Friday, December 13, 2019

Friday's Playlist: New Jazz


"Jazz isn't dead, it just smells funny"
Frank Zappa

Jazz has been declared dead every year since hard bop. Jazz Nazis refuse to acknowledge its evolutions and mutations. This American tradition has used European classical music, Rock, Funk, Latin, Electronica to rejuvenate, adapt, survive and today, the idiom is richer than ever.

Monday, December 9, 2019

Rhiannon Giddens & Francesco Turrisi @ Café de la Danse, Paris - December 9th, 2019


Rhiannon Giddens is probably the best ambassador of American roots music today. Through her various projects and the multitude of instruments she masters, including her spellbinding voice, she tells the stories of the people and the myths that have informed America, wherever they may be from.


Friday, December 6, 2019

Delain @ Cabaret Sauvage, Paris - December 6th, 2019


The Netherlands are one of the world's foremost purveyors of the musical style that has come to be known as Symphonic Metal: epic, heavy riffs, soaring (usually female) vocals, and bombastic arrangements that evoke the string and brass sections of an orchestra. Check out our playlist HERE if you want to hear what that sounds like. 

In the decade-plus since their creation, Delain has become one of the front bearers of a genre that include such acts as Within Temptation, Nigthwish and The Gathering.


Greatest Hits Live (2011-2019)

We've just updated this page with some of our most recent favorite shots. There's quite a few legends in here... Click on the captions to check out the full galleries.



Friday's Playlist - Awesome Guitar Solos (part one)



This Friday's Playlist is the first of several instalments. Most of the solos featured here are classics. Some might call them overplayed. Don't listen to them. You don't need these people in your lives. The next instalments will feature more obscure ones but in the mean time, feel free to rock out to these fist pumping, head-banging, face-melting, air guitar-wielding solos.


Thursday, December 5, 2019

Butt Rock is back, baby!


"The Stadium Tour" was just announced a few days ago after weeks of speculation thanks to new Black Crowes' manager (I use the term "Black Crowes" loosely...) Mark Didia, who spilled the beans on the Live Nation venture a little too early.

Joan Jett & the Black Hearts, Poison, Def Leppard and Mötley Crüe. Here we are. Hairspray, mascara, bandanas, ugly pink guitars and sophomoric songs about strippers and cocaine are bankable again.




Tuesday, December 3, 2019

ENOUGH WITH THE BACKING TAPES ALREADY!


This trend is getting out of hand. Sure, it's nothing new. But it's getting worse. It used to be that bands used tapes, DATs, samples, triggers, etc. to help replicate the sound effects on their records. That's perfectly acceptable. Some use it to flesh out their sound. Add some soundscapes here, a little infra bass there... no harm done.



Sunday, December 1, 2019

Eluveitie @ Élysée-Montmartre, Paris - December 1st, 2019


Headlining this diverse Metal package, with support from Infected Rain and Lacuna Coil, is Swiss Celctic/Folk/Pagan Metal outfit Eluveitie, touring in support of their latest record the epic Ategnatos.



Lacuna Coil @ Élysée-Montmartre, Paris - December 1st, 2019


A very interesting line-up, with three very different Metal bands, each prominently featuring a female vocalist. First was Infected Rain, a Metalcore band from Moldavia. We were a little late, therefore didn't get to take any pictures but still were able to see the whole set.


Friday, November 29, 2019

Friday's Playlist: Let's Jam!



The title of this Friday's Playlist is pretty self-explanatory. These aren't songs, really. Those are some hot jams. Long, exploratory noodling guitar solos. Maybe even bass solos. I know this is the stuff of nightmares for a lot of people. What's wrong with them?


Sunday, November 24, 2019

D-A-D- @ Petit Bain, Paris - November 24th, 2019


Danish rock n'roll lifers D-A-D are back with A Prayer for the Loud, their first new record in almost a decade, and it's a banger.



The album is full of their usual brand of killer boogie rock, but that's not even the best news. The best news is that they're touring to promote this new rock and roll statement and I was lucky enough to catch them last night at Le Petit Bain, a cool Parisian venue located on a barge on the river Seine.

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Suprême NTM @ Accorhotels Arena, Paris - 23 novembre 2019


Une fois n'est pas coutume, cette chronique est rédigée en français. Parce que Suprême NTM (que, dans un souci de concision nous abrévierons en NTM pour le reste de cet article) est un produit de son environnement et de son époque. Ce qui veut dire que si vous n'avez pas connu la France du début des années quatre-vingt-dix, il y a peu de chances que vous soyiez ému à l'idée que NTM ait donné hier soir son dernier concert. Si, si. Juré, promis, glavioté! On ne les y reprendra plus.


Friday, November 22, 2019

Friday's Playlist: Last Week's Originals (part two)



This is the companion to last Friday's Playlist: these are the original versions of the songs we featured last week.


Friday, November 15, 2019

Devin Townsend @ Salle Pleyel, Paris - November 15th, 2019



After dissolving his Devin Townsend Project a couple of years ago, Devin Townsend wasted no time in recording and releasing one of the more bonkers records in his catalogue, which is both an accomplishment and a compliment. Empath is a sensory overload from beginning to end, a dizzying flux of ideas and sounds that can leave the listener a little overwhelmed. The big question was, how would this transfer to the stage?

Friday's Playlist: Awesome Covers (part two)



This is another playlist comprised entirely of covers. We did that a few weeks ago and it was a big hit, so we're doing it again. Also it buys us time while we think of new themes for future playlists. 


Friday, November 8, 2019

Friday's Playlist: Woke Songs



Here's a soundtrack for your non-violent protest against racial or sexual discrimination, global warming, what have you.


Thursday, October 31, 2019

Friday Thursday's Playlist: Happy Halloween!



Yeah, I know. Today is Thursday. We usually publish our playlists on Friday. That's why they're called Friday's Playlists. I apologise for the inconsistency. But... Today is Halloween. And we figured there needed to be a playlist. So here it is.




Saturday, October 26, 2019

The Wildhearts @ O' Sullivans Backstage By The Mill, Paris - October 26th, 2019


If the internet is to be believed, Rock and Roll is dead. I keep reading that there are no more killer Rock and Roll bands. The funny thing is, also according to the internet, the internet itself is to blame for that dire situation. Of course, we know better. Take, for example, the Wildhearts.


Friday, October 25, 2019

Friday's Playlist - Robert Fripp: Sessions & Contribution


This week we've decided to examine Robert Fripp's sessions and contributions (as a guitarist or producer) to other people's records, for no reason other than he's one of our fave(u)rite musicians and we felt like it. Does there have to be a reason for everything? Sometimes things just are.


Monday, October 21, 2019

Raphael Saadiq @ Élysée-Montmartre, Paris - October 21st, 2019


Raphael Saadiq is back in Paris, touring behind his first record in almost a decade, the deeply personal Jimmy Lee, an album of dark, modern soul infused by tragedy. Thankfully the mood of the concert was a lot lighter, even when he evoked the memories of his dead brother who gave his name to the album.


Friday, October 18, 2019

Friday's Playlist: Happy Chuck Berry Day!



On what would have been Chuck Berry's 93rd birthday, we pay tribute to one of the pioneers of Rock and Roll with a playlist of some of his most famous songs as performed by some other great artists.




Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Durand Jones & the Indications @ le Trabendo, Paris - October 15th, 2019



The past year has seen the release of a number of great traditional Soul Music records, chief among which was Durand Jones & the Indications' sophomore LP American Love Call (check out our review HERE). Their traditional approach to the genre lends itself particularly well to the stage: like on their records, there are no tricks or gimmicks to their performances. Just great tunes performed with passion and craft.



Friday, October 11, 2019

Friday's Playlist - R.I.P. Ginger Baker

This week we got the news that Ginger Baker passed away so we concocted a long playlist celebrating his many accomplishments. Blues, Jazz, Psychedelic, proto-Metal, Afro-Beat, Funk, Post-Punk... Ginger Baker could play it all.


Friday, October 4, 2019

Friday's Playlist: Fictional Bands


This Friday's Playlist features songs that mention bands or artists that don't actually exist. Johnny B. Goode, Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, Sultans of Swing, the Spiders from Mars...



Friday, September 27, 2019

Friday's Playlist: Last Week's Originals


I received a couple of emails after last week's playlist essentially asking about where the songs came from. So here's the companion playlist to last week's covers: the originals. The songs are sequenced in the same exact order, so the flow might not be as good as last week's (believe it or not, these playlists are usually pretty thought out) because what worked with last week's version do not necessarily work with these. Oh, well. It's a collection of great songs and any opportunity to listen to Cosmic Slop or Bastards of Young shouldn't be passed upon! Enjoy, comment, share!



Sunday, September 22, 2019

Wilco @ le Trianon, Paris - September 22nd, 2019




Wilco's concert at the Trianon was an intimate experience despite the fact that it took place before 1500 people, many of them American expats. Jeff Tweedy was his usual endearing self, still displaying the demeanour of a shy teenager despite his gray hair. 

Friday, September 20, 2019

Alice Cooper @ la Seine Musicale, Boulogne-BIllancourt - September 20th, 2019


Last time I saw Alice Cooper was just a little over a year ago in Los Angeles. It was my fourth show on the Paranormal tour after the London date in the fall of 2017 and the two Paris gigs at the end of that year (here and here). The shows were great but it was time for an overhaul. Of course, there are some staples that he can't do away with: songs like School's Out or I'm Eighteen and theatrics like the execution at the end of the second act of the show. But there is still a lot of room for change and creativity within those constraints and fans will be delighted to know that the new act is every bit as good as the previous one.


Black Stone Cherry @ la Seine Musicale, Boulogne-Billancourt - September 20th, 2019


I last saw Black Stone Cherry ten years ago when they were opening for Heaven & Hell. Back then their set had failed to impress me and the rest of the crowd, especially since they made the puzzling decision to feature not one but two guitar solos during their short 40-minute set. I'm glad to say they didn't make that mistake this time around, and they seemed much more professional.

Friday's Playlist: Awesome Covers (part one)



This long playlist gathers some of the covers I love. Are they better than the originals? Usually not, but they're awesome in their own rights. 



Friday, September 13, 2019

Friday's Playlist: Back to School



OK, so school has been back for several weeks now. I'm still on vacation mode, however. It'll probably feel that way for a while. Reality will hit me eventually, but I'm in no hurry. This Back to School playlist is dedicated to all the truants, drop-outs and juvenile delinquents. You know who you are. Enjoy, share, comment.

Friday, September 6, 2019

Friday's Playlist: New Wave Of British Heavy Metal


In last week's Playlist we featured Britpop, so this week we figured we'd stay in Albion but go back a little further in time. Needless to say, this Friday's Playlist needs to be played LOUD.

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Duff McKagan @ Trabendo, Paris - September 2nd, 2019


Duff McKagan's new record Tenderness, his first foray into Americana and country-tinged roots rock, is one of this year's best releases and that's why the Trabendo is sold out. It's quite a privilege to see such a big star in such an intimate setting: ever since the core trio of Guns N'Roses reunited over three years ago, he has mostly been playing enormodomes. But this isn't stadium rock: this is something much more delicate, and much more emotive.


Shooter Jennings @ Trabendo, Paris - September 3rd, 2019


Shooter Jennings is pulling double duty tonight: the country star and his band are backing Duff McKagan on his Tenderness tour as well as opening the show.


Friday, August 30, 2019

Friday's Playlist: Parkas & Bowl Cuts - 80's & 90's Britpop



As promised, this Friday's Playlist is a little more palatable than last week's. In fact, a lot of those songs have great sing-along choruses, catchy melodies and great hooks.

Britpop is arguably the last movement that produced a true blockbuster rock band: Oasis might have fizzled out fast, but their first two records still hold up to this day.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Patti Smith @ Olympia, Paris - August 27th, 2019

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Although I've had several opportunities over the years, I''d never seen Patti Smith in concert until last night. I've enjoyed some of her albums, but was only a passing fan. For some reason I thought her concert performances might be austere. I expected a reverent, serious, overly literate event... boy, was I wrong. Sure, she tackled some topical issues such as the Amazonian forest fires. And yes, there was poetry. But the main vibe of the show was FUN.



Friday, August 23, 2019

Friday's Playlist: Post Rock, Noise Rock, Drone and Experimental


We like a good traditional song as much as the next person, but this playlist isn't about that. Not even remotely. Hell, some of it isn't even considered music by most people. Surely, Lou Reed's Metal Machine Music was him just taking the piss. Right? And Nurse with Wound... What the fuck is that, even?

Monday, August 19, 2019

10 Questions with Mark Kendall of Great White

Great White are still going strong thirty-five years after their debut. They have defied time, trends, addictions, lawsuits, catastrophes and lead singer issues but they are still out there putting out records and playing gigs all over the world.

Their guitarist Mark Kendall was kind enough to take some time off of his busy schedule to answer some questions about the band's past, present and future. Enjoy, share and comment!




Friday, August 16, 2019

Friday's Playlist: New York, NY


I'm in New York City today, and I absolutely love this city. Everything about it is exhilarating. The people, the culture, the tension, the weather. It's always vibrant and exciting and cool and fun. So in honor of this great city I've compiled a little selection of songs celebrating it.



Thursday, August 15, 2019

Play It Loud @ Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY - U.S.A.


Play It Loud is a wonderful exhibition currently showing at the Met in New York City. The venerable museum, home to some of the world's most fantastic artwork, is showcasing some of Rock and Roll's most iconic instruments.

Friday, August 9, 2019

Friday's Playlist: Children of the Stones


Today we compiled a few songs that are obviously indebted to the World's Greatest Rock and Roll Band (™). Not rip-offs necessarily, but songs that have almost every element of what has become the classic Rolling Stones sound.

Friday, August 2, 2019

Friday's Playlist: Best of 2019



We've been slacking off lately on the Album Reviews front... There's been a lot of great music we haven't had time to review and a lot that we haven't even had time to listen to. What can I say? Life gets in the way.