Wednesday, 11 July 2012

10 Great Songs In Other Languages

Music is the universal language. You don't need to understand something to enjoy it. That's why when I hear people putting down heavier music or even some rap music saying things like "If I can't understand what they're saying it's not music" I always ask them about songs in different languages. There's some good stuff all over the's 10.

1. The Brilliant Green - "Ash Like Snow"

Hailing from Japan The Brilliant Green have modeled their craft after Western music which is why Tomoko Kawase sings almost half of the band's lyrics in English. "Ash Like Snow" is predominately in Japanese however and puts some of it's western inspirations to shame.

2. Noir Desir - "Le Vent Nous Portera"

The English translation is "The wind will carry us" and it's one of Noir Desir's biggest hits in the 21st century as this French band enjoyed the majority of their success in the 90's. Though they haven't been to widely known outside of France, Noir Desir are responsible for inspiring many young French groups. This song won them Album of the year and music video of the year (which left me quite sad, actually) in their native land.

3. Voodoo Glow Skulls - "El Coo Cooi"

Taken from their 1995 album Firme. The Voodoo Glow Skulls are from California and have a few members of Spanish decent. The term "El Coo Cooi" I believe is a term that Spanish people use to refer to monsters to scare kids into behaving. I could be wrong though.

4. Olivia - "A Little Pain"

I'm beginning to find that there are many songs by Japanese artists that not only have English titles, but are also sung partially in English. I suppose it has to do with the worldwide popularity of anime and Japanese culture. As it is it's almost impossible to find some of these Japanese songs that aren't mashed together with scenes from various Anime movies. Great song though....

5. Ashley MacIsaac - "Sleepy Maggie"

Looking back it was very impressive that MacIsaac's debut pop album Hi, How Are You Today was as successful as it was. Not surprising though, the songs were great. However, they were heavily influenced by East Coast celtic music and it's first single "Sleepy Maggie" had only Gaelic lyrics, sung by the talented Mary Jane Lamond. It's almost a shame he couldn't recapture the magic of it.

6. Hakan Hellstrom - "Kann Ingen Sorg For Mig Goteborg"

Sweden is generally known for giving the music world ABBA and Ace of Base, but it's also produced Hakan Hellstrom who sings in his native tongue. I'm not going to pretend I know what he's singing about, but I believe he is lamenting for his hometown of Gothenburg. More of this please

7. The Mars Volta - "L'Via L'Viaquez"

This song is one of the masterpiece opuses from The Mars Volta's album Frances The Mute. The album itself is extremely experimental, hypnotic and addicting. "L'Via "L'Viaquez" clocks in around the 12 minute mark, features RHCP's Jon Frusciante on solo duties and has singer Omar Rodriguez-Lopez wailing in Spanish.

8. Perfume - "Chocolate Disco"

I don't know if this song is actually called "Chocolate Disco" or that's just how it's known outside of Japan because thats what it sounds like they're saying. Either way you will listen to this song and you will watch it again...and it's not just because the girls are insanely cute. Ok, maybe it is....

9. Vanessa de Mata - "Boa Sorte" feat. Ben Harper

de Mata is a Brazilian singer with a slew of hits under her belt. "Boa Sorte" or "Good Luck" was introduced to me as I was heading to a Spanish speaking island for a relaxing vacation and I was in search of music to get me in the mood. It didn't take Ben Harper's contributions to get me hooked, de Mata's soulful voice and the songs peaceful cadence were more than enough...been a fan ever since

10. Sublime - "Caress Me Down"

Bradley Nowell had a one track mind...well ok, maybe a two track mind, but in this song he got into explicit detail about one of his favourite pass times. Check out the English translation for the song's Spanish finale to get what I mean

Merci mes amis!!


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