Meet Benedict Sinister. A poet, singer-songwriter, music producer, and video artist. An Australian raised in Paris, who produces “music for sapiosexuals” (a person who finds intelligence sexually attractive or arousing) – combining wit, wordplay and cultural references with a love of provocation, in the tradition of his idols Lorenz Hart, Serge Gainsbourg and Prince. His spoken word vocals have been likened to Leonard Cohen and Tom Waits.
Benedict Sinister is a man who has dedicated his life to romance, culture (high, low and often French), world travel and all things super sexy and cool. His Instagram account contains a virtual catalogue of edgy artists pushing the boundaries of the mainstream (Akua Naru, Klara Kristin, Yolandi Visser, Chloe Sevigny, Natasha Law…) as well as history’s great lovers.
Like a figure from a bygone era himself, Sinister has said, “A love affair with an extraordinary woman is in itself a greater work of art than the songs that it inspires.”
He does, however, express his passions through music, and eroticism is his subject of choice for the most part. In truth, many of us still subscribe and always will to the passionate and lustful temptations in life. Are we wrong? Are we bad? Are we sinister? Perhaps. But when the music’s this good, maybe it’s not such a crime.
‘Ne Dramatise Pas (16 Lines from Bryan Ferry)’ nods musically to the Roxy Music frontman’s hits of the 80s, and attempts to outdo Ferry in the romantic fatalism stakes. In homage to the Roxy man’s under-appreciated talents as a lyricist, it quotes lines from 16 of their songs arranged in rhyming verses.
The French title is an ultra-obscure Ferry citation (for Roxy anoraks), and signals Benedict Sinister’s desire to, as he puts it, “contribute to the bilingual music cannon.”
Other French references include name-checking Romantic poet Charles Baudelaire, designer Karl Lagerfeld, and citing French music artists Serge Gainsbourg, Les Rita Mitsouko and Plastique Bertrand. LA-based artist and DJ Miss Beltran takes the track into the house-lounge genre.