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Woodkid - S16

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S16

Woodkid

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Though nearly a decade separates Woodkid's The Golden Age and S16, it's almost impossible to tell at first. Arriving seven years after his 2013 debut album, Yoann Lemoine's second full-length is very much of a piece with his previous work; his songs still have so much musical and emotional richness that they feel like miniature symphonies. S16's opening track, "Goliath," is pure Woodkid: its bone-rattling beats and heroic strings evoke the giant's menace and David's bravery as well as Lemoine's own epic battle between toughness and vulnerability. He explored similar territory on The Golden Age's tale of a boy who turns himself into marble, and while S16 is less overtly conceptual than that album, it often feels more cohesive as Woodkid examines the crisis points of his relationships with others and himself. On "Drawn to You," the first hints of attraction are just as wrenching as a breakup; on "Highway 27," Lemoine sets the sinking realization that love is gone to stark, choppy percussion that makes for some of the album's most audacious sound design. "Reactor" is just as impressive, combining a children's choir, piano, and strings in a theatrical sweep that echoes Woodkid's score for the dance piece Les Bosquets. His songwriting on S16 is equally compelling in its clear-eyed insights into the spiritual and sensual dimensions of yearning and loss. Lemoine captures the ache of being loved by someone without being fully understood by them in the elegantly simple lyrics from "In Your Likeness": "I know I'm not made in your likeness/You're not made for my darkness." On "Pale Yellow," he sings, "My love for you will be gone/I will fix the pain on my own" like a wish instead of a certainty, and if his vocals are slightly more controlled here than they were in the Golden Age days, that only makes them more empathetic. Just when it feels like the album might be too dour, Lemoine turns up the heat with "So Handsome Hello," a seductive, commanding standout that delivers a seismic shift in mood. Moments like these make S16 worth the long wait for fans, and show that the scope and humanity of Woodkid's music has only grown with time.
© Heather Phares /TiVo

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S16

Woodkid

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1
Goliath
00:03:50

Steve Morris, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Louisa Fuller, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Christopher Parker, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Richard George, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Eliza Marshall, Bass Flute, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Worsey, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Burdge, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Ed Tarrant, Bass Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Pryce, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Everton Nelson, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Humphries, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Laurence, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Watkins, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Claire Orsler, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Sally Herbert, Conductor, Co-Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Sophie Harris, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Owen Slade, Tuba, AssociatedPerformer - Andy Wood, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Emlyn Singleton, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Pigott-Smith, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Bruce White, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Calina de la Mare, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Warren Zielinski, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Nick Barr, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Jackie Shave, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Anthony Pike, Bass Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Gavin McNaughton, Bassoon, AssociatedPerformer - Lucy Shaw, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Robson, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Clare Finnimore, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Laura Melhuish, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Anna Noakes, Bass Flute, AssociatedPerformer - Lucy Wilkins, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Reiad Chibah, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Simon Rayner, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Emil Chakalov, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - John Barrett, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Kurt Uenala, Vocal Engineer, StudioPersonnel - David Fuest, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Oli Langford, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Natalia Bonner, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Vicky Matthews, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Tabron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tanguy Destable, Producer, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Frederic Vectol, Vocal Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Tony Woollard, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Woodkid, Composer, Author, Producer, Co-Arranger, Piano, Recording Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Etienne Caylou, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Benjamin Esser, Composer, Author - Phazz, Producer, Additional Producer - Ryan Lott, Composer, Producer, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Pip Eastop, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Simms, Contra Bassoon, AssociatedPerformer - Félix Remy, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Brandon Peralta, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jenny Nendick, Orchestra Contractor, AssociatedPerformer - Cameron Masters, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Antoine “Chab” Chabert, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

An Island Records recording; ℗ 2020 Green United Music, under exclusive license to Universal Music GmbH

2
In Your Likeness
00:05:57

Steve Morris, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Louisa Fuller, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Christopher Parker, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Richard George, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Worsey, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Burdge, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Ed Tarrant, Bass Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Pryce, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Everton Nelson, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Humphries, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Laurence, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Watkins, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Claire Orsler, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Sally Herbert, Conductor, Co-Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Sophie Harris, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Owen Slade, Tuba, AssociatedPerformer - Andy Wood, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Kutch, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Emlyn Singleton, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Pigott-Smith, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Bruce White, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Calina de la Mare, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Warren Zielinski, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Nick Barr, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Jackie Shave, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Lucy Shaw, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Robson, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Clare Finnimore, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Laura Melhuish, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Lucy Wilkins, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Reiad Chibah, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Simon Rayner, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Emil Chakalov, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - John Barrett, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Kurt Uenala, Vocal Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Oli Langford, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Natalia Bonner, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Vicky Matthews, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Tabron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tanguy Destable, Producer, Recording Engineer, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Tony Woollard, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Woodkid, Composer, Author, Producer, Co-Arranger, Vocals, Recording Engineer, Recording Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Benjamin Esser, Author - Ryan Lott, Composer, Author, Producer, Piano, Recording Engineer, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Pip Eastop, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Rafiq Bhatia, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Brandon Peralta, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jenny Nendick, Orchestra Contractor, AssociatedPerformer - Cameron Masters, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

An Island Records recording; ℗ 2020 Green United Music, under exclusive license to Universal Music GmbH

3
Pale Yellow
00:04:10

Steve Morris, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Louisa Fuller, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Christopher Parker, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Richard George, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Worsey, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Burdge, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Pryce, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Everton Nelson, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Humphries, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Laurence, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Claire Orsler, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Sally Herbert, Conductor, Co-Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Sophie Harris, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Emlyn Singleton, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Pigott-Smith, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Bruce White, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Calina de la Mare, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Warren Zielinski, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Nick Barr, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Jackie Shave, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Lucy Shaw, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Robson, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Clare Finnimore, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Laura Melhuish, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Lucy Wilkins, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Reiad Chibah, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Emil Chakalov, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - John Barrett, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Oli Langford, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Natalia Bonner, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Vicky Matthews, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Tabron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tanguy Destable, Producer, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Tony Woollard, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Woodkid, Composer, Author, Producer, Co-Arranger, Piano, Vocals, Recording Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Rafiq Bhatia, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Jenny Nendick, Orchestra Contractor, AssociatedPerformer - Cameron Masters, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Antoine “Chab” Chabert, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

An Island Records recording; ℗ 2020 Green United Music, under exclusive license to Universal Music GmbH

4
Enemy
00:04:04

Steve Morris, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Louisa Fuller, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Christopher Parker, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Richard George, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Eliza Marshall, Bass Flute, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Worsey, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Burdge, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Ed Tarrant, Bass Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Pryce, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Everton Nelson, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Humphries, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Laurence, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Watkins, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Claire Orsler, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Sally Herbert, Conductor, Co-Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Sophie Harris, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Andy Wood, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Emlyn Singleton, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Pigott-Smith, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Bruce White, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Calina de la Mare, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Warren Zielinski, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Nick Barr, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Jackie Shave, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Anthony Pike, Bass Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Gavin McNaughton, Bassoon, AssociatedPerformer - Lucy Shaw, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Robson, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Clare Finnimore, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Laura Melhuish, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Anna Noakes, Bass Flute, AssociatedPerformer - Lucy Wilkins, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Reiad Chibah, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Simon Rayner, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Emil Chakalov, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - John Barrett, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Kurt Uenala, Vocal Engineer, StudioPersonnel - David Fuest, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Oli Langford, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Natalia Bonner, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Vicky Matthews, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Tabron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tanguy Destable, Producer, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Frederic Vectol, Vocal Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Tony Woollard, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Paul Prier, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Woodkid, Composer, Author, Producer, Co-Arranger, Recording Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Allyson Ezell, Author - Benjamin Esser, Composer, Author - Ryan Lott, Composer, Producer, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Pip Eastop, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Rafiq Bhatia, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Simms, Contra Bassoon, AssociatedPerformer - Brandon Peralta, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jenny Nendick, Orchestra Contractor, AssociatedPerformer - Cameron Masters, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Antoine “Chab” Chabert, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

An Island Records recording; ℗ 2020 Green United Music, under exclusive license to Universal Music GmbH

5
Highway 27
00:03:55

Steve Morris, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Louisa Fuller, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Christopher Parker, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Richard George, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Eliza Marshall, Bass Flute, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Worsey, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Burdge, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Pryce, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Everton Nelson, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Humphries, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Laurence, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Claire Orsler, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Sally Herbert, Conductor, Co-Arranger, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Sophie Harris, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Emlyn Singleton, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Pigott-Smith, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Bruce White, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Calina de la Mare, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Warren Zielinski, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Nick Barr, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Jackie Shave, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Anthony Pike, Bass Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Gavin McNaughton, Bassoon, AssociatedPerformer - Lucy Shaw, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Robson, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Clare Finnimore, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Laura Melhuish, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Anna Noakes, Bass Flute, AssociatedPerformer - Lucy Wilkins, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Reiad Chibah, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Emil Chakalov, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - John Barrett, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Kurt Uenala, Vocal Engineer, StudioPersonnel - David Fuest, Clarinet, AssociatedPerformer - Oli Langford, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Natalia Bonner, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Vicky Matthews, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Tabron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tanguy Destable, Producer, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Frederic Vectol, Vocal Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Tony Woollard, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Woodkid, Composer, Author, Producer, Co-Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Allyson Ezell, Author - Ryan Lott, Composer, Producer, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Rafiq Bhatia, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Simms, Contra Bassoon, AssociatedPerformer - Jenny Nendick, Orchestra Contractor, AssociatedPerformer - Cameron Masters, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Antoine “Chab” Chabert, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

An Island Records recording; ℗ 2020 Green United Music, under exclusive license to Universal Music GmbH

6
Reactor
00:05:39

Christopher Parker, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Sally Herbert, Co-Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Rob Moose, Violin, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - John Barrett, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jun Suzuki, Production Coordinator, StudioPersonnel - Chris Tabron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tanguy Destable, Producer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Suginami Junior Chorus, Choir - Frederic Vectol, Vocal Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Woodkid, Composer, Author, Producer, Co-Arranger, Piano, Vocals, Recording Engineer, Recording Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Ryan Lott, Composer, Producer, Recording Engineer, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Brandon Peralta, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jenny Nendick, Orchestra Contractor, AssociatedPerformer - Cameron Masters, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Yoshinori Adachi, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Antoine “Chab” Chabert, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Asako Tsushima, Conductor, Chorus Master, AssociatedPerformer

An Island Records recording; ℗ 2020 Green United Music, under exclusive license to Universal Music GmbH

7
Drawn To You
00:04:10

Steve Morris, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Louisa Fuller, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Christopher Parker, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Richard George, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Worsey, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Burdge, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Pryce, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Everton Nelson, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Humphries, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Laurence, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Watkins, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Claire Orsler, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Sally Herbert, Conductor, Co-Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Sophie Harris, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Andy Wood, Tenor, AssociatedPerformer - Emlyn Singleton, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Tom Pigott-Smith, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Bruce White, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Calina de la Mare, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Warren Zielinski, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Nick Barr, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Jackie Shave, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Lucy Shaw, Double Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Robson, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Clare Finnimore, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Laura Melhuish, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Lucy Wilkins, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Reiad Chibah, Viola, AssociatedPerformer - Simon Rayner, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Emil Chakalov, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - John Barrett, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Kurt Uenala, Vocal Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Oli Langford, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Natalia Bonner, Violin, AssociatedPerformer - Vicky Matthews, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Tabron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tanguy Destable, Producer, Arranger, Recording Arranger, Work Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Tony Woollard, Cello, AssociatedPerformer - Woodkid, Composer, Author, Producer, Co-Arranger, Piano, Vocals, Recording Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Benjamin Esser, Author - Pip Eastop, French Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Rafiq Bhatia, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Brandon Peralta, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jenny Nendick, Orchestra Contractor, AssociatedPerformer - Cameron Masters, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Antoine “Chab” Chabert, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

An Island Records recording; ℗ 2020 Green United Music, under exclusive license to Universal Music GmbH

8
Shift
00:03:50

Chris Tabron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tanguy Destable, Producer - Caroline Shaw, Composer - Woodkid, Composer, Author, Producer, Arranger, Piano, Work Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Brandon Peralta, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Antoine “Chab” Chabert, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

An Island Records recording; ℗ 2020 Green United Music, under exclusive license to Universal Music GmbH

9
So Handsome Hello
00:03:47

Chris Tabron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tanguy Destable, Producer, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Frederic Vectol, Vocal Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Woodkid, Composer, Author, Producer, Co-Arranger, Vocal Engineer, Recording Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Allyson Ezell, Author - Brandon Peralta, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Antoine “Chab” Chabert, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

An Island Records recording; ℗ 2020 Green United Music, under exclusive license to Universal Music GmbH

10
Horizons Into Battlegrounds
00:03:41

Chris Tabron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tanguy Destable, Producer, Vocal Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Frederic Vectol, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Paul Prier, Piano, Vocal Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Woodkid, Composer, Author, Producer, Vocal Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Allyson Ezell, Author - Brandon Peralta, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Tanguy Detable, Arranger, Work Arranger - Antoine “Chab” Chabert, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

An Island Records recording; ℗ 2020 Green United Music, under exclusive license to Universal Music GmbH

11
Minus Sixty One
00:05:16

Christopher Parker, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Sally Herbert, Co-Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - John Barrett, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jun Suzuki, Production Coordinator, StudioPersonnel - Chris Tabron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tanguy Destable, Producer, Arranger, Recording Engineer, Recording Arranger, Work Arranger, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Suginami Junior Chorus, Choir - Frederic Vectol, Vocal Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Woodkid, Composer, Author, Producer, Co-Arranger, Vocals, Recording Engineer, Recording Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Phazz, Producer, Additional Producer - Brandon Peralta, Mix Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jenny Nendick, Orchestra Contractor, AssociatedPerformer - Cameron Masters, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Yoshinori Adachi, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Antoine “Chab” Chabert, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Asako Tsushima, Conductor, Chorus Master, AssociatedPerformer

An Island Records recording; ℗ 2020 Green United Music, under exclusive license to Universal Music GmbH

Album Description

Though nearly a decade separates Woodkid's The Golden Age and S16, it's almost impossible to tell at first. Arriving seven years after his 2013 debut album, Yoann Lemoine's second full-length is very much of a piece with his previous work; his songs still have so much musical and emotional richness that they feel like miniature symphonies. S16's opening track, "Goliath," is pure Woodkid: its bone-rattling beats and heroic strings evoke the giant's menace and David's bravery as well as Lemoine's own epic battle between toughness and vulnerability. He explored similar territory on The Golden Age's tale of a boy who turns himself into marble, and while S16 is less overtly conceptual than that album, it often feels more cohesive as Woodkid examines the crisis points of his relationships with others and himself. On "Drawn to You," the first hints of attraction are just as wrenching as a breakup; on "Highway 27," Lemoine sets the sinking realization that love is gone to stark, choppy percussion that makes for some of the album's most audacious sound design. "Reactor" is just as impressive, combining a children's choir, piano, and strings in a theatrical sweep that echoes Woodkid's score for the dance piece Les Bosquets. His songwriting on S16 is equally compelling in its clear-eyed insights into the spiritual and sensual dimensions of yearning and loss. Lemoine captures the ache of being loved by someone without being fully understood by them in the elegantly simple lyrics from "In Your Likeness": "I know I'm not made in your likeness/You're not made for my darkness." On "Pale Yellow," he sings, "My love for you will be gone/I will fix the pain on my own" like a wish instead of a certainty, and if his vocals are slightly more controlled here than they were in the Golden Age days, that only makes them more empathetic. Just when it feels like the album might be too dour, Lemoine turns up the heat with "So Handsome Hello," a seductive, commanding standout that delivers a seismic shift in mood. Moments like these make S16 worth the long wait for fans, and show that the scope and humanity of Woodkid's music has only grown with time.
© Heather Phares /TiVo

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By Woodkid
S16 Woodkid
The Golden Age Woodkid
Goliath Woodkid
Run Boy Run Woodkid
Ellis Woodkid
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