À FORCE DE…


Collage curtesy of MYNA MORAMENTO RAFI

À force de … (can be loosely translated as “by means of…”) is a number 11 song from Mylène Farmer’s ninth studio album, Monkey Me released December 2012

The lyrics of the song À force de … were written by Mylène Farmer. Music, arrangements, programming, keyboards and production by Laurent Boutonnat.

À force de … was sung on all the dates of the 2013 Timeless tour from September 07 to December 06, 2013. Arrangements for the stage: Laurent Boutonnat.

And what a performance was that! An opening intro is just stunning. I only watched it on the video, and I am sure it was much more impressive in person – please, tell us if you’ve seen it live! Comment on the page. The intro was massive, it has built up the expectation and the entire atmosphere prior to Mylene appearing from the eye of the particle accelerator machine (see below for the design inspirations).

The A Force de was a first song to open the concert….A long note similar to the XXL only this time in the very beginning of the song sounds like a cry or a howl, it is primal and powerful, something very untamed about that sound…It sets the tone for the entire opening act of the concert. Just like in her other latest songs, it is about graceful integration of a high-tech and human emotions. It is about a feel of a human soul framed by the technology…very up-to day and relevant yet timeless (!!!) topic of human experiences such as love, pain, loss, longing and overall calling of the Soul. Just can’t get enough of how well Mylene does it! Bravo! Can’t wait to see what else to come in NEVERMORE 2023

n. The song’s lyrics are full of dilemmas and contradictions (it is our Mylene for sure!) It is finding the inspiration and the will to live when knowing that you are mortal, when there is nothing lasting under the moon, yet love is what make it all worth it…

The idiom “force de…”can be loosely translated as “by means of / By dint of…” has a tangible basis for a play of words Mylene uses here (she is a pro at it, isn’t she? and how much I love it!)


The setlist of the Timeless as following:

Video Sequence
À force de…
Comme j’ai mal
C’est une belle journée
Monkey Me
Slipping Away (Crier la vie)” (Virtual duet with Moby)
Elle a dit (Replaced by L’amour n’est rien… in Russia)
Oui mais… non
Dance Sequence (contains elements of “Piano Trio No. 2”)
Mad World (duet with Gary Jules)
Les mots (duet with Jules)
Je te dis tout
Et pourtant…
Désenchantée
Bleu Noir
Diabolique mon ange
Sans contrefaçon
Maman a tort
Je t’aime mélancolie
XXL (contains elements of “A-t-on jamais”)
À l’ombre

Encore:
Inséparables
Rêver


The concerts in Lyon were recorded for a concert film and live album. The live album, Timeless 2013 was released on December 9, 2013. The concert film, Timeless 2013: Le Film was screened in more than one hundred cinemas across France, Belgium and Switzerland on 27 March 2014.

Three days before the launch of the Timeless Tour, Francois Hanss confirmed on Twitter that the shows in Lyon, France will be filmed for a future concert film. Rumors began to surface about a possible release date for a live album. French record stores received pre-order forms for the album, thus confirming the release date of the album for 9 December 2013. On 30 October 2013, Polydor Records officially announced the title and track listing for Timeless 2013.


timeless 2013


À force de… was sung on all dates of the 2013 Timeless tour from September 7 to December 6, 2013 .



For this tour, Mylène will change part of the lyrics of the first verse of the song: “À l’envers / Cette terre / Il pleut sur Vienne / La vie est belle” changed to: “À l’envers / Cette terre / La vie est belle / Quand on s’aime”


SUBTITLED and TRANSLATED VIDEOS



Timeless (stylized as Timel3ss) was the sixth concert tour by French recording artist, Mylène Farmer. The tour supported the singer’s ninth studio album, Monkey Me (2012). The tour began on 7 September 2013 and ended on 3 December 2013. It played 39 shows in five countries, performing for over 500,000 people.

Influences: CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, is one of the largest and most prestigious scientific laboratories in the world. Its vocation is fundamental physics, the discovery of the constituents and laws of the Universe. uses very complex scientific instruments to probe the ultimate constituents of matter: fundamental particles by studying what happens when these particles collide, physicists understand the laws of Nature.

Founded in 1954, CERN is located on both sides of the Franco-Swiss border, near Geneva. It was one of the first organizations at European level and today has twenty-one member states. (Cern.ch)

As you are probably aware, It is a very promising research field where we learn more about the connection between physical property of the elementary particles and the energy they create. It is a challenge to the Newtonian (material 3D) understanding of the universe we are living in. The more we learn how E= MC2 (Einstein famous formula) really works the more astonishing Universal laws open up themselves to us. Bravo to Mylene for considering it an inspiration for her stage design. Bright lady she is – really bright!

Influence confirmed by Koen Peeters who works for the company WIcreations, a company responsible for certain elements of the decor.

“The panels, which form what is called a ‘tunnel’ at the start of the concert, are actually a replica of a particle accelerator, an instrument that uses electric or magnetic fields to drive electrically charged particles to high speeds. ” (Styx Special Magazine Timeless 2013 – 2014)

Another possible influence is Barbarella: a comic book heroine created in 1962 by Jean-Claude Forest.

Barbarella disrupts the world of comics and scandalizes from its publication. The spearhead of adult and genre comics, the work is censored. At the time of sexual liberation, the sensual features and the eroticism that emanates from the eponymous heroine leave no reader indifferent (bedetheque.com)

A film adapted from the comics was directed by Roger Vadim in 1968 with Jane Fonda in the lead role. https://wwwdb.com/title/tt0062711/

Some even mention Joan of Arc as a potential inspiration for the stage image

Jean Paul Gaultier confirmed certain influences form the stage production for the costume design. The superhero theme is definitely much more evolved in the 2019 concerts design where the epic characters are recognizable in Mylene’s costume as well as in her dancers. Please comment which ones did you recognize?

When mentioning ” a force of..” , although wasn’t meant directly I am sure – my first association is with the Life Force (Prana) in the Human body called Kundalini.

Kundalini is a Sanscrit term from ancient India that identifies the arising of an energy and consciousness which has been coiled at the base of the spine since birth, and is the source of the life force (pranic energy, chi, bio-energy) that everybody knows.  Yogic science suggests that this energy triggered the formation of the child in the womb, and then coils 3 ½ times at the base of the spine to hold the energy field in stasis until we die, when it uncoils and returns to its source.

Kundalini may unravel and arise from the base of the spine (or sometimes from the feet) due to spiritual practices, or in response to life events, and when this happens it may move gradually, uncoiling like a snake, or quickly and explosively, into the gut, the heart or the head.  This event can be startling and chaotic, frightening or blissful, and it usually triggers months and years of new sensations and changes in the person who awakens it.  It may feel like the body’s wiring has moved from 110 to 220, and it takes time to adapt to it.  It is understood in the eastern tradition to be a significant adjunct to spiritual realization, but it is rarely recognized as such in western traditions.

It is possible to find acknowledgement of this spiritual movement in many yogic and tantric traditions, Tantric Buddhism, Taoism, gnostic mystical tradition and some Native American teachings, and indigenous societies.  An image of a rising snake in the body signifies its existence in the esoteric art of many cultures. The capacity to intensify and raise energy in the body has been explored for thousands of years.  It is a natural human potential.

Kundalini awakening can trigger a wide range of phenomena. It can cause significant changes in the physical, emotional, sensate and psychic capacities, cause stress in vulnerable areas of the body, open the heart and mind to major shifts in perspective, and cause many unique and unfamiliar sensations including shaking, vibrating, spontaneous movement, visions, and many other phenomena.

Kundalini awakening offers a profound opportunity for those called to follow a spiritual path.  It gradually releases many patterns, conditions and delusions of the separate self.  It can be threatening to the ego-structure because a person may feel a loss of interest in their old life and identity, and consciousness may go into unfamiliar expansive or empty states that are disorienting.  It also makes people who are unfamiliar with it afraid they are ill or losing their minds. So understanding is important.

Like any energy of creation (prana, electricity, atoms) this energy can be activated and misused by those who are not spiritually motivated or have not completed this process and are therefore not free of personal patterns.  It is very helpful to understand the process and the intention of your own life force as it awakens you so that you may discover wisdom, love and authentic direction in your own life.  Simplicity, contentment, unconditional acceptance and presence are hallmarks of an awakened life.


I personally started practicing Kundalini variations for a few years now and I am not the same energy as was before…One of the outcomes of awakening the Life Energy in me is me writing this now stepping out of my cocoon and expressing myself on the whole different level. We are all united, in fact we are all ONE. Our energy is collective.. Thank you, Mylene, for reminding us about it back in 2013


Did you know Barabara has also recorded a song called “A force de”?


The dancing robots in the Timeless were inspired by The Trio in E flat Major for piano and strings No. 2, D. 929 (op. 100) is a chamber music work composed by Franz Schubert, one of his last compositions, dated November 1827.


remixes


https://soundcloud.com/search?q=a%20force%20de%20mylene%20farmer


piano cover by MF fan



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lyrics with translation


À l'envers
Cette terre
Il pleut sur Vienne
La vie est belle

À force de mourir
Je n'ai pas su te dire
Que j'ai envie de vivre
Donner l'envie de vivre

À force de courir
De perdre l'équilibre
Moi j'ai envie de vivre
Donner l'envie de vivre

La force des rapides
Des vents qui se déchirent
Me donnent l'envie de vivre
Donner l'envie de vivre

À force d'étincelles
Que la nature est belle
Moi j'ai envie de vivre
Et de mourir sans chaînes

Impalpable
Cette flamme
La vie est belle
Quand on aime
everything is upside down
on this Earth
It's raining in Vienna
life is beautiful

by inevitably dying
how can I tell you
I want to live
as long as there is a will to live

by running nonstop
just not to loose the balance
I want to live
as long as there is the will to live

by never stopping rapids of
the winds that tear us apart 
make me want to live
give me the will to live

being grateful for 
how beautiful nature is
I want to live
and die without shackles

impalpable
this flame
life is beautiful
as long as we love each other




The page last edited July 8, 2022

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