I’m not entirely convinced by Chic Gamine. Not a great start to a post is it? It’s true though, there’s something about them that has me hooked, but then, I also can’t help but have moments of objectivity in which I listen and can’t see how I did like them so much. And then I hear them once more, and I change my mind once again. It’s a cycle and type of indecision that’s actually a startling rarity for myself. As you might notice, our posting has diminished somewhat recently, and even before then it has always been focused on showcasing acts we believe in. When that’s the case, there’s little real room for indecision, and as such, often acts that breed ‘indecision’, are overlooked.
There’s something about Chic Gamine though. In part it stems from HMCMB’s mutual appreciation for fiery female leads: Meg Myers, Kyla La Grange and the of course how could we forget The Gossip’s ultimate diva Beth Ditto. Sitting around forlornly discussing love lost or gained, insecurities bested or succumbed to, but often there’s a little attitude gets you a whole lot further.
Sure Chic Gamine don’t really have an attitude, or at least, that’s not their artistic direction, but they certainly aren’t wallflowers. There’s something fun and uplifting about their pop group esque set up, 4 talented women sharing the vocals and their friendly male drummer who, it’s worth noting, has been known to a rock a fierce cowboy moustache. Facial hair envy aside, you did read correctly. 4 vocalists and a drummer. In fact it’s that raw set up that makes it so engaging, between the clever percussive claps and actual drums the bare bones beat allows the vocal harmonies to shine through in a motown soul meets pop music kind of way.
It also helps these guys sound like they’re having a ton of fun. Days and Days shows this perfectly, all melisma, clapping and massive groups chorus like some sort of crazy acoustic R&B set up. But with less woman beating wanksters – here’s looking at you Chris – and far more cross genre soul and pop influences. I apologise that i’m failing miserably to describe their fairly idiosyncratic sound. You might just have to listen for yourself.
Below is their freely downloadable track Closer straight from the SXSW free torrent (yes, torrents can sometimes be legal), with the video for which also available above. Head to their Facebook page to hear more.
Chic Gamine – Closer [right-click to download]