Mexico City native Gina Récamier borrows her stately stage name from Juliette Récamier, a 19th-century Parisian socialite known for her elegance, grace and literary prowess. The French noblewoman also happens to be a distant ancestor of the Mexican singer-songwriter, who pays homage to the Récamier legacy by creating refined indie pop that transports listeners back to a more ornate, romantic era.
Earlier this year, Madame Récamier followed up her first two albums, Chocolate and ImaGina, with a third effort, Mi Corazón, a collection of light songs that build on her fanciful and eclectic sound. One of the lead singles and standouts on the project is the sentimental "Jamás Pensé," a track that offsets some of the album's chipper pop sensibilities with depth and a bit of nostalgia. Sprinkles of marimba melodies braid in and out of dense guitar rhythms, evoking both old-school Latin folklore and a dark, baroque Renaissance spirit. (It's no surprise that the theatrical singer chose to don a medieval flower crown for the video.)
Madame Récamier's music generally has a sweet and lustrous finish to it — the result of syrupy vocals that recall the breathiness of Natalia Lafourcade and the ebullience of Monsieur Periné's Catalina García. In most cases, Madame Récamier's high register adds buoyancy and brightness to her work, but in "Jamás Pensé," the vocal performance enhances the song's drama and adds contrast to the rich arrangements. It's enough to make her aristocratic ancestors proud.
Mi Corazón is out now on iTunes.