Grandeur mature

Grandeur mature

Quebec singer-songwriter Émile Bilodeau made a modest name for himself in his teens competing in music competitions, which is where he was discovered by Dare to Care/Grosse Boîte label head Eli Bissonnette, who signed his poetic—though self-deprecatingly humorous—2016 debut, Rites de passage. While the title of this follow-up suggests that a certain amount of growing up has happened since then, little can contain Bilodeau’s spirited creativity. Uptempo opener "Robin des Bois" jokes metaphorically about his fate as a bargain-basement archer who can’t shoot straight but still dreams of being like Robin Hood. He gets funky on “Candy," rapping surprisingly well about himself—a guy who, as he freely admits, doesn't know much about life—while ruminating on people's urge to party as the world burns. The commentary continues on the bittersweet "Freddie Mercury," a celebration of difference that decries sexism, racism, and homophobia without coming off as preachy—all punctuated by a fluttering coda from Klô Pelgag. Smart, pertinent, and delightfully whimsical, it's Bilodeau at his best—and he’s still just getting started.

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