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CocoRosie - "Noah’s Ark"

Sunday 25 September 2005

A few months ago, I was entrusted with writing a review for Cocorosie’s first release, entitled La Maison de mon Rêve. Despite its French title, the album is in fact written by the two Casady sisters, the American born Sierra and Bianca. The only thing French about La Maison de mon Rêve is that it was composed entirely in Paris where the two sisters live.

It certainly seems like Paris is an inspiring city... or at least one that allows for productivity as this second album follows La Maison de mon Rêve by a little less than a year. Noah’s Ark was released with a little help from outside musicians including Devendra Banhart, Spleen or Greg Rogove but this does not really explain how an album could be so rapidly released. Certainly, part of the answer is that most of the tracks on Noah’s Ark have been written for a while. Indeed, the live performances of Cocorosie during the last year usually included a fair number of the tracks that can be heard here.

Although it is great to be able to recognize some of these tracks, there may be one single problem. Since a few of the tracks date back to the La Maison de mon Rêve, it is often difficult to discern much of an evolution – this is broadly generalizing and tracks like “The Sea is Calm” or “Noah’s Ark” are certainly new to the ear. However, the niche in which Cocorosie have made their sound is totally new. The sisters are musical geniuses and have, in two albums created a totally new sound – something which probably hasn’t happened to this extent since Björk.

Noah’s Ark adds twelve little pearls to already dazzling tracks like “Jesus Loves Me” or “Terrible Angels”. The voices of Sierra and Bianca are as beautiful as ever.. almost sexual, but definitely sexy. The opera lessons obviously were a help to them as the girls can alternately sound like American country singers, 1930’s cabaret singers or blues singers... Had they avoided using the French singers in “Bisounours”, one could only then claim that the album was close to perfect. But those voices are absolutely awful.

With Sigur Rös’ return en force announcing the return to dreamy music, Cocorosie come as confirmation. Ambiance and atmospheric music is back before Christmas!

Polo

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