A lovely, dark, haunting song with an intricate string arrangement; this really got me hooked on Gainsbourg as soon as I heard it. Musically, the song dazzles me - the arrangement flows beautifully and sounds very original (to me, anyway; if I'm wrong, please help steer me in the direction of more recordings like this!). Serge is a great vocalist here as well. At times he whispers, but some lines he really spits out - 'a quel point je HAIS......ce que tu es...' The guy was a genius.
03 May 01 ·Mike: I must agree with you (it seems pretty appropriate to do so as you introduced the song to me yourself a few years ago) - this is a very beautiful song, very beautifully and expressively sung, and the arrangement is frankly stunning. This is definitely one of those Gainsbourg tracks which really hits the heights in every department. Surely worth a listen, even to those who can't stand the bulk of Serge's output. 09 Apr 02 ·tempted: Scott Walker has some similarly haunting orchestral arrangements but as a singer he's a sheep whereas Serge's a wolf. A great sheep, though.
A super cool french vocal with an excellent organ sound running through it. Serge's jazzier output (showcased on the excellent 'du jazz dans le ravin' CD compilation) really blew me away when I first heard it, and this track is probably my favorite from this period.
from No. 4 available on CD - Du jazz dans le ravin (Philips)
24 Jul 01 ·tinks: i absolutely love this song, especially how serge just sounds so very...FRENCH! the way he draws out the word "twisteur" cracks me up every single time i hear it.
A slow number from Gainsbourg’s classic concept album, ‘Ah melody’ opens with that picked acoustic guitar sound which the group Air have now imitated and made one of their trademark sounds. The arrangement is very bare, with the guitar accompanied by just a vocal, bass, and a spikey, funky drum beat. Later in this short track, strings and Bacharach-style horns slip in and out of the mix, before everything stops abruptly. It’s a great track from what I find otherwise to be a slightly disappointing album.
from Histoire de Melody Nelson, available on CD (Philips)
09 Dec 01 ·e: ah delicado.... 03 Jan 02 ·Mike: Wonderful track; absolutely magic, and second only to "Manon" in Gainsbourg's output for me. In the context of the album, it's a kind of foil to the more vigourous remainder, an all-too-short lyrical interlude. 05 Sep 02 ·Liv: Stellar. "Histoire de Melody Nelson" is one of THE best concept records of all time..period.(But you don't have to understand French to appreciate this wicked album..) The lush string arrangements, interweaving deep&funky bass, Gainsborough's sleazily "seductive" voice:sometimes whispering,sometimes "singing"..all adds to the perfection. I will always treasure this album..
("Ah!Melody" is one of the "lighter" songs from the album as the overall atmosphere of the album is darker,creepier:a feeling of perversion, death & doomed love..) One of his best. Pure magic. 12 Mar 04 ·olli: got to love that. one of the definite highlights in his amazingly diverse output for me.
Melody Nelson is probably one of the best serge gainsbourg albums. he mumbles and sings about the fictional character Melody Nelson, a young red haired teenager. the opening track 'Melody' would've almost been enough to fill an entire album with: it's full of bass, violins and soft drums but it never comes across as being over the top. and that's what this album is: perfectly produced, orchestrated and beautiful... beautiful, yet quietly disturbing. "melody nelson" is a defining french album.
06 Dec 02 ·robert[o]: One of the BEST LPs ever, period, end of sentence!
Also - a great lost piece of the UK glam rock jigsaw, I think. Listen to this record, then listen to Bowie's "Ziggy Stardust" or "Aladdin Sane", Roxy Music's "Stranded" or "For Your Pleasure", even "The Slider" or "Tanx" by T. Rex. Serge's fingerprints are all over those records.