Wildcard (week 18):
Hooverphonic – Romantic

Belgian band Hooverphonic started in 1995 as trip hop act Hoover, but they needed to change that name to avoid legal issues with the vacuum cleaner company of that name. Since then, the name of that company collected more dust than the devices that once made them famous.

Ever since the beginning, Hooverphonic has two constants: bassist/programmer Alex Callier and guitarist Raymond Geerts. Their choices for vocalists have always been outstanding, although most of them didn’t last long. After five female singers – Esther Lybeert (1995-1996), Liesje Sadonius (1996-1997), Kyoko Baertsoen (1997), Geike Arnaert (1997-2008) and Noémie Wolfs (2010-2015) – they tried some male vocalists for the first time on their 2016 album In Wonderland. But now, they’re back with their success formula, presenting their sixth front woman. One that the Belgians among you may already know…

17-year-old Luka Cruysberghs won The Voice Van Vlaanderen in 2017, where she was part of team Alex Callier, who happened to be one of the show’s coaches. She even sang the band’s Mad About You during the competition.

Romantic is the first Hooverphonic song with their new leading lady. A typically melancholic, orchestral pop song with ‘James Bond’ written all over it. Cruysberghs’s voice blends beautifully with Callier and Geerts’s symphonic backdrop. It once more underlines the duo’s great talent to find the right singer, time and time again. Let’s hope this trio will last for many years.

Hooverphonic is one of my favourite bands of all time. Listen to their Best Of album to hear why. Their new single Romantic is this week’s Carte Blanche Music Wildcard, all of which you can find in the Wildcards 2018 playlist.

For more great new music follow the constantly updated Carte Blanche Music playlist.

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