Typically I loathe the actor turned singer/songwriter schtick. But Charlotte Gainsbourg is the exception. The arbiter of everything cool and indie, the woman can do no wrong. At least in my eyes, but I admittedly have a crush. So let me break it down for you and see if you agree.
She’s the daughter of British actress, singer and style icon Jane Birkin and French actor/singer Serge Gainsbourg. (That pedigree alone is enough cool quotient to last a lifetime.) Is a critically acclaimed, award winning actress in her own right with an impressive roster of cool indie films under her belt – like La Bûche, Jane Eyre, Lemming. This year she won Cannes Film Festival Best Actress for her role in Antichrist. Musically, she’s turned out two albums and has worked with the likes of her father Serge, Madonna and French pop star Etienne Daho. And her upcoming album, IRM, was produced by non other than Beck himself.
Due out January 26, the minimalist album title, IRM, (French for MRI) was inspired by Gainsbourg’s frequent MRI’s she endured after suffering a brain hemorrhage from a water-skiing accident in 2007. “I had to do so many [MRIs] and every time I was in that tube I was thinking it would make great music,” she’s quoted as saying. And great music it did make. Her lyrics on the album’s single, “IRM”, offer a detailed, psychedelic journey into her experience and sets the tone for the album. Which, you can hear, is amazing.
Only Charlotte can make an MRI cool and straddle the realms of indie film and music with credibility and aplomb. She’s effing rad. If I could be half as cool as her I’d be so happy.