revisited umpteen times and is hardly original.

If you like an arm-flailing, hair shaking and poorly choreographed disco dance floor video, then the official clip is for you. Plus there's a bit of tap dance thrown in - something of a tribute to one of the talents of her father.

"Come back to me" is not extraordinary. But of it's kind, it's...well, definitely easy enough to listen to and inoffensive enough.

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