Jeff Touzeau
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Jeff Touzeau


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"Going to Cape May: review"

The album Going to Cape May begins in a very comfortable place. It opens with a title track that is essentially the grown man’s answer to the feeling we’ve all had as children sitting in the back seat, head out the window yelling “We’re here!” That feeling never goes away, it only becomes spoken in softer, more articulate tones.

A given piece of music consists equally of the work itself and what we as listeners bring to it. Here, it’s certain that most of us will relate to Touzeau's specific details "…as the road comes to an end, I see the flashing lights again."

Although the album was recorded at his home studio in New York and done over a brief period of time, in reality the recording session began in Jeff’s mind on the Cape May beaches as early as his boyhood. He explains, “The imagination is freer in Cape May and what you feel and think there…you take it with you for years”

So whether absorbing beauty in the hushed, natural sounds of Cape May Point or the man made equivalent via Pink Floyd or The Beach Boys, Jeff began collecting his artistic material long ago. With Going to Cape May, he’s added haunting acoustic accompaniment and given his Cape May-bred introspection a home.

Jeff initially attempted to record the album in the Cape May Lighthouse. However, due to issues with acoustics, the tracks were rendered unusable in a physical sense. The lighthouse gave him what he needed just the same. From it, the album’s tone was set and he later recaptured the unique ambience of the old beacon in his own studio.

Once the album gets us beyond the flashing lights and bridges, it makes a fine-spun transition and takes us to a place where the lights have been dimmed just a touch. The guitars and vocals take our hand whether we are aware or not. Ghosts start to take form and show themselves as the album progresses. They are the lingering spirits of childhood memories, the eerie contrast of our aging process against the ocean’s timeless indifference.

"Down on the Ocean’s Ground" is a chillingly specific testament to the might of its subject. Jeff writes of the oft-forgotten South Cape May, which was swallowed and now rests eternally fragmented on the ocean’s floor. It’s a song that had its genesis in an isolated experience of walking along the beach after a nor’easter years ago. Bits of Victorian life, long gone, briefly resurfaced in the sand. The memory never faded in Jeff Touzeau's mind and its recollection helps bring the album to a spectral close.

The particular trip to Cape May this CD offers might not be the one we take every weekend or even every summer. It’s not the getaway where we stumble out of Cabanas or collect enough Arcade tickets to buy a key-chain. It’s the trip to Cape May we took as kids and lies buried in our minds' deep recesses. It’s more like the December weekend where the sounds of nature have no competition.

No doubt, we’ll all have fun on vacation in Cape May this summer. But take thirty-some minutes and visit Jeff Touzeau’s Cape May first. His is a town that’s there for each of us, a place we might somehow have forgotten. -

""I Saw You" Review"

Newton’s Third Law of Motion states, “For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction”. So for every act of mega-corporate conglomeration that in the end rules over major music media outlets with an iron fist and makes payola look like a street-level “three-card monte” scam, there is an equal and opposite reaction of musicians who have taken matters into their own hands. These musicians range from basement studio noodlers to bands on independent labels slogging it out the old-fashioned way.

Hummingbird Sound is a studio/label for the self-made musician, providing state of the art equipment for DIY-ers in the New York area. It’s also the home of musician Jeffrey Touzeau. As the digital age has progressed, it’s become a fairly common thing to hear albums that are one-person shows, but it’s still impressive to see every aspect of an album’s creation, from songwriting to performing, to production and engineering, and all the way up to distribution handled by a single artist. It’s even more impressive when that artist manages to produce a genuinely worthwhile product. The greatest detriment to an individual controlling a whole project is that no one is there to counterbalance opinions and to help the artist gain perspective on issues that are too personal to be objective.

Thankfully, Touzeau seems accomplished enough not to need the help. His debut is beautiful in a way that both contemporary folk singers and current popsters find difficult to pull off without sounding cheesy. There is a clarity and honesty to this collection of songs that offers up a rare adjective for a music review: integrity. Evoking folky, acoustic masters like Paul Simon and James Taylor, but drenched in the sounds of the Beach Boys and sprinkled with quiet touches of power pop, Lilypoint’s ventures have an inescapable aura of warmth and fuzziness.

Maybe warm fuzzies aren’t your thing, but if you have any interest in pure pop, if you’ve ever thought that Brian Wilson is a genius instead of a drug addled surfer geek, then his music will astound you. From the moment I Saw You opens, the most arresting element is the pristine melody backed up by perfect harmonies. Touzeau is also savvy enough to know that three- and four-part harmonies are to be used with precision and not to excess, a lesson that the Wilsons could have used at times. All of this perfectly woven together, and all of this perfectly played and sung by that one man.

“Rotten Wood” and “Her Footsteps” tell a more typical story of broken or lost love. Touzeau’s gift lies in his ability to marry an excellent and skilled tune to simple, poetic vocals and never seem like an actor. As I said, this is music with integrity.

Whether Touzeau is celebrating childhood and his new daughter’s future, confirming his bond of love with his wife, or bemoaning a friend’s abusive relationship, he has an ear for music that many singer-songwriters should envy. Getting his start as a musician while a teenager into Joy Division, The Cure, and Syd Barrett, Jeffrey Touzeau has matured into a man with an incredibly honest and pure pop vision. - Pop Matters

"Jeff Touzeau Review"

"The sweet melodies and harmonies showcase the vocal skills of singer/songwriter Jeffrey Touzeau, whose well-controlled tenor is limber and smooth. The guitar and drums are tidy, and never raw; Touzeau is the consummate classical musician." - Splendid eZine

"Touzeau's Cape Sound"

In Jeff Touzeau's latest CD, a folky melodic journey through the themes of the sea, he invokes a love of Cape May as well as a respect for the seashore.

"Going to Cape May" is a collection of incredibly catchy songs that will have the listener humming in their sleep. Touzeau's acoustic guitar playing is solid, while bongo rhythms and the occasional slide guitar pull the listener into his lyrics about his life, love, the power of the sea, and of course, Cape May.

Touzeau, who lives in Katonah, New York, has been coming to Cape May since he was a child. The town became a home away from home for him, and after writing the title track in only a day, songs about the shore started to pour out.

He did a lot of preparation in making the album. The arrangements for his songs were made mostly inside the Cape May Lighthouse, which he used as almost a practice recording studio. The instrumentation was purposely simple so there would be more focus on the emotional content of the songs.

Many of the songs, although laced with Cape May imagery, deal with the duality of the ocean - some days the provider, some days the destroyer. This theme is best displayed in "Fishermen's Requiem" which was written a day after the Tsunami in Southeast Asia. It's about a fisherman who suddenly finds himself swept away from home by the same power that provided one for him.

The power of the sea to take away was realized during a walk in Cape May. After a northeaster he saw saw household goods wash ashore. "It made me realize how strong the ocean is", said Touzeau. He wrote the song "Down on the Ocean's Ground" about South Cape May, because of that walk.

Even when the music is more serious, it's never a far departure from teh happiness that emanates through his guitar. In "Late Night", a song structured from melodies written when Touzeau was a kid playing guitar on the beach, he reassures "let yourself fall/nothing matters at all/let yourself flow/it feels good to glow."

The conclusion is, as Touzeau says, "a giant sigh of relief." The last song, a hauntingly beautiful instrumental, is worth the price of the album alone.

Touzeau recorded his album at Hummingbird Sound in Katonah, New York.

He still visits Cape May and is interested in performing his album sometime in the future.

"I feel privileged to make an album about a subject so heartfelt to me", Touzeau admits, "especially knowing that many others share the same feeling as me."

Perhaps the best line in the album is also the best way to end this article: "While things may change, one thing remains: this is where my heart will stay, in Cape May." - Cape May Start and Wave


It's nice to hear a gentle and thoughtful album. “Find a Home for My Love” is probably the album’s strongest track. Touzeau’s vocal and guitar playing is a bit more forceful on this song than the others, and the perfectly timed stop/start really catches your attention. Plus, it’s downright catchy in the same way that a song like Vigalantes of Love’s “Double Cure” or “Struggleville” is.

All in all, this was an album I really didn’t think I’d get into, but it has captured my interest quite thoroughly. There really isn’t anyone doing this sort of thing right now. -


"Two Worlds Away" (LP): 2009
"Going to Cape May" (LP): 2005

Going to Cape May is available on iTunes and distributed by Hummingbird Sound, Inc.



Jeff Touzeau is a New York-based singer/songwriter. His songs--which range from quiet, mood-evoking acoustic ballads to relentlessly driving power-pop, invite the listener into a sonic and lyrical world all his own.

His latest album, which is produced by famed U.K-based producer Ian Catt (St. Etienne, Trembling Blue Stars, The Field Mice, Heavenly), tells an evocative story of the life of an early 20th century Scottish miner.

The strength of Touzeau's songs lie in his ability to capture a mood. This is evident on his last two albums (Two Worlds Away, 2009 and Going to Cape May, 2005). Two Worlds Away could easily work as a dramatic adaptation. The narrative of its 15 songs consists of many different "character voices"--the miner, his wife, their child and others--creating a strong literary context for an emotional pallet of sonically powerful compositions.

"Going to Cape May" was an enormous regional success--not just in Cape May, but in the trades, in retail and also on iTunes, where his album outperformed in the singer/songwriter category. "Going to Cape May" shares the same thematic approach as "Two Worlds Away"--this time painting images of the sea. In this regard, "Going to Cape May" might be akin to a literary work by Joseph Conrad in its descriptive--and again, emotional--ability to create a mood.

Touzeau and Ian Catt co-engineered "Two Worlds Away"--the drums and guitars were recorded at Touzeau's home studio in New York (both performed by Touzeau himself) and the keyboards and bass were recorded in the U.K., performed by Catt. It was a truly collaborative, web 2.0 recording project.