“L’enfer” by Stromae

Although Stromae may not be a household name in places like the United States, he has proven extremely successful in his part of the world, especially during the late-aughts/early-2010s. So it was quite surprising that he hadn’t released a studio album in almost a decade prior to 2022’s Multitude

You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for Stromae's L’enfer at Lyrics.org.

Well this song (“L’enfer”) is reportedly based on why he went on such a hiatus. According to him, the hiatus came about as a result of mental health issues he was dealing with.

And what Stromae is speaking to initially is loneliness. He commences the song by fully acknowledging that he’s the only person afflicted with this malady. Apparently, he is embracing that fact in an attempt not to be so down on himself. The vocalist understands that in reality, loneliness is quite common. But at the end of the day said strategy doesn’t work, and he ends up feeling as lonely as in the first.

A Very Depressed Narrator

The chorus indicates that the narrator is dealing with something a lot more serious, a sensation that also permeates throughout this piece, which is an associated harrowing sense of depression. 

In fact it is so pronounced that the vocalist has even “considered suicide a few times”. And more specifically, what he is stricken with is a case of what an American singer may refer to as being chastised by inner demons. This therefore brings us to the title of track (“L’enfer”). “L’enfer” actually translates to “Hell”.

But the second verse reveals instead of letting such thoughts dominate his mental, the vocalist rather resolves to battle it. He decides to stop feeling sorry for himself and take some definitive action to overcome this malady. 

And in the third verse, Stromae clarifies that he doesn’t have all of the answers concerning whatever types of depression respective listeners may be going through. But going back to the second verse, his conclusive advice is that a conscientious effort must be made on the part of such individuals to think differently. And the implication is that he knows, from experience even, that doing so is not as easy as it may sound.

Lyrics to Stromae's "L’enfer"

Release of “L’enfer”

Being released on 9 January 2022, “L’enfer” is the first single Stromae, a hip-hop artist from Belgium, dropped during said year. The song is his second single from his 2022 album Multitude. The entire album is a product of the Universal Music Group.

The album’s first single is titled “Santé”. It came out in October of 2021.

Stromae unexpectedly debuted this song on 9 January 2022. This happened during an interview on a French TV station called TF1.

2 Responses

  1. Doc says:

    Amazing artist. And such clear beautifully sung and spoken French.

  2. Dan Kuehn says:

    Who is the “you” in the last verse? Is it a world that creates depressing things like “Guilt Trip” or is it a specific person? I don’t expect an answer, but I do wonder. Beautiful song and perfect self-experession. I only “discovered” Stromae today, and I’ve been consuming his incredible videos for hours. Really, a man for our times. Thank you, Stromae.

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