French artist, Romain Gutsy, has a new single out, If You See Her, and we’ve been taking a listen here at the Send Me Your Ears studio today.
This is Gutsy’s first single under his own name, having worked with several previous outfits over the years.
If You See Her is a peaceful and lilting folk song that conjures up an afternoon spent wasting away the hours in a little European Coffee House. It reminds us very much of times spent in France or Belgium and listening to the lilting Chanson style music played by a local entertainer.
The song starts gently on acoustic guitar and when the vocals come in they are deep and warm and low. Whilst singing in English, you can hear Gutsy’s French accent coming through very clearly in the verses. Not so much in the choruses as the melody reaches a little higher, but the low notes feel very much like French Chanson style Jazz.
The muted trumpet is a wonderful touch. It really adds to that Saturday afternoon in Paris feeling and the jazzy brushed snare drum is right up front and centre in the mix. There’s moments where the song feels slightly in a Klezmer style.
The voice itself has touches of Leonard Choen or Nick Cave because of its deep warmth, but it also has a uniqueness all of its own because of Gutsy’s accent.
There’s some lovely subtle keys in the background of the song that help fill out the overall sound.
The theme of If You See Her is asking the listener what they might say to an old love that they bump into, or perhaps a lost love who has passed.
If You See Her is quite a long song and as such may not be suitable for commercial radio air play, although we can imagine that this will do well for Gutsy on some more local smaller stations. It has a wonderful wonderful European feel to it.
For our own personal taste, we’d suggest a cut around 200 and 600Hz to balance out some of the boxy/honky frequencies in the overall song, especially in the vocal track. A boost around 150Hz will help balance out the bass and the overall low end and a shelf boost of the top 2 octaves will add a little brightness to the track, especially the vocals. There’s a peaking frequency in the muted trumpet around the 1500-1600Hz range that we’d suggest dipping out.
If You See Her is a solid production, and an interesting first solo song for this established artist. We are excited to hear what else is on offer from Romain Gutsy and look forward to the full album being released on April 11.