The spirit of Jacques Brel is all over this first album from Chilean-born Jose Promis. Brel was a Belgian singer/songwriter whose ability to tread the line between the theatrical and the tragedies of life made him a firm favourite with the likes of Scott Walker and Marc Almond. Promis is the latest to be inspired by him and although his songs edge towards the high camp, his music is usually dignified enough not to scare away casual listeners. The likes of 'Nostalgia' and 'Barfly' sound haunting on the surface but arrive laced with a knowing wit. It has to be said that some of the material is too similar-sounding but Promis plays on this idea to throw up a few surprises; switching from the vaudeville to the night club on the danceable 'It's A Fire' whilst 'Leave It At That' is a delightful piano ballad that suggests a really serious artist at his peak. Further highlights include the breathless emotional rush of 'When Lovers Get Bored' and the echo-laden 'Wind Up A Song'. Promis is probably the kind of performer that has to been seen live to be fully appreciated but - judging from this effort - his recorded output isn't too shabby either.