Mélissa Laveaux is back with her third album, one which not only features a repertoire of traditional Haitian songs but is also a way to awaken people’s consciousness. The album – entirely performed in Haitian Creole (Laveaux was born in Canada to Haitian parents) – is called Radyo Siwèl and is out on No Format, the French label that has been releasing her music since her debut in 2008.
Draping the songs in an indie rock aesthetic, the singer-songwriter and guitarist has taken traditional tunes, vodou anthems and scraps and phrases discovered in old songbooks, and sewn them together like a patchwork of intersecting identities.
Recorded over just five days, Laveaux’s distinctive voice and sinuous guitar playing are burnished further by the shining presence on guitar and cuatro of Drew Gonsalves, leader of Trinidadian band Kobo Town, and the sound is given a dramatic, live feel by the French production team A.L.B.E.R.T. (Air, Tony Allen, Charlotte Gainsbourg).
She will play a London show on 13th April at Rich Mix. Get your tickets here.