Bête Noireby Bryan Ferry
Hooking up with regular Madonna collaborator Patrick Leonard as the co-producer of this album proved to be just the trick for Ferry. Bete Noire sparkles as the highlight of Ferry's post-Roxy solo career, adding enough energy to make it more than Boys and Girls part two. Here, his trademark well-polished heartache strikes a fine balance between mysterious moodiness and dancefloor energy, and Leonard adds more than a few tricks that keep the pep up. Five out of the nine songs are Ferry/Leonard collaborations; all succeed, from "Limbo"'s opening punch and flow to the cinematic (and unsurprisingly French-tinged) feeling of the title track. The atmospheric, almost chilling "Zamba"'s minimal, buried drums, soft synths and doomy piano, make it the best of that bunch. Ferry's best moment here is all his own, though -- the great single "Kiss and Tell," with a steady, bold bassline leading the way for his slightly dissolute portrayal of mating rituals and all they entail. Like Boys and Girls, the album's supporting cast mixes a lengthy list of session pros with a few guest stars. David Gilmour returns, but even more interesting is the appearance of another guitar hero -- none other than Johnny Marr, hot on the heels of the Smiths' dissolution. He took the music of a Smiths instrumental, "Money Changes Everything," and made it the basis of a full collaboration, "The Right Stuff." Marr shows a little more fluidity than usual, likely thanks to the rhythm section's smooth, effortless groove, while Ferry steps to the fore with gusto. In sum, a great listen from start to finish.
- Release Date:
- Emi Europe Generic
Performance CreditsBryan Ferry Primary Artist,Harmonica,Piano,Vocals
Dan Wilensky Saxophone
Technical CreditsBryan Ferry Composer,Director,Producer
Ian Eales Engineer
Steve Jackson Engineer
Chester Kamen Producer
Kevin Killen Engineer
Patrick Leonard Composer,Producer
Simon Puxley Executive Producer
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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Bryan Ferry at his best. Moody, romantic, soothing, lush, luxe, rythmic, tribal, exotic. Lucious violin, soothing piano, tribal bongo..makes you think tango, samba...and of course the voice...Transports you to the south pacific, caribbean islands, Africa, Rio, anywhere, but here. It was an essential back in 1987 and is part of my top 100 albums of all time!