Canadian and Quebecois singer Patrice Michaud has released his fourth album entitled Grand voyage désorganisé (An extensive and disorganized journey). The themes are a personal journey, breakups, universe and life.
The music is Alternative. There’s a 70s vibe to the album, especially with the psychedelic beats- it has an experimental sound that is bold and intricate. The first example of that is the tune 1977. There’s an Elton John vibe, especially a sound similar to Benny and The Jets. Also, the music parallels the works of The Tragically Hip and Louis-Jean Cormier with some contemporary tones mixed with the 70s sounds. The piece Vous êtes ici (You are here) reminds me of the Beatles in terms of the guitar in the background. Golden Record has a beat that reminds me of David Bowie’s music from the late 70s/early 80s, including As the World Falls Down. Un Coeur de baleine Bleue (A heart as big as a whale) parallels an R&B sound from the 70s (i.e. Stevie Wonder). Je t’aime quand Je mens (I love when I lie) has a jazzy sound using the cello and the saxophone. La grande évasion has a catchy and upbeat sound.
Some songs have a soothing tone that’s calming and relaxing, such as the piece À Qui L’aura (To the one who’ll have it). It has a dream-like vibe in its rhythm. Origami has a beautiful piano rhythm that is smooth and also relaxing- remarkable composition. Ok, Maman (ok mother) has a heavy tone because it talks about a sad subject: the neglect of seniors caused by seniors. Un point bleu pâle (A light blue point) has music that parallels Classical Japanese music. The songs are rich in sounds and rhythms with an incredible range in musical styles.
Patrice Michaud’s voice is husky yet soft, and he sounds flowy in his song. He has a bold style in performing each piece. There’s a fantastic trio and spoken-word piece entitled Un point bleu pâle (a light blue point) featuring Rosalie Ayotte and Shayan Heidari.
The lyrics are poetic, as well as timeless. There are intricate metaphors/symbols throughout the album. 1977 has an old-school style of writing that gives a nostalgic touch. La guerre de toi n’aura pas lieu (The war within you won’t take place) and Un Coeur de baleine Bleue (A heart as big as a whale) are two prominent examples. Coeur de baleine Bleue is about a profound personal generosity- the whale is about something grand.
La grande évasion represents getting away from everything. Un point bleu pâle (a light blue point) is full of symbols and metaphors described in detailed poetry. The song has many examples, such as life is like a movie and a flight of birds (symbol of travel and exploring the world).
Also, some songs talk about a journey through life component. That also applies to La grande évasion and Un point bleu pâle. Origami is a lovely symbol of the changes one faces throughout life. Vous êtes ici (you are here) is an inspirational piece about living in the moment and living life to the fullest.
Some pieces have an important message behind them. Ok, Maman (ok, mother) is a heartbreaking song and first example. According to iTunes, Patrice Michaud describes a mother growing old and isolated- an essential lesson in caring for elders.
Each song is complex with a read between the lines way of writing that is rich in language.