Les Biberons Bâtis

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There's only one word to describe this CD: nuts. Bruno Tanguay (aka Satan Bélanger, aka, the sole member of Les Biberons Bâtis) is a genuine nut. His music draws from Perrey-Kingsey's cartoonish space dances, mutant disco, the French alternative electro-pop of the '80s (Ludwig von 88, Ptôse), and more modern noise assaults. Tanguay uses vintage analog keyboards, home-built electronic devices, guitar, and bass. He rarely sings or speaks, but when he does so it is through a vocoder. And what he says -- in French -- is completely bonkers. "Les Bons Contacts" stages a telephone encounter between a fan of '80s alternative rock and a death metal collector. The title "Escalope Ma Salope" translates to "Scallop, You Bitch!" and makes little more sense to this reviewer, who understands French, than it would to those who don't. "Existe-t-Il une Nature Humaine" is the harshest track: free-form guitar noise and raging electronic textures back a soliloquy on the nature of man, lifted from old (and odd!) vinyl. A couple of tracks ("Elastic Dubstar," "Camisole de Boudin" -- which translates to "Blood Pudding Camisole") explore the darker realms of dub, while "The Smoocher" and "Je N'irai Pas Jouer Live" infiltrate the dancefloor with charming self-mockery. But despite all the humor and self-imposed stupidity, Tanguay/Bélanger's sound world remains bleak and menacing. His tunes are cold and uncomfortable. They hide horrible mutations under comedy masks. That's what gives this album its unique flavor, along with its resolutely retro-cynical stance.