Friday, December 31, 2021

Happy New Year in Black & White

Another year bites the dust. 2021 finally comes to an end. And just as things were looking up, guess who decided to mutate and unleash his Omicron variant upon the world? Fucking COVID. I guess the world will be shutting down again. Most concerts we were looking forward to are already being postponed or even outright cancelled. We did manage to squeeze in a few decent gigs in the short time when things were somewhat safe, this is what we're celebrating in this post.

Friday's Playlist: The Best of 2021

Happy New Year!

As much as I hate seeing time slip away so quickly, I must admit I'm pretty glad to see 2021 coming to an end. I'm sure I'm not alone in thinking I didn't care much for that year. Don't get me wrong, it was no 2020. Don't get me started on that one. But if I had been in a coma for most of 2021 it would have been no big loss for me. Still, there were a few things that didn't totally suck about the year that's about to end. Some of that was the music.

Friday, December 24, 2021

Friday's Playlist: Thank You For Talkin’ To Me Africa

Something a little different this Friday. If the title of this Playlist is lifted off a song by Sly & the Family Stone, the ressemblance ends here. Well, not completely: this Playlist gets plenty funky, too. Especially towards the end.

Friday, December 17, 2021

Friday's Playlist: Unsung Guitar Heroes

Happy Friday! 

Are you in the mood for some tasty guitar? Good. For some unfair reason, these cats are not considered royalty. They're not the Claptons, the Becks, the Hendrix, the Pages of rock n'roll. They're not the Charlie Christians, the Wes Montgomerys, the John McLaughlins, the Pat Methenys of jazz. They're not the BB Kings, the Stevie Ray Vaughans, the Guitar Slims of blues.

Friday, December 10, 2021

Friday's Playlist: Robert Quine - Sessions & Contributions

In contrast with the other episodes in our Sessions & Contributions series, this installment doesn't focus on superstars but rather on an unsung hero of rock music.

Although not a household name, Robert Quine was a pioneer guitarist in the punk, post-punk and no-wave genres although calling him that is greatly limiting the breadth of his talents. Free jazz, folk music, avant-garde...

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Murray Head @ Olympia, Paris - December 8th, 2021

Murray Head has always enjoyed tremendous success in France and his 1976 record Say It Ain't So yielded some of his best known songs, including the hit Say It Ain't So, Joe. So forty-five years after the release of the LP, the Englishman's embarking on a tour where he plays the entire album in sequence. Well, not exactly in sequence: he cleverly starts at song number two, plays the album and then plays the climactic first song of the record, the aforementioned Say It Ain't So, Joe.

Chloe Foy @ Olympia, Paris - December 8th, 2021

Opening for Murray Head, and later joining him as part of his band, is a young British singer songwriter named Chloe Foy. Her first full length album Where Shall We Begin was released last summer. Accompanying herself with a guitar, and aided by another guitarist who would also be part of the main act's band later in the evening, Chloe Foy sang her delicate songs in an angelic, ethereal voice that left the audience spellbound. This is what a support act should always be: a wonderful discovery.

Monday, December 6, 2021

JJ Wilde @ la Maroquinerie, Paris - December 6th, 2021

Canadian rock sensation JJ Wilde is embarking on her first ever European tour, and this is was her first proper concert in France apart a few acoustic promo showcases and radio appearances. Ruthless, the album she released last year, is a great slice of hard driving, good old fashioned rock full of groove and melody.

Friday, December 3, 2021

Friday's Playlist: Madchester and Rave Rockers

This Friday's Playlist focuses on a particular time and place, namely Manchester in the early nineties. Inspired by New Order and similar artists that blended psychedelic pop and electronica, the artists in this Playlist created this specific idiom that is informed equally by rock and rave culture.

Thursday, December 2, 2021

The Black Lips @ Trabendo, Paris - December 2nd, 2021

The reformed bad boys of garage rock have been on a country tangent since the release of their excellent new record Sing in a World That's Falling Apart. But their version of country music is very informed by the seedy, druggy sounds of the Velvet Underground and they end up sounding like murky, punk version of Exile-era Rolling Stones, or Royal Trux attempting Americana, or an even more chaotic version of the Clash. Needless to say, that's a good thing.