Lara Fabian Releases "Le Secret" - Review of An Unexpected Musical Trip
Lara Fabian's new album Le Secret is a musical tour de force in ways that one could not have possibly anticipated from this artist just by listening to her previous works. In a period where she strongly needed to find a way to reconquer the francophone market, after the cold reception of her previous album of covers Toutes Les Femmes En Moi, in 2009, Le Secret appears as an absolute miracle to all of those who spent the last eight years patiently waiting to listen to a new album of French originals from Fabian. This is an album that will permanently redefine this artist before her audience.
With notable contributions from Janey Clewer, Giora Linenberg and Flavien Compagnon in the composition of the songs, as well as from musicians such as Bruce Gaitsch and Manu Pitois, all the lyrics are, nonetheless, penned by Lara Fabian herself. She provides the words to 17 different tracks, split between two CDs and interspersed with musical interludes that help create a fluid musical journey from the beginning to the end.
The album opens and closes with the same dry sound of a heartbeat, but with different speeds. The opening is fast and displays an urgency to tell the story that unfolds throughout the album; the ending is slow and gently fades out, as the secret is no longer one and the music can finally rest (but should not, because the album is worth multiple listens).
According to Lara Fabian, le secret, the secret, is that of finding true happiness within and not in anything external to the self. However, before reaching that state of freedom and detachment from the temptations of the outside world, one might have to face several challenges and each one of them, each of those subsecrets, has its own song devoted to it. The somber title song, "Le Secret", opens the album talking about incestuous rape and, from then on, there is everything, including betrayal, depression, loneliness, finding and losing love, homosexuality and addictions, even to technology.
Granted, if you don't understand French, you will hardly understand anything about this album, except for the grand last song, "I Am A-WA", which is sung in English. If you do understand French, you will still hardly understand everything about this album without resorting to the lyrics booklet, because Lara Fabian's diction in her medium and high range, for the most part, is subpar. However, consider her impressive voice just like another instrument and you are in for a treat all the way.
The instrumentation is truly grandiose and original, with epic orchestras combined with modern electronic sounds and even hints of beatbox ("Danse", "Un Ange Est Tombé"), elegant twists and turns with celtic undertones ("Kalpataru", "L'enfant Du Gwenwed"), a self-duet with a voice from a grainy vinyl juxtaposed with a whispery modern voice ("Ce Qu'il Reste...") , and even what sounds like a sample of the opera Carmen, in one of the most surprising, vocally explosive and all-around fun songs of the album, "Putain De Grand Amour". Emotionally tense ballads such as "Mirage" are also some of the highlights. Even the weakest song of the bunch, "Deux Ils Deux Elles" - the official first single, supporting homosexuality and love as a universal, not just heterosexual, truth -, is pleasant enough to fit in without bothering.
The voice feels limitless and, sometimes, almost hard to believe, in the best way possible, because of the impressive ways in which it approaches certain heights and lengths. It would be wrong to say that this is the Lara Fabian of the 90's, though. This is a much better singer, with a larger technical arsenal and far more artistic wisdom. It is worth noting that a great job was made in the production of the album, keeping the sound of her voice natural and well blended with the instrumentation that backs her. A gritty quality that Fabian intentionally adds to her voice in occasion (notably, in "La Vie Est Là") also helps build this organic sound. One of the flaws of Mademoiselle Zhivago, Lara Fabian's previous musical release, commercialized mostly in Eastern Europe, was, precisely, overproduction, with a certain use of echoes and reverbs that rendered Lara Fabian's vocal tracks somewhat artificial, as good as they sounded.
Le Secret is, undoubtedly, Lara Fabian's best album of her career, one that redefines her as a truly inventive craftswoman that can go beyond the typical boundaries of the adult contemporary universe of her music, something she had never accomplished as completely in the past.
After the release of the album in April 15, with two live showcases on the same day in the Théâtre de Paris, an international concert tour follows, with stops, among others, in Belgium, France, Switzerland, Canada, Ukraine, Moscow's Kremlin Palace in Russia and, especially, the famous Carnegie Hall, in New York, USA, in December 27, 2013.
Discover this secret in record AND live, if you can. You will enjoy it.
Watch "Deux Ils, Deux Elles", Le Secret's First Single
- Lara Fabian's Le Secret in Amazon - Click Here To Order Now!
The newest and long awaited album of Lara Fabian, to be released in April 15, 2013, with 17 new songs and several musical interludes that provide a unique and continuous musical experience lasting for almost two hours. Get immersed in this universe!