Hélène Renaut
...often recalls the broodingly ornate songs of Love’s Arthur Lee spiced with just a little dash of Revolver-era John Lennon.
— SF Bay Guardian
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@2019 Yvette Dudoit

 

About

“Imagine Syd Barrett and Françoise Hardy having a musical baby” - West Coast Folk’s best kept secret, Hélène Renaut’s French psych-folk explores that improbable territory where Leonard Cohen, Nick Drake and 60s girl groups would be having a party while Brahms is conducting a quartet in the other room. “Renaut’s voice is more unique and bewitching than her contemporaries or influences” (Eric Shea).

“Because she’s originally from France and sings elegant baroque-imbued folk-pop with a French accent, Hélène Renaut garners many comparisons to ‪Françoise Hardy‬. But comparisons aside, The Deer Convention resonates with the warm comforts of subtle Anglophilia – hints of British folk’s magic and whimsy surface slightly in songs like the enchanting title-track or “February’s Daughter” with its detuned ringing guitar tones and chantey inspired narrative. Renaut’s sophomore solo album (she used to front the Bay Area band Beam) was recorded by Papercuts’ Jason Quever with an audio vérité approach – mostly recorded live in one take to capture the moment on two-inch analogue tape. Renaut was accompanied by Donovan Quinn and Jasmyn Wong as well as by Matt Montgomery from Adam Haworth Stephens’ band and members of The Mumlers, resulting in a gorgeous album that plays with absolute human chemistry. From the harmonious opening song “The One” to the spare and sprightly “Silly” there is a palpable sense of relationship excitement among musicians and their instruments as well as a tinge of tension in their tasteful points of restraint.” - Eric Shea (Pandora, iTunes, Premier Guitar)