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Irm (2 LP Vinyl)

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Vinyl, January 26, 2010
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Editorial Reviews

January 26th, 2010 marks the Because Music / Elektra release of Charlotte Gainsbourg's third studio album titled IRM. The title is derived from M.R.I, which reflects the medical procedure Charlotte had to go through after suffering a head injury in a water skiing accident in 2007. The album is Charlotte's most personal to date, and is produced by acclaimed Grammy nominated artist/multi-instrumentalist Beck.

What started as a brief recording session between Charlotte Gainsbourg and Beck ended up to be the body of work that is IRM. Over the course of a year and a half of writing and recording together, Beck's role grew to encompass all aspects of the creative process. He worked seamlessly with Charlotte co writing the lyrics and produced and mixed the recording. (This is the first time he has ever been so involved in another artist's work.)

The title track from IRM was posted online as a free download via her official website on October 9th, and the official album trailer was featured on Pitchfork.com the same day. The official first single off the album is "Heaven Can Wait" featuring Beck. A video featuring the two stars premiered on AOL Music on November 18th.

Sonically, the album is a new direction for Charlotte Gainsbourg and her first in nearly four years. Beck's iconic and spacey production blends flawlessly with Charlotte's unique vocals and delivery. The release will be accompanied by a US promo tour in early 2010. Gainsbourg also recently graced the pages of Rolling Stone, Esquire, Vanity Fair, Nylon Magazine, Village Voice (cover), New York Times, Blackbook, Harper's Bazaar and more.

1. Master's Hands
2. IRM
3. Le Chat du Café des Artistes
4. In The End
5. Heaven Can Wait
6. Me And Jane Doe
7. Vanities
8. Time Of The Assassins
9. Trick Pony
10. Greenwich Mean Time
11. Dandelion
12. Voyage
13. La Collectionneuse

Product Details

  • Vinyl (January 26, 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Atlantic
  • ASIN: B0030GBUAK
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #496,787 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Amazon's Charlotte Gainsbourg Store


Image of album by Charlotte Gainsbourg


Image of Charlotte Gainsbourg


Heaven Can Wait


In these ever-changing times, the world at large is still ready to embrace new music that dares to express a different sensibility and challenge its audience’s preconceptions. Such is the case with the new album by Charlotte Gainsbourg. For her third venture into record making, the much-loved actress enlisted the aid of one of America’s most prolific and multi-gifted natural ... Read more in Amazon's Charlotte Gainsbourg Store

Visit Amazon's Charlotte Gainsbourg Store
for 16 albums, 5 photos, videos, discussions, and more.

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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See all 25 customer reviews
If her first album had really the 'Air' sound, this one sounds like a Beck album.
All in all you will hear the Beck/Charlotte collaboration and if you like/respect either, you will NOT be disappointed.
Both are incredibly innovative by themselves, the pairing makes this record doubly artistic.
Mark Abrahamsen

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By J. Loudon on January 30, 2010
Format: Audio CD
Chalotte Gainsbourg has had a rollercoaster of a life since the release of her last album, 5:55 in 2006. In 2007, she played Claire, a French artist who became one of Bob Dylan's wives in the movie I'm Not There. The same year, she fell victim to a water skiing accident that violently shook her brain and could have easily paralyzed or killed her. After undergoing emergency surgery, Charlotte was miraculously fine, but she had numerous M.R.I. scans afterwards to verify her stable condition. The title of this new album, the French term for M.R.I., clearly reflects Charlotte's mindset as this new album was produced.

Although Charlotte is the sole vocalist on all but one of the tracks on IRM, a great deal of the creative control on this solo record, including the majority of the songwriting credit, is given to Beck Hansen, commonly known as Beck. From the first measure of "Master's Hands," the lead track on IRM, Beck's influence is easily recognizable. Gainsbourg had already seemed to channel Beck's Mellow Gold on 5:55, but IRM captures the more experimental and percussive side of Beck heard on "Modern Guilt," Beck's most recent release.

The title track, "IRM", cleverly uses sample sounds of a running M.R.I. machine as the lyrics "Take a picture, what's inside? Ghost image in my mind" are sung by an intentionally emotionless Gainsbourg. While references to her life after the accident are not always so blatantly present, they can often be found hidden within a verse or chorus; Beck's obvious attempt to keep the music relative to the artist singing. The only track on which Beck does sing, Heaven Can Wait, he and Charlotte share nearly every word with a perfect balance.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Paul Allaer TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 8, 2010
Format: Audio CD
Charlotte Gainsbourg is a well-known actress, but with a serious musical legacy, being the daughter of Serge Gainsbourg, the French music icon. She's made a couple of interesting albums over the years, her 2006 album "5:55" being quite good. For her new album, Charlotte enlisted the help of Beck, and his presence looms large over this album.

"IRM" (13 tracks; 42 min.) sound to me like a new Beck album, sung by Charlotte, not that I'm complaining. Beck wrote 12 of the 13 tracks on here, and the songs contain the quirkiness you would expect from Beck, but it must be said that Beck wrote the songs just perfectly to Charlotte's personality. The first 2 tracks set the table, "Master's Head" and "IRM" are just fun, dance-along tracks. Next comes "Le Chat du Cafe des Artistes", a moody tune with Charlotte's sultry French lyrics, just great. "In the End" is a short 2 min. interlude that plays perfectly to Charlotte's vocals. "Heaven Can Wait" is a great little song that should find airplay if commercial mainstream radio was any good still (which of it isn't). Most of the songs are pretty short, they make their musical point and move on, and that's just peachy with me. "Vanities" is as haunting as you'll ever hear. "Trick Pony" is a hard-charging short tune that I just love. The album closes with two of its best tunes, the quirky upbeat "Voyage" and the closer "La Collectionneuse" which sums up the album perfectly (and at 5 min. is the longest track on here).

What a fantastic album this is from start to finish. Charlotte is scheduled to play Coachella in April, and this is surely one of the most anticipated sets for me. If you are on the fence about this album, but like Beck, by all means, buy this, you will not be disappointed.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Andrew Vice on January 26, 2010
Format: Audio CD
The best way for me to describe IRM is as the long-awaited follow-up to Sea Change/Mutations-style Beck, only sans the Beck. I mean, Beck did most of the writing, recording, and producing, but his singing on the record is sparse. Like with Sea Change, Beck's father provides excellent string arrangements, and they really add to the chill atmosphere of the album. IRM is sleek and sexy, and the best example of the album's mood is in "La Chat du Café des Artistes," a rhythmic French number that very obviously brings to mind Sea Change's excellent "Paper Tiger." This is a very cool record, and I really got into it after only one listen, which isn't very common for me, but I think if you give it a shot, you'll see what a mean. Charlotte has a beautiful, sultry voice that she marries perfectly with Beck's production style. This is a record for any Beck fan and anyone still waiting for a new Beck album in the vein of Mutations and Sea Change. Get it while it's hot and steamy.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mark Abrahamsen on February 23, 2010
Format: Audio CD
I've been a huge fan of Beck of a long, long time, I have nearly every single Beck record (I don't have the counterpart to One Foot In The Grave, yet). So, when I heard he was producing this record, that got me interested. Just her alone is impressive, but his part in it makes all that much better. I think her other records are very much worth getting as well, I wish I'd heard of her sooner. Both are incredibly innovative by themselves, the pairing makes this record doubly artistic. I'll definately be listening to this one for years to come.
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