Canadian singer La Zarra has released her first album entitled Traîtrise (Treachery). The themes are love and heartbreak.
The music is French Pop, mixed with some R&B. There’s a mix of old-school and modern music and a combination of French music and Middle Eastern rhythms. The first song Fille De Joie (A girl of joy), has an operatic sound that is bold. There are parallels to Edith Piaf, Charles Aznavour, Sylvie Vartan and Zaz. LVQM has a beautiful ballad sound with the piano, the guitar, and percussion. The piece Fleur Oubliée (The forgotten flower) has a style that reminds me of Speechless, the song from Aladdin (2019) performed by Naomi Scott. The rhythm gradually increases in intensity to represent the growing strength of the protagonist after the period of heartbreak. Simple Ami (A simple friend) has an incredible French R&B that parallels the 90s. That also applies to the tune Tu T’en Iras (You’ll go). Traîtrise (Treachery) – a beat similar to Sylvie Vartan’s songs, especially in the 70s. Je Coule (I’m sinking) parallels Edith Piaf’s classic song called La foule (the crowd), with a slower rhythm – there’s also a 90s R&B vibe. Each piece tells a profound story through dynamic arrangements reflecting the mood and vibe. The songs are impressive in tone and composition.
La Zarra’s voice is soulful and intricate, with an impressive vocal range. She reminds me of French singers like Zaz, Sylvie Vartan and also American Pop star Lady Gaga in the vocal style. La Zarra sings with passion and feeling- she captures the essence of each song.
The lyrics are passionate, expressive and personal. There’s beautiful poetry throughout the album. What’s interesting is how a couple of La Zarra’s songs have titles turned into abbreviations LVQM and TFTF. She makes you think. LVQM is La vie qu’on mène (the life we live) and TFTF is tout feu tout flamme (All that is fire burns). Traîtrise (treachery or betrayal) expresses raw emotions with depth and genuine vulnerability. It also applies to the song Pas le Coeur à la fête ( Don’t have the heart to party). A personal piece that references Montreal is Amour du Quartier (the love of the community) through a story about heartbreak and sorrow. It’s a heavy but bold song, rich in language and symbolism. Ne m’en veux pas (Don’t resent me) is an empowering song about finally moving on from the pain and heartache. The train mentioned in the song represents the journey to the next opportunity. Fleur Oubliée (The forgotten flower) describes how happiness comes from within, not a partner (in this example, it’s a man). It starts with heartbreak, then takes a turn to empowerment and strength. Je Coule (I’m sinking) reminds me of an Edith Piaf song called La foule, but it’s sad and heavy. It expresses the struggle and challenges one faces in a time of grief. Vie D’artiste (an artist) is a song about the struggles many artists face in making a name for themselves. The emotions are raw and profound. Comme Je l’aime (the way I love him) covers the challenges/struggles of relationships and unrequited love. It’s deep and vulnerable in how the song expresses a one-sided love.
However, there is an upbeat song entitled C’est Une Chanson (It’s a song). It is an inspirational piece about uniting people with something they have in common.
The songs are well-written with intricacy and thought. They’re also dynamic in subject matter and emotion.
The album Traîtrise is available.