TamTam Books News

Saturday, December 07, 2002:

Boris Vian: "possibles et impossibles" Universal Mercury CD

We can all thank Universal Mercury (France) for re-releasing this album from 1956 -featuring the swinging "Brechtian" singing style of Boris Vian and his witty lyrics. "possibles et impossibles" articulate Vian’s attitude towards life in such songs as "Je Bois" (I Drink) and "Je Suis Snob" (I am a Snob) with a mixture of his contempt for those who do war as a business, for instance "Les Joyeux Bouchers" (The joyous Butchers) and "Le Déserteur."

Alain Goraguer, who co-wrote five songs on this album, was also renowned for working with Serge Gainsbourg as well as writing the ultra-cool soundtrack for Vian’s (much hated film version of) "J’irai cracher sur vos tombes" and his 70’s masterpiece "La Planete Sauvage." The other co-songwriter on this album Jimmy Walter I know little to nothing – except in the 60’s he worked with Brigitte Fontaine and Jacques Higelin. Here he co-wrote four songs as well as serving as Vian’s pianist.

The music on this album swings from 50’s pop to stylized Brecht/Weil theater songs. These recordings put across to the listener the personality that was known as the Prince of St-Germain. An artist who was toasted by everyone from Cocteau to Duke Ellington. Although technically Vian was not a great singer, but he does convey a certain attitude in assigning revulsion and scorn with regard to his subject matter of contemporary pop culture via the 50’s. I would think it would be essential to own this recording as well as Vian’s literature.

The songs are: "Les Joyeux Bouchers" (J. Walter-B. Vian), "Bourrée de complexes" (A. Goraguer-B. Vian), "La java des bombes atomiques" (A. Goraguer- B. Vian), "On n’est pas la pour se faire engueuler" (J. Walter – B. Vian) "Je Bois" (A. Goraguer – B. Vian), "Je suis snob" (J. Walter – B. Vian), "Le Déserteur" (B. Vian), "Complainte du Progrés" (A. Goraguer – B. Vian)," Cinématographe" (J. Walter – B. Vian) and "Le Petit Commerce" (Goraguer – B. Vian).

Tosh // 4:38 PM

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