The London Music Blog presents..... The Atelier
The Atelier are a six member band based in the West of London. Originally, all six members were session musicians in their own right. Brought together over the summer of 2011 by drummer Thomas Carli-Jarlier and vocalist Vasilisa Ilicheva, the band are best described as a jazzy-rocky- funky-pop meddle...and it works! Considering they have been together for less than a year, the two vocalists, drummer, pianist, bass and guitar players have gelled well. This is not generally the type of music that I would review, and to be honest I’ve always treated anything jazz as slightly suspect and tend to steer clear. The Atelier, however, have made me rethink my position about the genre.
The song itself ‘Gold’ instantly transports you from where you are and places your mind in an old school music club. Think film noir - you know the scene: smoke filled room, dimly lit, the smell of cigarettes, cigars and whiskey hanging heavily in the air. An easy going drum beat is introduced by a mellow bass line and accompanied by light touches of piano and guitar. Vasilisa’s voice lends itself well to complete the
scene, remorseful lyrics round off all the cliché’s I associate with jazz. But that is where it ends. The smooth, relaxed, jazzy verses are brilliantly punctuated by a rousing, punchy chorus, even allowing for some light guitar shredding as you are suddenly thrown into a rock-pop whirlwind without warning, before being unceremoniously dumped back into that dark melancholy where jazz rules.
Even though jazz is not my thing, for some reason that I can’t quite put my finger on I cannot stop listening to this song – much to the bemusement of everyone who knows me (quite the avid drum and bass fan). Could it be the strong rhythm section which adds much to the music, creating the energy of the chorus and setting the mood of the verses? Perhaps I am drawn to the way the melody and pace quickly change from verse to chorus and back again? It may be that the lingering vocals singing a song of what is heartbreak and the illusions we put ourselves under is what attracts me. Being honest, it all works and I believe I have fallen for the complete package.
One possible criticism of the song that could be made is that the song does revolve a lot around the chorus and does not feature very many verses, opening for argument that it is too focused on the hook (a catchy one at that). However, I feel this eclectic splicing of genres more than makes up for this ‘shortfall’ –if you can call it that. I have not heard a band with such a fresh twist on music, and with such a broad spectrum of musical influences that are easily identifiable before even reading their blurb.
The Atelier, for me, represent the most exciting aspect of musical talent and creativity. To take a genre that is much maligned by so many is a bold risk; trying to ‘modernise’ it is possibly even bolder and then adding rock and pop to it sounds just about crazy. I honestly did not
expect to be so enamoured with them. Gold, the new single, will probably not make it to number one in the charts but for me that is not the point of their music. It is a celebration of creativity and expression that does not simply embrace its roots and inspirations, but thrusts them right up to your face with a ‘yer now what?!’ attitude. Golden.
If you wish to know more about The Atelier, their new single Gold or any of their upcoming gigs, please visit www.facebook.com/theateliermusicwww.facebook.com/theateliermusic
or if you want to listen to some more from the band:
by Seb Hodgkiss