Mediavolo, hailing from France, is a band that consists of Geraldine Le Cocq, whose engagingly rapturous voice is the heart of this album, and multi-instrumentalist Jacques Henry, whose music can be considered the solid ground that Le Cocq’s voice soars above. She possesses a voice that is not dissimilar to The Sundays’ Harriet Wheeler’s own hypnotic vocals, albeit softer, almost to the point that the entire album can be compared favourably to The Sundays.
However, Mediavolo is distinctively their own. This 12-track album is musically imaginative and wrapped in what is referred to as Romantic Wave, a gothic pop that is sweet as sugar. The music is very dreamy and enveloping. The songs of A Secret Sound unveil a perfect merge of one’s lyrics (generally dark, full of desire and heartbreak) and another’s musical applications to those lyrics.
I love the opening of “Mass Anaesthesia,” which effortlessly reminds of the piano opening for Theme From A Summer Place (Percy Faith) and which shows up at several locations within the song. Geraldine Le Cocq’s explores the wonderment of mass numbness, where, instead of having to deal with life’s pains – and richness – it’s become much easier to exist effortlessly within a framework of nothingness.
Equally as beautiful is “Misunderstanding,” a ‘can’t get her out of my mind’ song that engages with “Can’t stop going wrong, since I got her dart in my heart.” The biographical “Death and the City” recounts the Ripper’s run through London and the social climate that allowed him to exist.
If you are a fan of The Sundays and, to a smaller degree, Cocteau Twins (there are a lot of swirling guitars here and Geraldine can be difficult to follow even though a lyric sheet is provided), then the brilliance that is encased in 12 songs of this album, A Secret Sound, is very rewarding and best not ignored.
We may have missed Harriet Wheeler immensely but now that Geraldine Le Cocq and Mediavola is here, I no longer need that fix. I just need to find Mediavolo’s previous two albums to catch up and get lost in.