Dead Belgian are a Liverpool-based band playing the music of Jacques Brel. They began life in 2007, inspired to share Brel’s music with all who would listen. Each member brought their own influences to the band, from European folk to progressive rock, stripping the songs to their bare bones and fattening them up again using a ramshackle drum kit, ukulele, guitar, accordion, saxophone, mandolin, clarinet and flute.
Dead Belgian have developed a playful and inventive sound that meshes dense melodic patterns, demonic waves of intensity and passages of sparse frailty with vocals that have drawn comparison to Edith Piaf, Anthony Hegarty and Nico. It is a sound unique to themselves while still capturing the beauty, passion and humour of the original work, a rousing and rowdy back-porch reinvention of Jacques Brel’s honest and poetic stories.
“Alternating between French and English, singer Fionnuala Dorrity sings the songs as Brel did - coquettish during ‘Madeleine’, passionate in ‘Ne Me Quitte Pas’ and tortured in ‘Au Suivant’. Highlight of the set though was the concluding ‘Le Moribond’, a rousing and upbeat version which will cast out memories of Terry Jacks and Westlife forever.”
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