This album is only the fifth that the leader of the American noise group Dinosaur Jr has released since 1996 and the splendid Martin and Me. But the ultra-prolific man is multiplying his activities, including his historic group, active since the mid-1980s and his various collaborations. The only certified guitar hero of the grunge generation was a traveling companion of Nirvana and the Pixies and a pioneer of sorts, even if he escaped significant notoriety. Yet he is one of the most endearing American singer-songwriters currently active.

If he does not fundamentally modify his musical approach (drawling voice, ultra-saturated guitar, sparkling chorus) Mascis seems peaceful on this new record. And the acoustic guitars give more shine to the rhythms woven by this tireless multi-instrumentalist (he also plays drums and keyboards).

What Do We Do Now therefore sounds like a much more pop record than the production of the group he founded with Lou Barlow on the East Coast of the United States. Two special guests appear on the album: pianist Ken Mauri, member of B52s, who brings his virtuosity and inventiveness to the project. But also Matthew “Doc” Dunn on steel guitar. The king of country music gives a bit of Americana color to this collection of extremely well-crafted songs. Although he is approaching sixty, Mascis, antihero of the American alternative scene, has not given up on producing excellent music.

Alain Bashung died in March 2009, at the age of only 61. After a career that began in the mid-1960s, he became an absolute reference in French song and rock, whose impressive musical legacy we have continued to rediscover. This umpteenth compilation allows us to rediscover the different phases of the evolution of this imprudent man, who loved nothing more than to reinvent himself with each of his productions.

Between radio hits and quasi-experimental pieces, Bashung has never chosen, and it is this duality that gives the salt to this golden repertoire. From 1977, the release of his first album, Roman Photos, to the posthumous album Upstream, released in 2018, Bashung has never stopped sowing new ideas. The novelty of this anthology is the presence of something previously unpublished.

Recorded in 1982, when Bashung was leaving the shores of the album Pizza and its cohort of hits (Vertigo de l’amour), he created, with his group KGDD, a basis for work. Among these, a working version of the future Junge Männer from the album Play Blessures. Entitled On n’a pas l’air, to a text by Boris Bergman, it wonderfully completes Bashung’s journey in the early 1980s.