France - Full Moon 55 - 04/08/01
The first album from Eiffel has been released at the beginning of the year. Discreetly
noticeable with an EP two years ago, the band have just gotten an undeniable place in the very
selected circle of the real rock bands. Since the "consecrated" time of the alternative rock of
the eighties, with groups like Telephone, La Mano Negra, Ludwig Von 88, Octobre Rouge,
Marquis De Sade, the French stage had difficulties to be different from its Anglo-Saxon
neighbours, as far as rock is concerned, of course!
Indeed, Noir Dé sir are first in this stage, with all the talent they have proved, but now it
is time to think about the future (the last studio album of Noir Désir was released... five
years ago). After listening to Abricotine, we can just hope they will not limit themselves
to this album only. About the influences (I prefer the term of reference), Noir Désir is rightly
the band close to Eiffel, but essentially with the voice of Romain Humeau, the singer and the
composer, similar to Bernard Cantat's, the singer of Noir Désir (for that matter, this
resemblance is sometimes annoying, but we get used to it). But this will be the only connection
I will do, because the music of Eiffel is first of all relatively original. In any case, the
four members of the band have put all their effort into their album, (sometimes?) realised with
violence during more than one year, but they are perceptibly satisfied with the result. They have
made what they wished, without caring about the viewpoint of their close relations, as tells
Romain: "I have not felt the need to wait for the viewpoint of my close relations, of my friends,
of the label, or of the media. The idea was to obtain what we wanted. And from that point of
view, the album as a whole is well enough, not only song by song".
This speech could appear as presumptuous, but it has the worth to show that the band have not
recorded this album to win the French Grammy Award, but first of all to please themselves. This
sincerity is present throughout the album. It is sometimes fiery, not only by the music, but
above all by the lyrics. Sex, sometimes in a coarse way, love and the death are often the themes
of the songs. But these components are often connected, as Romain tells. We can also find the
pleasure at the level of recording, Eiffel have produced this album themselves.
Finally, another sign of quality with the realisation of the sleeve, entrusted to the very
famous English designer Vaughan Oliver. If you do not recognise this name, just remember the
eighties period of 4AD (the only really interesting, but this is my opinion) and the magnificent
sleeves of Modern English, Cocteau Twins, This Mortal Coil, or Pixies.
Copyright © 2001 Patrick Dubail