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The Nuc plus ultra: siblings from Australia and the echoes of Nico

Sixth album for the Australian duo formed by brother and sister Stone, folk singers and musicians who reconnect with their roots here.

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The Nuc plus ultra: siblings from Australia and the echoes of Nico

Sixth album for the Australian duo formed by brother and sister Stone, folk singers and musicians who reconnect with their roots here. Very popular in France, these two birds arrived in 2006 with beautiful songs, pop harmonies, folk culture and beautiful vocal complementarity. So many qualities that we find on this new album, which succeeds in combining freshness and experience. Indeed, before coming face to face, the two musicians were able to develop successful personal careers within different projects. Which gives all the more spice to this reunion which has nothing calculated but rather sounds like a spontaneous family reunion. Angus and Julia cut their teeth on a beautiful cover of Bob Dylan's I Want You, the gem from the 1966 masterpiece Blonde on Blonde. But their own compositions are not left out, which explore the psyche of two young people in their forties with strong experiences. Fifteen years after their classic Big Jet Plane and ten years after an album produced by Rick Rubin, this return through the back door constitutes a springtime celebration that it would be a shame to deprive ourselves of.

By sponsoring and financing the Velvet Underground, an American group formed by New Yorker Lou Reed and Welshman John Cale, Andy Warhol suggested that they use Nico's services on vocals. Model, actress, muse of Dylan and the Factory, this beauty who had a son with Alain Delon, had contributed to the glamorous dimension of the cult group, lending her serious tone and her Germanic accent to pieces like All Tomorrow's Parties and I'll Be Your Mirror. What no one expected was that she would disappear after this first album (the one with the banana) and begin a career as a solo singer. After a first attempt that was still timid and very folky, the young woman attracted the services of Jon Cale, dismissed by Lou Reed in his turn, to tackle a unique discography.

The Domino label, which houses Cale's production, had the good idea of ​​reissuing The Marble Index, from 1968, and Desert Shore, released two years later. We cannot underestimate these two records, which are too little known. The Marble Index marks the real beginning of the singer's solo journey, which delivers a gothic sound, very influenced by old Europe and marked by the harmonium played by Nico. At the edge of the avant-garde, the opposite of the rock reflexes of its time, this album produced by Elektra (label of the Doors and Love) will disconcert many. However, his influence will be preponderant in post-punk and new wave. Released two years later by Reprise, Desert Shore, still designed with the faithful Cale, hits the nail on the head. Janitor of Lunacy is a legendary piece from Nico's repertoire, which becomes more radical on this dark and haunted record. You have to love strong emotions, but Nico's tone and Cale's elegant production make this album a classic.

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