Drone Records
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Format: CD
Label & Cat.Number: Crammed Discs CRAM103
Release Year: 2003
Note: re-issue of great album from 1982 with truly innovative Avantgarde-Pop; has diverse bonus-tracks & live-material
Price (incl. 19% VAT): €13.00

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"Fronted by the late Yvon Vromman, The Honeymoon Killers were a provocative band with a strong pop sensibility. This album made them the darlings of the music press all around Europe (including in the UK, a rare feat for a French-singing act), and their delirious live shows gained them a strong following. Les Tueurs also included vocalist Vronique Vincent, Gerald Fenerberg, Jeanf Jones Jacob and Aksak Maboul/Crammed originators Marc Hollander & Vincent Kenis.

The album originally came out in 1982. It was first re-issued on CD in 2003, augmented with 4 previously-unreleased live tracks from 1981 (with Aksak Maboul), a track recorded for a NME tape, and the 3 tracks from the "Subtitled Remix" EP (it had been strongly suggested to the band that they could broaden their audience if they recorded English versions of their songs. The Killers chose instead to subtitle them, or rather to add new, English-speaking characters to the songs: The Copter-hater, who lives a parallel story to that of the heroin of Histoire Suivre, Mummy and Jason who comment the actions of the quarelling couple in J4, and Dr Stone, Max and Colonel LaFivre, who turn the instrumental Ariane into a mini-space opera entitled A Deep Space Romance)." [label info]


Les Tueurs by Gilles Verlant:
"The main quality and the main problem of the Honeymoon Killers is that they saw everything in duplicate. It's a recurrent drama with Belgians in general and artists in particular: they are often seriously schizophrenic. Let's start with their name. The Honeymoon Killers, like Leonard Kastle's 1970 film about a couple of serial killers ? Or Les Tueurs de la Lune de Miel, with this amusing contrast between menacing (Tueurs) and comforting words (Miel) ? They can't decide, so they'll put both names on the cover and the public will have to sort it out for themselves. And then who's the leader, or at any rate, who gets photographed for the press ? Is it Yvon Vromman, who is unshaven and ugly with his big round nose, but makes you die laughing (actually he's the one who'll die, far too early), a real bundle of nerves, the kind of psychopath which blows up in your face as soon as something goes wrong ? Or is it the evanescent Vronique Vincent, an ex-model and journalist ? In 1982 the New Musical Express doesn't think twice: the girl will make the cover. You can imagine Yvon's face: after all, he's the one who started this band! In the end, this internal competition will undermine them and make them explode in mid-flight. But there was even more schizophreny in the Killers: they were clearly going in several musical directions at the same time. Raw energy stemming from punk and new wave on the one hand, and serious musical skills of some band members on the other. What united them is the desire to have laughs, to experiment, to subvert influences without giving a damn about what's in and what's out (and maybe that's why their songs haven't aged, which is a thing you can't say about that many albums recorded back in 1981 !). Hey guys, let's make provocative versions of songs by Sheila and France Gall (two French pop stars from the '60s) ! They were only slightly more respectful with Charles Trenet's classic "Route Nationale 7", which went on to become a radio hit in France, while the press went apeshit.
In reality, the Honeymoon Killers were a band from the 21st century which had unfortunately fallen into a spatio-temporal flaw. Today, all the things they were fighting for with their little fists tightly clenched (and their little tongues firmly screwed in their cheeks) have become totally obvious: being quirky and imaginative, not taking oneself too seriously, bravely mixing electro-and-pop-and-world-and-jazz etc. The Tueurs must absolutely reform. Yvon, don't act stupid, come back, all is forgiven !
[GV writes books and television programs. He is the author of the definitive Serge Gainsbourg biography.]