Théo Lefebvre is a 20-year-old singer/songwriter/producer from France who exudes Damon Albarn vibes on “The Gingerbread Man”, a stellar track he released as a Christmas treat a few months back. The weather is warming and it’s spring time, but “The Gingerbread Man” still sounds great nonetheless. Several components of the instrumental arsenal – such as the swanky handclap percussion and spritzy brass synths – usually work best with hip-hop, but Lefebvre throws up for a loop by incorporating infectious pop sentiments, similar to Albarn’s forays with Gorillaz. It helps that Lefebvre’s delivery resembles Albarn’s understated yet solemnly melodic vocals, too. This tale, of a sad gingerbread man who lost his wife, will probably touch you in some bizarrely effective way, as it did to me.
Lefebvre explores a more guitar-oriented direction on “Cheats”, where slick guitar lines weave in and out over flashy synth bursts. It’s a different sound than “The Gingerbread Man”, but succeeds just as well. In this instance, I get more Psychedelic Furs than Damon Albarn. Another solid track, “Magic”, meets somewhere in the stylistic middle — with warbly synths and crisp guitar accompaniments both providing breaths of fresh air alongside tropical marimbas. Lefebvre is clearly able to interweave guitar-laden infectiousness with electronic atmospheres to concoct a memorable sound. I look forward to hearing more from his You Are Number Six and Lights of the Coast projects, for sure.