Vishtén Spins Acadian Delights

Vishtèn Vish004

We’ve come to expect exuberance and joy from Francophone music, but does it sound differently if it comes from outside Québec? What happens when Acadian music is played by twin sisters (Emmanuel and Pastelle LeBlanc) from Prince Edward Island, and a guitarist from the remote Magdalen Islands? And what new potage emerges when we take an Acadian roux and blend it with Mi’kmaq influences, Celtic melodies, and the occasional Moog synthesizer? That’s the mosaic that Vishtèn have been assembling for over a decade and which, on this, their fourth album, comes together in ways that blends the best of the past with just the right contemporary touches. The end product retains the famed ragged tune structure, the constant percussive patter of feet and call-and-echo vocals of Québéçois music, but make it come out in a detectably smoother way. Mōsaïk is, indeed, a collection of small pieces that combine in aesthetically pleasing ways. There are splashes of whimsy (Emmanuelle LeBlanc’s whistle-led instrumental “Tutti Fluti),” some bluesy drama (“Je Pars Pour un Voyage”), crisp guitar work from Pascal Miousse (“Pour Jacob’), and accordion/mouth harp/fiddle party-down tunes (such as “Tempête des Glaces”).  There’s even a moody arrangement of a song inspired by a First Nations legend, “L’Áme Á P’tit Jean,” which has a touch of surf guitar embedded in a meaty hook and supplemented by some spooky Moog. Got that? Trust me–you’ll like it. Rob Weir

Here's a bouncy little Francophone number.

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