Saturday, September 6, 2008


So, I'm sitting at my writing desk, cranking out pages and listening to CAMILLE.

Who, exactly, is Camille? Well, I didn't know who she was until a month ago either. She's this cool, avant-garde French singer/songwriter who's just fantastic. Not only are the songs excellent, but her voice is just... special. It's not just the range, it's also the way she sings around words and syllables. The way she seems to attack language, but still maintain a fragile clarity at the same time. The way she uses her voice as its own instrument...

Damn awesome stuff.

Sometimes weird, sometimes beautiful, but always inescapably enchanting.

Check out the clip below in which Camille, sans band, uses sampled triggers of her own voice to create a musical bed over which she then sings... WILD, INSPIRING STUFF, eh?!

The picture below is from her first album, "Le Sac des Filles," and it's quickly gone into heavy rotation on my iTunes playlists.

Of course, this got me to thinking -- "What do I listen to when writing?" The thing I've noticed most is that I can't listen to anything with words (in English), because if I do, I end up concentrating too much or getting distracted by lyrics. Which means I write to a ton of instrumental stuff. So without further ado, here are my top ten favorite CDs to write to:

1. "Batman Begins" Soundtrack - Hans Zimmer & James Newton Howard
2. "Live Evil" - Miles Davis (pictured above)
3. "Symphonic Holocaust" - Morte Macabre
4. "Dusty Trails" (the instrumental tracks) - Dusty Trails
5. "The Amazing Pudding" (and other instrumentals) - Pink Floyd
6. "Le Sac des Filles" - Camille
7. "De Futura" (and anything else this crazy by) - Magma
8. "Ghosts I-IV" + "Various Instrumentals from The Fragile" - Nine Inch Nails
9. "The Fog" & "Prince of Darkness" Soundtracks - John Carpenter
10. "Nocturnes" - Claude Debussy

That Claude's a snappy dresser, eh? Maybe I should try a bow tie sometime...

OK. Time to stop procrastinating and go back to work...


Wavedeform said...

Have you seen Imogen Heap also doing live vocal looping? Not as atmospheric, but still interesting.

Here's an example.

Sarah-Enid said...

Yay, new artist to explore! Thanks for the

I'm the same way about music while writing- I prefer a lack of lyrics or languages I don't speak, so I listen to a lot of NiN, Explosions in the Sky, Angels of Venice, and (sigh, hate to admit to this weakness) J-pop.

Susanna said...

Okay, so instrumental music is good for screen writing, check. Question, how do you get the job of my dreams, screen writing?