Following his much-mourned split from Girls, ex-frontman Christopher Owens has bounced back with debut solo album ‘Lysandre’. The LP narrates a love (“coming of age”) story which blossomed on the band’s first tour with a French girl named – you got it – Lysandre. The tale recounts Owens’ journey from San Francisco to New York and onto the French Riviera.
On 40-second opener Lysandre’s Theme, Owens transports the listener into a mythological world of flute notes and gentle guitar plucks. Complete with interludes of plane noises, the full-length does feel like an actual journey – in New York City we’re “sleeping in the back of pick-up trucks” then whisked away to the idyllic Riviera Rock. As the album comes to an end it’s the emotional journey that closes the LP – Part of Me (Lysandre’s Epilogue) forlornly states “Oh you were a part of me, but that part of me is gone”.
It’s different to Girls’ sound – Owens’ arrangements are more refined and delicate, and it’s all very sweet. At the same time, there’s a raw, open-wound honesty to Owens’ work, particularly in the track Love Is In The Ear Of The Listener where he doubts himself in plain view, singing “what if I’m just a bad songwriter and everything I say has been said before?” It’s just as well, then, that ‘Lysandre’ proves the opposite.
Stream Here We Go below, and head to The Line of Best Fit to hear the album in full.