Isabelle Boulay

Nos Lendemains

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Part of the Franco-country movement in Quebec, but entirely separate in tone from some of the older notables, Isabelle Boulay takes a more modern, more somber approach to her music, as shown on Nos Lendemains. The tone on her 2008 album is generally one of mild sadness, with Boulay imbuing her vocals with just a touch of melancholy. The tone, however, is served extraordinarily well by Boulay, fitting herself into the mood precisely and carrying the listener through a form of modern country music that doesn't come off as manufactured or simple, but instead suggests a Western take on something like Portuguese fado. The blues is inherent in her delivery, and her vocals can silkily portray that melancholy without becoming another drop in the proverbial river of down-spirited country music. With the exception of a couple of foreign-language pieces, the majority of Nos Lendemains is written specifically for Boulay (largely by French pop songwriters, with a few major names included), and capitalizes on the quality of her voice. Her quiet vocal tinkerings can easily outshine the boldest attempts to perform a simple country song by some of the more stereotypical Francophone divas.

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