Chantal Bellavance

Chantal Bellavance, yet another promising singer-songwriter emerges from Québec... And when the songs are tagged as "cutting crystalline pop" they have got to be worth a listen, non?

It would appear that 27 year-old, classically trained, Chantal - sometime budding actress, model, cash-strapped fashionista (or "fashionista sans budget" as she writes) - could quite easily add another string to her bow as a singer-songwriter, if her recently released four-track EP "J'attends" is anything to go by.

"J'attends" hits you with a blast of retro-80's influenced synthesiser-pop - four vignettes of bitter-sweet slices of life, love, despondency and disillusionment - that are nigh on perfect. The EP is perfectly balanced; two up-tempo numbers "J'attends" and the down-right foot-tapping "Le matériau ne convient pas", both neatly sandwiching and counterpoising the slower yet still poppy "Serial lover" and the subdued ballad "Qui".

And then there is Chantal's (and yes it has to be said) crystal-clear voice, which like the middle-eight of the title track rises and soars, none more so than on "Qui" - which is rapidly becoming a favorite - with its sympathetic piano accompaniment and her laser-like vocals... cutting like a searchlight through the gloom.

Comparisons? Fanny Bloom springs to mind, but In terms of contemporary synth-pop and piercing vocals I'd look no further than synth-pop band Chvrches (who've also released a stunning debut album this year). While the Scottish trio are unashamedly more indie-pop, both share an ability to expertly mix electro-pop with distinctive vocals.

There's a nice video to accompany "J'attends"... Chantal's model deportment is put to good use in this one...

Chantal Bellavance on Bandcamp