Various Artists

Femmes de Paris, Vol. 2

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Femmes de Paris, Vol. 2 follows the same format as volume one: French-sung, female-sung pop/rock of the 1960s. Indeed, the 19 tracks include performances by some of the same artists featured on the first volume, among them Jacqueline Taieb, Adele, Liz Brady, Elisabeth, and Brigitte Bardot. Bardot's the only name that will be familiar to the average '60s pop fan, with the exception of Petula Clark, who was British of course, but did spend much time in France and often recorded in French (as she did with the track on this CD, a French-language cover of "Needles and Pins"). It probably won't insult fans of this style to note that this isn't particularly deep stuff; even in comparison with the best French female pop/rock singers of the 1960s, it's on the frivolous and fluffy side. If you're in the mood for a dose of that, however, this predictably delivers the goods, with enough variety to ensure that anyone with a taste for the genre will like some of the tracks (and probably dislike some too). Besides Clark, no one stands out as a particularly good vocalist, but they usually sing with engaging joie de vivre on tunes that range from go-go ye-ye music to the occasional fairly tough rocker (Cleo's "Et Moi et Toi Et Soie," Liz Brady's Bo Diddley-ish "Hey O Daddy O"), bouncy pop with a British mod influence, and the insufferably cloying (Elisabeth's "Madame Superman," which has repartee with a grating, roaring male voice). Bardot's "Ecoute Le Temps" is the classiest track here, both for its expectedly sexy vocal and its nicely graceful pop-easy listening tune and arrangement.

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