After a few years spent in bands as rich and complementary as Aside Beside or more recently Two the West (*), Lion Says marks a new step in Lionel’s Giardina’s musical career. Life style change and new address have also offered new musical horizons and have given birth to a new artistic project. This first solo album is a finely arranged and electrified piece that returns in its own way to the roots of Folk music.
The first quality of New Folk is its ability to take the listener to familiar territories. One may think of Midlake or FleetFoxes’luxuriant Neo Folk. Hear reminders of Nick Drake’s melancholic arpeggios or Girls in Hawai’s radiantly majestic Pop. Dylan’s shadow may be seen in the background too. But Lion Says’ brio is somewhere else. New Folk is about opening perspectives, moving beyond the codification of specific musical genres. A fascinating balance shines throughout the album : vocal harmonies, guitars and violins develop a broad sound palette, at times dark and at others particularly bright.
Lion Says draws his listeners into a luminous and exhilarating sound maze without tiring them or falling into a pointless stylistic exercise. This is also why this piece of music is a genuine achievement. Far from copycats and straight out of school song writers, Lion says manages to escape the all too common prison of artistic influences and reaches us through a singular and personal language.
Julien Perrin (Froggy’s Delight)
Aside Beside (SSI Records/Musea Records) Two the West (SSI Records/Socadisc/Believe)