When Alain Bashung hit it big in 1981 – Gaby oh Gaby was in the French charts for 54 weeks and sold a million copies –, they called him the „Johnny Hallyday de la New Wave“. Actually, the Gallic super-antistar who garnered eleven Victoires de la Musique awards between 1985 and 2009, sounded all-too-often more like a campfire Paolo Conte merging voguish Bowie attitude with an unhealthy Dylan obsession, stadium grandiloquence style – including a whole lot of obnoxious Frenchican Rock Bummers (see here), but also some significantly dazzling results, especially on 82’s Play Blessures, then teaming up with lyricist Serge Gainsbourg (!) who probably would have liked to inflict those wounds himself: Combining lupine lamentos with early 80s No Wave splinters, this is French Rock’s Metallic K.O., with unmistakably hypnotic qualities.
Alain Bashung – J’envisage
Alain Bashung – Bistouri scalpel
Alain Bashung – Junge Männer
From the recently released Dimanches a l'Elysée live-album, one of Guuzbourg's favourite Bashung-songs:
Alain Bashung - La nuit je mens