Reviews and quotes about Kristof’s Nice Place album
Kristof Robert’s new album is a delight. The songs are gentle and lovely and delivered in a charming French accent with some lovely guitar picking. A lovely peaceful album to listen to while travelling along, it takes us on a journey to a gentler place, interspersed with the birdsong of the sparrow and the starling. ‘Nice Place ‘ by Kristof Robert is indeed a nice place to visit and to linger awhile. I hope you enjoy this album as much as I did.
It may have taken many years to complete, but NICE PLACE, a ten-track, all-original Album by Kristof Robert has been well worth the wait ! It’s a disarming, charming and fascinating collection of Songs, all but one composed by Kristof himself, delivered, unashamedly, mostly in English, but with a mild and pleasant French accent. Sonically, this is a NICE PLACE to be!
There’s one all French Song, L’OISEAU LECTEUR, which to my [ Irish ] ears would not be out of place in any cool Music Club in France, and bucket-loads of beautifully crafted Songs of Love, Nature and Romance. Throughout this Recording there is wonderful Instrumental work on Dobro, Guitar, Upright and Electric Bass, and Acoustic Guitar, all underpinning the charming Vocals from Kristof. Gay Brazel is outstanding on Dobro, an instrument that really supports the Songs in a Melodic way ; a project which resonates with a rootsy earthiness throughout.
Standout Tracks for me, on first listen, were NICE PLACE, STARLINGS and SEARCHING. The latter bringing to mind influences by people like RY COODER and LEO KOTTKE, though still managing to sound very original. IN THE DIRT is a striking Song about the tragic loss of young life and the heartbreak of Mothers who were so poorly treated in dark times. ANOTHER MAN’S WOUND, composed by Seamus McGrath, and arranged by Kristof, has all the feel of an Anti-War Song, and NICE TO SEE YOU, is accompanied by some very deft Finger-style Guitar playing. There’s even a stand-out , straight-ahead Rock ‘n’ Roll Song called LEO’S GUITAR which nicely illustrates the versatility of the Music on this fine Album.
To top it off, the Artwork and Sleeve Notes are just stunning, and include all the Lyrics of the Songs, as well as full credits for all the contributors. As they used to say, well-worth checking out at your Local Record Store ! This is a ROOTSY, ORIGINAL GEM, and comes highly recommended by this Music Fan! Well done, to all concerned.
Kristof Robert has the bilingual soul of an artist. But in any language, these are beautiful, well crafted songs, with just the right production and sung from the heart.
This album is a delightful blend of influences.’L’oiseau Lecteur’ (The Reader Bird) is sung in French, the rest of the album is sung in English, with a French accent, which somehow adds a further element of warmth to the tracks.
‘L’oiseau Lecteur’ has a relaxed Cajun-ish feel to the singing (I haven’t translated the rest of the lyrics, so I’ve no idea what it’s about, but it’s a gentle listen) though a slide guitar rather than a fiddle or accordion; ‘Nice To See You’ is even more bluesy, reminding me of the gentler feel of Mississippi John Hurt’s ‘Louis Collins’; ‘Starlings’ bops lightly along; ‘Leo’s Guitar’ is early rock’n’roll, though the French accent gives it a very different feel.
The lyric of ‘Another Man’s Wound’ hits you softly over the head – a religious lyric perhaps, but one also applicable more generally to the way we build on the sacrifices of previous generations: “you died that we’d live and be free” …. “did you fight for that freedom in vain” … “it’s easy to talk now you’re gone, or to sleep on another man’s wounds”. Rather powerful, particularly because of its softer delivery.
The remainder of the album exerts a similar pull, it’s very listenable, gently arranged and played and with some rather neat musical touches – the guitar, say, on ‘Searching’ and ‘Hungry Midges’, the harmonies on ‘In The Dirt’, and the final snuggle of ‘The Sky Is Blue’ which ends the album. If you look on Robert’s Facebook page, you’ll be introduced to each of the musicians on the album – a talented bunch.
I rather like Nice Place. I’ve noticed that I’ve used words like: delightful, warmth, gentle, even snuggle. Have a listen.
Kristof Robert is a Frenchman with a taste for the blues who now lives in Ireland. His debut album Nice Place, is surprisingly delicate with Kristof’s accent giving it a charm of its own. All but one of the songs are in English and all but one are Kristof’s own – the exception is by an Irishman.