Antoine - Je reprends la route demain cover
Image via Discogs
Antoine - Juste quelques flocons qui tombent (1967)

I love a good depressing seasonal tune, and it doesn't much bleaker than one set in a desolate, post-apocalyptic world!

'Juste quelques flocons qui tombent' ("Just a few flakes falling") isn't really a Christmas song, but is apparently associated enough with this time of year to be included on Christmas compilations. This is curious, because the lyrics don't reference anything related to Noël, and from what I can find, the track seems to have been released not around Christmas time but in February, 1967. Perhaps the association comes from its snowy imagery, or the chiming bells that unusually punctuate its psych-folk-pop sound, or perhaps it's because of the story of how Antoine came to write the song.

The idea for the song came to Antoine on Christmas Eve, 1965, according to Anthologie des tubes rock: Soixante ans de musique pour les kids (François Grimpet & Daniel Lesueur, Camion Blanc, 2016), This was shortly before he would score a huge hit with 'Les Élucubrations d'Antoine' early the following year, becoming not only an overnight pop superstar, but a major force in reshaping the French pop scene in the post-yé-yé years. At this point however, he had a debut EP under his belt that hadn't made much of a splash, and was still a struggling musician. Having performed that evening for a modest fee, Antoine had just enough to dine out with his girlfriend but nothing left over for transport, so they footed it home. Walking toward the Marais district, the couple looked back to see a snow-covered Paris, nothing visible except their footprints in the snow, leaving them with the feeling of being the only two people in the world. With his songwriter's imagination and having keenly absorbed the pacifist themes of the likes of Bob Dylan, Antoine soon turned this image into a song about a world decimated by nuclear war, where he and his lover are the only survivors.  

If I'm understanding the lyrics correctly, the final verse sees Antoine comparing himself and his girlfriend to Adam and Eve, but cautioning they must avoid repopulating the world – since the last world was such a flop! What a sentiment to hear in a track that gets billed as one of "Les plus belles chansons de Noël"!

Comments (0)

Add Comment

* = Required field. Email address will not be displayed and is never shared.
BBCode format allowed.

Comments are subject to moderation before being displayed.