Louane: Chambre 12

louane1First Magnitude

Listening Post 19. Louane Emera knows success and sorrow. She turned all four judges’ chairs at her audition for the French version of The Voice, she won a César Award (the French Oscar) for her first film and saw her debut album go to number 1. She has also lost both parents. And later this month she turns 19. Her album, Chambre 12 (Room 12)—pop songs filled with teen vitality mixed with ballads of experience, nostalgia and hard choices—showcases her captivating voice and humble mien. Especially enchanting is Louane’s rendition of La Mère à Titi (Titi’s Mother, video 1), written by Renaud, a Dylanesque figure noted for his influence on other French artists and his reedy voice; the song describes the warmth of a friend’s home, its charming bric-a-brac, furnishings, figurines and pictures, and the maternal personage who presides over it all. The lyrics of Jeune (Young)—“I’d love to follow the sun, get vertigo, stand close to the cliff’s edge”—sound rebellious, but Louane’s voice and bounce project innocence (video 2). Other album highlights include the poignant Maman (Mom); the title track, in which she agonizes over lost love; and Je vole (I’m Flying, video 3), a Michel Sardou ballad she sang in her award-winning film role. Stay tuned: This artist will be turning heads and chairs for a long, long time. (Fontana/Mercury Music Group/Universal France)





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