Jacques Brel

Pierre et le Loup/L'histoire de Babar

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The rarest Jacques Brel album of all is also, in terms of perpetuating his legend as one of Europe's greatest singer/songwriters, the most dispensable. Like David Bowie addressing himself to infant son Zowie with his own late-'70s retelling of Prokofiev's best known musical epic, Brel's take on the stories of (on one side) Peter and the Wolf and (on the other) Babar the Elephant makes a charming addition to his canon, and adds a further facet to his role of well-rounded entertainer. But that's as far as it goes. Accompaniment is by the Parisian Orchestre des Concerts Lamoureux, conducted by Jean LaForge, and it is uniformly unobtrusive. From their point of view, Babar is probably the better performance of the two, if only because you have less well-known varieties with which to compare it. Brel's own performance, too, is inspired, although the fact that it is in his own accented French probably renders that of academic value to the English-speaking listener.

Track Listing

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