Etienne Daho

October 9, 2014By James OvertonMusic

Arty French Crooner
Hits the Road

Paris Update Etienne Daho Diskonoir Pochette 560

Etienne Daho deep in thought.

Arty French crooner Etienne Daho has launched a new tour that will take him all over France and into neighboring countries including Switzerland, Belgium and Britain over the next few months.

Since the 1980s, Daho has maintained a big fan base in spite of his unassuming image. Followers attending the concerts know all the words of the singer’s poppy yet intelligent vocals, which contrast with a driving electronic or rock background. The distinctive songs have worked particularly well on the small screen, with colorful video effects providing the backdrop to the well-crafted poetic tunes (look them up on YouTube.)

Daho has collaborated with David Bowie, Jane Birkin, Françoise Hardy, Saint-Etienne, Jacques Dutronc, Marianne Faithfull and many more. Although he regularly changes his style and innovates, the ’80s sound lingers: think OMD, Spandau Ballet or The Smiths.

His last album, Les Chansons de l’Innocence Retrouvée, produced in London by Etienne and Jean-Louis Piérrot (Alain Bashing, Christophe Miossec) with Richard Woolcroft (Last Shadow Puppets) was darker and more bass-rhythmic than his previous work.

Unfortunately, the sound quality was poor at the venue I attended (L’Onde in Vélizy), which detracted from the louder numbers. Daho came into his own, however, with melodic pop numbers like “Le Premier Jour (du Reste de ta Vie)” and “En Surface.” The set ended with a charming rendition of “Week-End à Rome,” accompanied only by the voices of the audience.

The 40 dates of the “Diskönoir Tour” can be found here.

In Paris, Daho will appear at the Olympia November 3-6, but the venue is reported to be nearly fully booked.

James Overton

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