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Saturday, December 23, 2006

Top 20 Melancholic New Year's Indie Songs

New Year's Indie Reviews for the Attention-Deficient


Solidarity in Pain, Regret, and Hope for the Holidays
(also published by Blogcritics on-line magazine)

Most of you know the routine of this column by now. If you don't, treat yourself to the warp speed explanations of columns past. Time's a wastin': let's get down to the business of music and the holiday season.

Christmas cheer? Humbugarama! Life does not take a holiday for most of the world from December 25 through January 1. War, heartache, poverty, work, grief, oppression march on unflinchingly. They deserve attention, even from us who struggle so much to lend it despite our best intentions.

Someone I know barely kept his life on Christmas Day when the navy ship on which he was serving was sunk, killing hundreds of comrades and from which he escaped with his body and only part of his mind. He hates Christmas, and not of his own volition. Others find the rampant and aggressive commercialization a cooptation of more human principles at the holiday’s heart. Others still, are in the midst of heartache not of their own choosing. Nor might an indie reviewer, however so attention-challenged, forget that many people in the world have not the resources for its commercial version and/or have no tie to its religious foundation.

So this exceptional IMRFAD goes out to the Attention-deficients who for various reasons find Christmas sad, superficial, lonely, or annoying—any and all of these things.

Focus. Here are twenty songs for those in need of comfort but repulsed by naïve cheer. The list is hardly exhaustive, but you and I have trouble concentrating, so I’m being considerate. Good luck making it through the list, and if you do and need more, you can email me.

1. Oscar the Grouch: “I hate Christmas.” You’re always in good company with this loveably mangy muppet. Raise a glass to the Grouch. He farts on Ikea obsessions and potpourri compulsiveness.

2. Steve Earle: “Christmas in Washington.” Like Cash, at unlikely times he turns an eye toward the underbelly of a situation, this time at Christmas. Earle hearkens back to a time when religion and collective celebration pointed to obligations to one’s fellow creatures, not just self-absorbed consumerism and selective moral criticism. His finale is a tour de force, as he summons the spiritual help of the freedom champions of Christmas Pasts to come back and inspire now: “Come back Woodie Guthrie …Come back Malcolm X/And Martin Luther King/We're marching into Selma/As the bells of freedom ring.”

3. John Doe (of X): “Someone Like You.” This also competes for number one on my sadcore list, depending on the day. Doe's voice yearns, his tears drip from the speakers, as the country guitar simulates the sniffling pedal steel. No one wants to admit it, but there are many out there who never ever recover from the grief of losing their greatest love: "Well it's cold at Dawn/You're so far gone/I still miss Someone like you." A lifetime of regret. May it not visit you, my friends.

4. Elliot Smith: “I Didn’t Understand.” Hard to choose from this tortured soul’s magnificent corpus. “Independence Day” is a close second, though one could find many more with very little effort. Smith is nearly incomparable in putting to music the pain of tortured minds who realize they’ve driven away those they love more than anything else and must face the dark possibility that such is their destiny. (Also worth mentioning, in association with Christmas special "The Year Without a Santa Claus," Smith was in a band called Heatmiser before he went solo.)

5. The Kinks: “Father Christmas” (a single from 1977). Surprising entry by the Kinks, who point out that Christmas has a class underbelly in its Western commercialized version. A sample: “But give my daddy a job cause he needs one/He's got lots of mouths to feed/But if you've got one, Ill have a machine gun/So I can scare all the kids down the street/Father Christmas, give us some money/We got no time for your silly toys/We'll beat you up if you don't hand it over/Give all the toys to the little rich boys.”

6. Sufjan Stevens: Okay, I'm going to depart from my usual routine here at the risk of losing you completely. Hang in there. This guy deserved his own Indie Music Review For the Attention Deficient this year for his album The Avalanche, the follow up to his excellent album "Illinois" (2005).

“Sister Winter” (from Songs for Christmas, 2006): The horns, the sleigh bells, the vocals--
"My heart is returned to Sister Winter...Oh my thoughts I returned to summer time…gave to a beloved who threw it all away.” He then apologizes to all his friends for returning “to Sister Winter.” He wishes them the best, a Happy Christmas, genuinely or ironically. This song perfectly captures the double-edged sword of the holidays; beneath the carolling horns and tinkerbell-ish sleigh and other bells is a drone, violins, a monotone sound constant with grief and inconsolable sorrow.

But a close Sufjan second would go to the acoustic version of “Chicago” (The Avalanche) especially if you’re haunted by regret, mistakes. His voice gently pets you into a dog: “you came to take us /all things go, all things go /to re-create us /all things grow, all things grow /we had our mindset /(I made a lot of mistakes) /all things know, all things know /(I made a lot of mistakes) /you had to find it /(I made a lot of mistakes) /all things go, all things go /(I made a lot of mistakes).” Once again the ambiguity is hope-tinged. Mistakes made, things get re-created, things go, things grow. Some may take this as utterly pessimistic about relationships. In fact, I like the metaphors of growth and re-creation here, which give it a kind of aura reminiscent of Heraclitus's maxim: you never step in the same river twice. Things change, but they also grow, not necessarily requiring total loss to grow and re-create us (not just you or him or her). But you know I'm a total optimist at heart.

7. Merle Haggard: “If We Make it Through December." He sings: "I wanted Christmas to be right for daddy's girl/Now I don't mean to hate December/It's meant to be the happy time of year/And why my little girl don't understand/Why daddy can't afford no Christmas here." If you think you don’t like “country” (as if this is mainstream Nashville Garth Brooks drivel), then grow up. There’s a reason why recovering punk-rockers have turned to classic American country (John Doe of X, Jon Langford of the Mekons,etc.).

8. The Smiths: “There is a light that never goes out.” It’s tough to choose one Smith’s pearl out of their considerable showcases of sad jewels—they have a monopoly on them in underground niche markets of the last twenty years. But this one is inevitably sad-tinged and yet bold, romantic, hopeful: “And if a double-decker bus, crashes into us, to die by your side, well the pleasure, the privilege is mine.” Morissey, a strange troubadoring hybrid descendant of Wilde, Goethe, and Poe.

9. The Cure: “Pictures of You.” Sadness, Regret, Hope aren’t just evoked by music. The visual evidence is a haunted house, a torture chamber, or an oasis on the horizon.

10. Johnny Cash: “Hurt.” The Man in Black—‘nuff said about qualifications. He wears it for the poor, broken-hearted, etc. and if you’re still reading this that includes you. In the last few years before he died, he did some of the most eery, astonishing, monumental covers in the history of modern popular music. This is my favorite, a cover of Nine Inch Nail’s “Hurt.” Throw all sharp objects out the window before listening to this.

11. Serge Gainsbourg: “Les Feuilles Mortes” (The Autumn Leaves). This classic (originally in France, 1942, lyrics by the poet Jacques Prevert) has been covered many, many times. If you've never heard it, time to grow up musically. Afterall, you're grown up unwillingly thanks to heartache, misery, doubt, bad luck, and angst. This dirge is suitably in French, but if you have an "English-only" policy, try Edith Piaf's version (she's the greatest French chanteuse of all time but sings this in English and French) or jazzed-up ones like Chet Baker's or Miles Davis'.

12. Jerry Jeff Walker: “Mr. Bojangles.” This gem has been covered many many times, by "the Byrds, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Harry Nilsson, Bob Dylan, Harry Belafonte, Arlo Guthrie, Nina Simone, John Denver, David Bromberg, Neil Diamond, Sammy Davis, Jr, Tom T. Hall, John Holt, Robbie Williams and David Campbell" among others, and for good reason. Another beautifully sad tale of a hapless man who finds some spring in his step (indeed, he’s a dancing man by métier).

13.Buffalo Tom: “Torchsinger” (Big Red Letter Day). BT’s songs are often poppy, which will veil their angst for some listeners. Excellent songwriting that somehow makes pain toe-tappable.

14. M. Ward: several possibilities, but let’s go with “Vincent O'Brien," in which Ward moves effortlessly from a warble to a Tom Waits: "He only sings when he's sad/and he's sad all the time/so he sings the whole night through/ and he sings in the daytime too."

15. Patsy Cline: “Walkin’ After Midnight.” One of the most distinctive American female vocalists of any genre, and the yardstick of female singers of her generation and after. This is possibly her most famous number, and it is more than fitting for alternative holidays: “I stop to see a weepin' willow/cryin' on his pillow,/maybe he's cryin' for me, /and as the skies turn gloomy, /night winds whisper to me, /I'm lonesome as I can be/I go/out walkin' after midnight, /out in the moonlight,/just hopin' you may be somewhere a walkin' /after midnight searchin' for me.”

16.Cat Power: “Hate.” The Greatest is a feast of self-doubt, -hate, -regret. The Romantic poets don’t have much on these bare arrangements, Chan’s raspy voice a songbird with sinusitis. Only for those not on suicide watch: “they can give me pills/or let me drink my fill/the heart wants to explode/far away where nobody knows/do you believe she said that?/do you believe she said that?/I said I hate myself and I want to die.”

17. Jose Gonzales: “Remain.” Anything off the spectacularly melancholic Veneer will give you your fix, again and again, on a loop that will eventually rock you to sleep, when you feel there’s no way to sleep ever again. “Remain” is ambiguous, hope-tinged. The rain washes away everything, even bloodstains from hearts, and the lovers remain standing—but reconciled? Separate?

18. Richard Buckner: “Blue and Wonder.” His first album established him as a Prince of Indie singer-songwriter darkness (true he has several competitors). His first album, the gloomy masterpiece Bloomed, is one long, perversely sweet funeral procession. Expectations are a gun without a safety trigger. Keep them low: be happy.

19. Lucinda Williams: “ Metal Firecracker” (Car Wheels on a Gravel Road). Again, an artist with multiple offerings for a list about comfort through angst-ridden solidarity. This is one of my favorites, but check out Lucinda’s eponymous album, which features the perfect rhetorical question: “Am I Too Blue (for you)?”

20. Joel R. Phelps and the Downer Trio: “Calling for You.” Former Silkworm rocker has produced some of the saddest and most beautiful singer-songwriter efforts of the last ten years. This one is my favorite, an Iris Dement cover, and it is hard to beat Iris if that tells you anything about the power of this song and Phelps’ rendition. It also is hopeful about reconciliation after hurt has brought love to a dangerous precipice.

I said I would stop there, but Hank Williams Sr. sholdn't be neglected. I just couldn't narrow it to one. Honorable mention also goes to Nick Drake, Joy Division, George Jones, and the Old 97's, especially "Lonely Holiday" and "Valentine." Or, in haiku:

Consumer binges

Up yours! you cheery f-er.

Oscar the Grouch rules!

I wish you a Happy New Year in 2007, friends.

This article also appears in Blogcritics on-line magazine.

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Thursday, December 21, 2006

Tonight at Point Ephemere

Christmas is coming, the goose and Jayson are getting fat. Please put a centime in Point Ephemere's hat...
Tonight.
I repeat:
Dec. 21 Panico + Motormark + Soffy O + Fox n'wolf Typical South American Garage Punk. Lead singer Eduardo of Panico is a "hippie-Latin version of Joey Ramone." The group takes a break from recording a new album to come to Ephémère. "Hippie-Latin" and Ramone? I think I'm in love...

See you there, Parisnormaliens. I'll be the guy in the Devo, Clash, Ramones, Woodie Guthrie, Pavement, Robbie Fulks, Merle Haggard, or Bloodshot Records t-shirt, singing Hank Williams Sr. to himself with five empty pint glasses for friends...That is, unless you join me in this christmas spirit.

Happy, Merry, Consumer Binge!
Jayson

Friday, December 08, 2006

Jayson on next week

Lately I've learned not to look forward to too much in the near future. It's a great new plan: just see what the present does to you, after what you did to it, and try to figure out whether you can do anything with it. Will it be generous? Will it be stingy? Will it be unforgiving? Will it forgive?
What escapes the present?
Is music the great exception?
Crystal balls and bloggerly self-indulgence aside, I look forward to the following. Might you join me in the necessary folly of musical optimism?


Dec. 8 Yes, that's right now. Stop reading this, damn it, and get yer derriere over to the Fleche d'or: Electric President (US); pop electro rock.// Jim Bianco (US); bluesy, south westen eclectic sound, similar to Tom Waits.// Blood Red Shoes. (If you liked Sleater Kinney) // Viva Voce (US); classic american rock. bit of psychedelic influence too.

Golden Grahams--err Member--er Boots. VU meets Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass, says their Myspace page. Give'em clever points.
Fleche d'or: Dec. 19 Golden Boots (US); alt.country. I'll be damned if this high-heeled falutin' Eurotrash don't need a good shot of alt.country.

Maroquinerie
Dec. 14 Les Inrocks Indie Club featuring: The Long Blondes (
UK)(I'm hearing some Siouxie and the Banshees, and I'm likin' it); 60s femme rock. // Good Shoes (UK); new wave.// The Answer (UK).

Also at Maroqui.
Dec. 16 Lords of Altamont (US); Very spaghetti Western, meets cowpunk, lighter more psychedelic Jesus and Mary Chain--all in one song. I kid you not. Follow the link. Dig it.

Nouveau Casino:
Dec. 14 New York Ska-Jazz Ensemble (US): Uh, it's like a ska-jazz ensemble that comes from New York...Come to think of it these pointy-headed and -toed Parisiens could use a good ska kick in the derriere too! If you like experimental ska, don't balk. If you don't know what that is, well, I won't say you shouldn't be here. Just go to it.

Point Ephemere:
Dec 10 Goûter d'écoute de Noël Arte Radio Stories of family, toys of madness, and a light feast for the ears when Arteradio.com presents a line up of musical creations and documentaries. Includes Le Partage, a film by Mathilde Guermonprez of the story of ten brothers and sisters who reunite to divide their parents' belongings. Sniffle...but I bet it's cool.

Dec. 14 Rock Lee Ranaldo (Sonic Youth)+ Two Dollar Guitar with Chris Brokaw + Awesome Color A favorite of Point Ephémère with a solo opening performance from Lee Ranaldo of Sonic Youth. Dude, it's LEE RENALDO, S-O-N-I-C Y-O-U-T-H. Should you go? Duh.

Dec. 19 "Unclassifiable" Klezmer groove Ozone & Marc Ducret + Zakarya Ozone invites Marc Ducret and circumvents guitar, rock'n'roll, and jazz. Difficult to classify Zakarya's jazz, waltz, trash, Balkan rock style, but there goes. What part of "Balkan rock" don't you understand? What part of "trash" doesn't rev your engine? What kind of an America--er, cosmopolite are you?

Dec. 21 Panico + Motormark + Soffy O + Fox n'wolf Typical South American Garage Punk. Lead singer Eduardo of Panico is a "hippie-Latin version of Joey Ramone." The group takes a break from recording a new album to come to Ephémère. "Hippie-Latin" and Ramone? I think I'm in love...

See you there, Parisnormaliens. I'll be the guy in the Devo, Clash, Ramones, Woodie Guthrie, Pavement, Robbie Fulks, Merle Haggard, or Bloodshot Records t-shirt, singing Hank Williams Sr. to himself with five empty pint glasses for friends...That is, unless you join me.

Happy, Merry, Consumer Binge!
Jayson

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

December Calendar

December!

Santa’s here early with…


HOT PICKS:

Danielson, La Maroquinerie Oct. 15

Blood Red Shoes, La Fleche D'Or, Dec.7, 8

Darmstadt, La Fleche D'Or, Dec.11

Long Blonds, Good Shoes La Maroquinerie, Dec. 14

Marianne Dissard, La Fleche D'Or, Dec. 19

Shows
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

.Bataclan

Dec. 9 Mylo Paris Party Release (Scotland); electronic.

Dec. 17 Kagerou (Japan); Japanese rock.

La Fleche D'Or (20me) (No Cover!) Equally exciting offerings.

Picks of the month: Blood Red Shoes, Darmstadt, Marianne Dissard, Glasvegas

Dec. 6 Alexandre Kinn (FR); folk rock. Like a French Jack Johnson.// The Love Bandits (FR); simple, catchy classic rock with a southern blues influences.// Red (FR); rock.

Dec. 7 The Volunteer (UK) Early New Order sound. Dark disco feel.// The Dead Sexy Inc. (US) electro punk.// David & The Citizens (Sweden); vocals sounds like a faster Counting Crows.// Blood Red Shoes (UK); garagey pop sound, catchy.

Dec. 8 Electric President (US); pop electro rock.// Jim Bianco (US); bluesy, south westen eclectic sound, similar to Tom Waits.// Blood Red Shoes. // Viva Voce (US); classic american rock. bit of psychedelic influence too.

Dec. 9 Bo (FR); electro rock.// Dictafone (FR); pop folk.// Electric President.

Dec. 11 Jad Wio// Candy Clash (FR); no wave rock. // Darmstadt (FR) post-punk, joy division/interpol-ish.// Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (FR); poppy, fun rock.

Dec. 13 Alexandre Kinn // The Love Bandits // Red (FR); rock.// Lena Deluxe.

Dec. 15 Koko Von Napoo (FR); 80s new wave.// Osni (FR); rock.// Hopper (FR) Ghinzu-ish sound with less pop.

Dec. 16 Tcheky Karyo (FR); ambiance.// Fauve (CH); jazzy folky stuff with lyrics sung soft as lullabies.// Project Zlust (Macedonia); somber, somewhat eerie Balkan folk music with a modern twist.// Kiril (Macedonia); balkin folk gone electric.

Dec. 18 Jad Wio // Christine (UK); new wave, pop punk.// Cercueil (FR); electronica, pop.// John and Jehn (FR); post-punk with some Doors influences. // Pravda (FR) electro rock.

Dec. 19 Golden Boots (US); country. Neil Young influences and some Velvet Underground.// Marianne Dissard (US); American folk sung in French. Latest album was co-written with Calexico’s Joey Burns.// Naim Amour (US); French folk.

Dec. 20 Alexandre Kinn // The Love Bandits // Red // Charlie O

Dec 22. The Marxmallows (FR); pop punk.// Neimo (FR); rock, new wave.// Madamoiselle K (FR); rock.

Dec. 27 Alexandre Kinn // The Love Bandits // Red // Charlie O

Dec. 28 The Green Olive (FR); poppy rock.// Please Don’t Blame Mexico (FR); poppy but eccentric rock.// Hey Hey My My (FR); rock. // Glasvegas (Scotland); 50s doo-wop with a punkish upbeat.

Maroquinerie

Dec. 2 Sweet Silence (US); emo, acoustic. Cardinal Colère (FR); rock.

Dec. 3 Merry (Sweden); 90s pop rock.

Dec. 4 Troy Von Balthazar (FR); elcetic taste in instruments, something out of music boxes and childrens theatre and blended with rock. Well done.

Dec. 5 Danielson (US); A product of Daniel Smith’s senior thesis, it’s an indie classic in the making. Symphonic, and folky at the same time.// Jeffrey Lewis.

Dec. 6 Badly Drawn Boy (UK); rock.

Dec. 7 Nery Belgistan (FR); French rock.

Dec. 8 Nomeansno (Canada); hardcore.

Dec. 9 Shawn Lee (US)

Dec. 12 Axiom (US); death metal. System of A Down type stuff.

Dec. 14 Les Inrocks Indie Club featuring: The Long Blondes (UK); 60s femme rock. // Good Shoes (UK); new wave.// The Answer (UK).

Dec. 15 New Model Army (US)

Dec. 16 Lords of Altamont (US); psychedelic rock, garage, punk.

Dec. 22 Kiemsa (FR); hardcore with ska?!.// Absolute.// Spic

Nouveau Casino

Dec. 6 Poney Poney (FR); punkish, similar to Talk Taxis.// Fancy (FR); classic rock, rock.

Dec. 11 Mono (Japan); electronic, similar to God Speed You Black Emperor and Mogwai. Playing with Goodbye Diana (Fr); rock.

Dec. 12 Steeple Remove (FR); rock similar to Broken Social Scene.// I love UFO.

Dec. 14 New York Ska-Jazz Ensemble (US); it’s a ska-jazz ensemble from New York! Pretty good stuff.

Dec. 15 Anne Clark (UK) Every sythn-pop sound the 80s ever represented.

Dec. 18 Aswefall// Nelson (FR); electronia base with a punk rock sound.

Dec. 31 Midnight to sun-up, the Casino is hosting a party but with hip hop, funk, rock, and 80s music. 18E with a glass of champagne included.

Point Ephemere (19me)

Dec. 1 Experimental Electro Felix Kübin + Gangpol und Mit + Plateau Repas

Dec.2 Rock The Thermals [+] This Portland, Oregon based band’s gritty post-pop-punk sound comes alive through their “get the fuck out while you can” lyrics. For all those ex-pats fleeing from the states, this is your concert.

Dec. 5 Projection suivie d'un spécial live Transhumance Nicolas Boone Transhumance visual arts. Free entry for those interested.

Dec. 6 French Hip Hop Teki Latex + Just Jack + Yes Boss Former member of French hip hop and twisted electronic band TTC, Teki Latex went solo and with his first single “Disco Dance with You.” If you’re into French Hip Hop, or just looking to dance, Tiki’s new retro sound is sure to be an entertainment at the least.

Dec. 8 Noise Aids Wolf This “noisy and discordant” punk band from Montreal with improv tendencies claims to have no shame. Describing their sound as a squid eating dough in a polyethylene bag, they are part of the current effervescence of Canadian experimental rock.

Dec 10 Goûter d’écoute de Noël Arte Radio Stories of family, toys of madness, and a light feast for the ears when Arteradio.com presents a line up of musical creations and documentaries. Includes Le Partage, a film by Mathilde Guermonprez of the story of ten brothers and sisters who reunite to divide their parents’ belongings.

Dec. 12 Vaudou jazz Adjabel + invités (Fr / Haïti) [+] The Afrobeat of Fela Kuti, the music-Root of Atissou Loko opens a new chapter in the history of Adjabel. A master of the ancestral drums is surrounded by remarkable musicians, Peter Corser on saxophone, clarinet and lambis, Rico Kerridge on guitar, Gillian Mombo with the second drum, and Scott Taylor with a guest appearance on accordion. A mixture of culture voodoo, afro-rates/rhythms, and hypnotic dancing. Rare and rich “like a black pearl,” as Ephémère’s site says.

The Rooooo Christmas Festival- Here’s Point Ephémere’s Christmas present to you in the form of a three night soirée. Choose from the legendary Red Krayola, Lee Ranaldo, or the still youthful Magik Markers

Dec. 13 Rock The Red Krayola + Turzi . The psychedelic, avant-garde rock band from Houston, Texas, formed by art students at the University of St. Thomas in 1966 is no stranger to negative reviews. But nonetheless, they are still alive and rocking with their noise rock, psychedelia and occasionally folk/country songs and instrumentals in a DIY-punk fashion, which says something.

Dec. 14 Rock Lee Ranaldo (Sonic Youth)+ Two Dollar Guitar with Chris Brokaw + Awesome Color A favorite of Point Ephémère with a solo opening performance from Lee Ranaldo of Sonic Youth.

Dec. 18 Rock Jackie O Motherfucker + Magik Markers The last of the three night Christmas Festival features Jackie O Motherfucker’s post-rock, free-jazz or psychedelic folk. The American trio Magik Markers’ improvised rock'n'roll was born along side Sonic Youth last summer in the states.

Dec. 19 “Unclassifiable” Klezmer groove Ozone & Marc Ducret + Zakarya Ozone invites Marc Ducret and circumvents guitar, rock'n'roll, and jazz. Difficult to classify Zakarya’s jazz, waltz, trash, Balkan rock style, but there goes.

Dec. 20 Jazz–slam Ascenseur + Print & D’ de Kabal Slam n’Jazz contest.

Dec. 21 Panico + Motormark + Soffy O + Fox n’wolf Typical South American Garage Punk. Lead singer Eduardo of Panico is a “hippie-Latin version of Joey Ramon.” The group takes a break from recording a new album to come to Ephémère.

Dec. 22 Soirée Dub Excursion party I Electro fans, get in one last soirée before going home for the holidays. Put on by the electro label dub. Live guests include Thierry Arnold, Rondo, Weeding Dub, and Molecule.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

A microhistory of Indie Paris, Past and Present via Sing Sing and Eloise

(Also published by Blog Critics magazine)

At first glance, Paris can be offputting to the self-conscious outsider, the stranger, the detached critic of globalized consumer society and lover of the exception. Indeed, it has a Disney quality, the celebrated literary Left Bank but an anthill teeming with tourists, boutique owners, culturally sanitized museums and un-cafes. It appears designed for the lotus-eating local and globals who reduce life and its manifold pleasures to a robotics of buying and selling, and feel-good guidebook culture . But the heart of an older Paris still beats strongly beneath the anthills and their armies seeking officially administered culture.

Those with a sense of history, look simultaneously teary-eyed on this spectacle and wistfully janus-eyed back on the heyday of Bohemian Paris at the dawn of the 20th century. What was that Paris, so oft-romanticized by contemporary self-declared bohemians and envious wannabes?

In his comparison of bohemian Paris and Beatnik, then punk New York, Jessamin Swearingen writes:
"The term 'bohemian; stems from a region in Czechoslovakia--Bohemia--where the gypsies lived. The French bohemians found themselves mirroring gypsy life."Swearingen refers to a popular book on the Paris Bohemians by Jarrod Siegel, who observes, "The bohemians located themselves in a twilight zone between ingenuity and criminality." The Bohemians eschewed the cultural mainstream, even while they depended on it for patronage.

As Swearingen notes, this phenomenon is not limited to Paris of the belle epoque. It's an ongoing process of conflict and absorption between mainstream and contestatory culture in most market societies.

The bohemians received a fair amount of criticism from the established middle class. Because most participants in the bohemian culture during the late 1800s were artists and writers, the conflict surrounding their lifestyle arose out of the need for artistic output versus the need for societal support. Siegel argues that the conflict of French bohemian identity emerged out of this conflict. He asked, "At what point did personal cultivation cease to be beneficial or acceptable to the society that sponsored it?" (p.11). This aspect of bohemian culture and practice is repeated throughout history.
Indeed, it does. Indie folk, rock, pop, electro, hip hop and their connections to poetry 'zines, indymedia, intellectual life, activism and so forth are the legacy of such subcultures like the Paris bohemians. Indie-bohemian subcultures have been constantly commodified throughout the 20th century by corporate coolhunters, while their spaces of cultural production have been increasingly gentrified, making indie cultures into "civilizers" of ethnic and/or poor areas attractive to part-time bobos. Yet as I said, Indie Paris still kicks if one is willing to stick out one's derriere and ask for it.

A couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of attending one of the indiest of indie music performances—an invite-only show in an apartment in the 20th (is my indie paris cred surging or what?). Lucky for the neighbors it was pretty low-fi, and pretty…pretty.

The performers were the dynamic duet Eloïse Decaze and Sing Sing. Sing Sing is a burly bohemian teddy bear with a penchant for choppy Nick Drake-like acoustic licks, pop melodies and vocal harmonies. Eloïse is a lovely and slight young Genevan in Paris who has a voice like a theremin. They both have a penchant for humming, a low but beautiful form of musical expression on par with the pun in poetry. Together, they also produce some of the sweetest and haunting indie folk I’ve ever heard.

As I said, Eloïse has a voice like a theremin, that weird musical instrument that produces the ghoulish sounds in haunted house scenes and Scooby Doo episodes. Her powerful voice jumps around the scale or moves slowly and strangely as a slide whistle. She is at her best singing old sea shanties and Hungarian folk songs, or giving new life and interpretation to medieval peasant ballads.

Watching Eloïse perform is about as entertaining as listening to her. While she sings she seems near possessed, staring blankly off into the corner of the ceiling, her body threatening to levitate with each climbing note. The total experience gave me my first ever goose bumps at a musical performance.

It will be exciting to see what becomes of this duo (though the attention they deserve demonstrates the very tension at the heart of indie culture in market societies where cultural producers offer products in a market that transforms those contestatory products to compete with toasters and vaccuums). They are living proof that indie creativity still thrives in Paris. I first saw Sing Sing and Eloïse-the-walking-theremin at Le Limonaire “bistrot a vins et a chansons” in Paris, a cheerfully cramped little remnant of a Paris gone by. It does a laudable job of providing space for the folky, cabaret, and nouvelle chanson artists in Paris and the area. Indie Parisians and global wayfarers can look for them there and elsewhere, including the priceless random apartment gig, if they dare lend their ears to the street.



Friday, November 24, 2006

Three Dates for Edgy Female Singer-Songer Helluvah

I've checked out Helluvah's samples on Myspace. See what you think. I really like this slightly edgy acoustic songwriting that breaks into pop in a minor key...
--Jayson
helluvah.contact@gmail.com................................................................ Image Hosted by ImageShack.usImage Hosted by ImageShack.usImage Hosted by ImageShack.us N

Friday, November 17, 2006

Additional Upcoming Tres Indie Shows

If you like indie folk, check out Little Red Lauter. These shows are free and in some very cool little intimate digs.
-Jayson


Nov 18 2006 21h
little red lauter (folk pop)
dominique pascaud (french pop)
@ La bicyclette, 5 rue chaumont, 75019
Cost : free

Nov 22 2006 20h00 little red lauter with poney pie / le club des chats @ le pop in
105 r Amelot, paris, Ile-de-France 75011
Cost : free


Dec 06 2006 21h little red with this is the with / rivkah
@ l'opa, 9 rue biscornet, 75012
cost : free

Sufjan Stevens at Bataclan (by Vanessa Lash)

Sufjan Stevens at Le Bataclan
Nov. 9, 2006

For the last few days, I’m sure I’ve come across as a bit of a Christmas fanatic, that is, at least to any strangers passing me on the street who’ve heard me sing “siiiiiiilent niiiight, hoooooly niiiight” along with my ipod. The culprit of said apparent holiday cheer is not actually an early boost of holiday spirit, but is rather Sufjan Stevens, and specifically the silent night refrain at the end of his, “That Was the Worst Christmas Ever!” released later this month on the 5-cd “Songs For Christmas” compilation. Like most Sufjan Stevens tracks, however, it works in the headphones, but on stage this song becomes a complete, beautiful wall of sound. I learned this last night at his sold-out concert at Le Bataclan.

My I’m-on-the-guest-list, let’s-go-find-an-amazing-restaurant-on-Rue-Oberkampf-we’ve-got-time friend and I were a little late to the show; when we showed up at nine, the massive line out front had subsided, and the vibe inside Le Bataclan felt a bit like walking into an elementary school play in a crowded auditorium. A packed audience sat silently in the converted theater, and the show onstage offered a glimpse of the best kind of childlike nostalgia – Sufjan and his team had each donned huge wings, something in between Halloween costumes and gorgeous kites, and the screen behind them offered home video style projections to highlight each song.

The sheer extent of the stage show, including Stevens’ brass section, drummer, kickass sidelines do-everything girl and roughly five other musicians, a piano, ten inflatable Santas leaned up against each other, and various other instruments, props and people made the Bataclan appear suddenly intimate. Sufjan is the best kind of singer-songwriter, and weaves his banjo, bell, horn and piano-laden songs around intensely American themes and concepts. The most notable of these has been his 50 states project, which to date has produced the impressive Greetings from Michigan – The Great Lake State and the much acclaimed Illinois. That a man whose songs include titles such as, “Out of Egypt, into the Great Laugh of Mankind, and I shake the dirt from my sandals as I run” would have a stage show that is lovingly spectacular is no surprise, and the Sufjan clan demonstrated this in boundless ways throughout the course of the night. A highlight was the performance of “Oh Detroit, Lift Up Your Weary Head (Restore, Rebuild, Reconsider!)" which was led into by Stevens after he talked about the Tigers going to the World Series, and how “Whenever we play this song, good things happen in Detroit.” Well, good things happen in Paris, too. Swirling kaleidoscopes led into towering skyscrapers on the screen behind them as the entire gang gave “Detroit” their all, bells chiming, piano thundering.

Stevens peppered most songs – a good amount from the recent Illinois and the accompanying outtakes disk - with prefaces like that one, quirky and sincere, offering little stories often as nostalgic as the video footage playing behind the band. “The Predatory Wasp of the Palisades Is Out to Get Us!” was ushered in by a story about summer camp, sinking canoes, and being “eight or nine,” and the hushed, enchanted audience loved it. Sufjan introduced “Magesty Snowbird” as the group’s “theme song” for the tour, as they were debuting it on stage all over the world. Introducing “That Was the Worst Christmas Ever!” Sufjan explained his history of recording Christmas carols for his grandmother, who cries at his normal material and calls it too “weird.” This got a laugh from the audience, but it’s the weirdness-meets-heartbreak that so many of Stevens’ songs hold up with a power fist (or banjo) that made this show, like so many of his tracks and projects, so perfect.

Download “That Was the Worst Christmas Ever from Asthmatic Kitty Records

See a bit of “Casimir Pulaski Day” from last night’s show:

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Sufjan Stevens at Bataclan (by Bill Kutz)

Sufjan Stevens au Bataclan

November 9, 2006

Bill Kutz

It's one thing to hear great music, but it's another thing to see greatness unfold on stage. Sufjan Stevens' recent trip to Paris has left me with a reaffirmed belief in his musical genius, but I can't help but feel that the reunion was a little bittersweet.

The last time I saw Sufjan in concert was in a small hall in Santa Cruz just after the release of Illinois. It was the perfect show: cheap tickets and a small standing crowd of 50. It was intimate, with that feeling that you get when watching local garage concerts. Sufjan's performance Santa Cruz was already heavily theatrical: his "Illinoise-makers" popped out from behind a green cubical wall (backstage!) decked in blue shirts, silk-screened with a bright orange "I" for Illinois. They danced chanting "I-L-L-I-N-O-I-S" with gold pom-poms in hand. Then maestro appeared and the magic began.

Recently at the Bataclan, I was not sure what to expect. Sufjan moved away from the spirit finger routine into something a bit more... lofty. Possibly in a drive to shake the shackles of a fandom demanding 50 state’s albums, his new obsession has been birds. The Illinoise-makers shed their cocoons and became something to the tune of the "Butterfly Band." Everyone this go-around had what looked like transparent colored paper wings of various (happy) winged creatures. True to form, there weren’t any Jabberwockies or gargoyles but dragonflies and hummingbirds. Sufjan, with largest wings of all, would sway back and forth on stage to make the Velcro totem-poll wings flap as though wanting to take flight.

The Bataclan transition was again musically flawless. Sufjan proved his ability to handle the larger venue and still keep the same rich orchestrated sounds. He even ripped some indie ear-melting chaotic tangents and brought them all back in perfect harmony. In particular, I enjoyed how some songs were finally given the monumentality they deserved, like "Dear Mr. Supercomputer" and "Man of Metropolis." They both foreground the electronic instruments usually given a more balanced place in Sufjan’s music. It's too bad he never played "Vito's Ordination Song" because the drums would have been perfect for that situation.

Yet with the larger venue much of the intimacy from the Santa Cruz venue was lost. After all, this is folk music he's playing here. Folk isn't about eight foot high marshal crates and subwoofers. Many of the songs that Sufjan is particularly celebrated for like "Casimir Pulaski Day," "John Wayne Gacy Jr.," and "Chicago" didn't really sound so hot with a bunch of extra bells and whistles. Also, when they were played in Santa Cruz, I felt like they had a much rawer, if not bare, sound like that found in the Outtakes from Michigan album. When Sufjan played "Casimir Pulaski Day," it was just he and the trumpeter. It’s a bit melodramatic, but it really felt like he was telling it from his heart. How are you supposed to capture that when the stage is so disengaging? It made me wish for the old Sufjan--i.e. the other stage.

Even if this wasn’t the case, I don't think it would have mattered much. The French are notoriously tough crowds (the mosh pits are more like flowerbeds), and the Bataclan was no different. While the concert was sitting room only, I found the crowd unusually unresponsive to the inter-song gags.

All the same, Sufjan kept his childhood stories and jokes flowing, interwoven between every couple songs. His grandmother's distaste for his music (it being "too sad") shed some humorous light on a man fairly hidden by the stories and music around him, which even he acknowledges. In Santa Cruz, after playing "John Wayne Gacy Jr.," Sufjan paused and said, "Wow, that was depressing!"

But the night was not depressing in the least. Sufjan carried the show through to the very end like any master entertainer, synergizing his music with his audience. That is why we keep coming back to his shows and why they are being continually sold out quicker with each tour (in this case, close to two months and in France!). His music has been in a constant state of evolution, and each album shows a greater understanding and maturity of the tone and structure. The question to ask now is, “What direction will his music take next?” The pleasure is that there's no answer.

Friday, November 03, 2006

News Flash: Peniche Show Wednesday Nov. 15

NOVEMBER CALENDAR

NOVEMBER!

And you thought October was a good month…


HOT PICKS:
Arab Strap,
Le Trabendo
, Nov. 28
Mojave3,
La Maroquinerie, Nov. 18

The Stills, La Fleche D'Or, Nov. 16

Les Inrocks, La Cigale, Nov 9-12
Sufjan Stevens,
Bataclan, Nov. 9

Shows
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Bataclan

Nov. 8 Les Tetes Raides (FR); jazz manouche meets punk rock. Honorable mention. They’ve been quite popular with indie French university students for many years.

Nov. 9 Sufjan Stevens (US); A Pick of the Month! On his way to indie folk Olympus. Went to the New School to become a literature professor, instead he made a band and writes rich poetic songs about the human condition, state historical figures, and cities.

Nov. 10 The Bellrays (US); funky rock.

Nov. 11 Kuduru Sound System// Mania

Nov. 13 Cradle of Filth (UK); metal, gothic.

Nov. 15 The Killers (US); 80s rock revivalists. Sold out.

Nov. 17 Lambchop (Nashville); mellow, 70s era country rock // The Dafo String Quartet.

Nov. 18 La Ruda (FR); punk, ska, rock.

Nov. 22 Dominique A (FR); called a lyricist without limits.

Nov. 26 Tokio Hotel; Sold out. German pop rock.

Nov. 27-28 The Roots (US)

Le Batofar (13me)

La Boule Noire (9me)

Nov. 9 – INROCKS FESTIVAL – Joan as a Policewoman, Au Revoir Simone and Tender Forever; Get your Brooklyn dose with Joan as a Policewoman and Au Revoir Simone (self proclaimed “triple keyboard action”), who hit the stage alongside Tender Forever. TF is aka French expat Melanie Valera, whose debut last year embodies the best that K Records has to offer. It’s lo-fi at its best, its most childlike yet flirtatious. Think Chantal Goya meets Beat Happening meets lyrics about making out.

Nov. 1 - THE GOOD BOOKS (UK) with BEIRUT (US); If you haven’t heard them yet, these two bands are easy to fall for. The Good Books play well-crafted indie pop, while Beirut is simply awesome, combining Balkan brass with crooning vocals and a dance party vibe. A good-mood show for sure.

Nov. 12 – Sean Lennon; – Self explanatory (and sold out).

13-11-06 - AMERICAN HEAD CHARGE (US) – rock/metal.

15-11-06 - BIKINI MACHINE (Germany) - house

16-11-06 - RODEO MASSACRE – Coolly combines Sweden, garage rock and style; with RHESUS, indie pop trio from Grenoble

20-11-06 - PLASTER (US) – metal with ARIANE MOFFATT (Montreal) – electro-pop

21-11-0623-11-06 THOMAS VEROVSKY

24-11-06 - MADJID ZIOUANE – French/Arab pop

24-11-06 - GUILLO, DROLE DE SIRE and IVAN TIRTIAUX

26-11-06 - BACKYARDS BABIES

27-11-06 - MARIE CHERRIER

28-11-06 - FEVERISH (FR) – Emo/metal

28-11-06 - ED AKE

28-11-06 - ELEVATE NEWTON'S THEORY (Fr)– Guitar driven indie rock with the occasional hand clap thrown in

30-11-06 - PIERRE LAPOINTE

La Cigale (18me)

11.07 Axel Bauer (Paris) French 80s one-hit wonder making a comeback

11.09-11.12 Inrocks Fest Highlight of the month.

Le 9 novembre : 18h - 27,40 €

- Giant Drag (US)

- Keny Arkana (FR)

- Lily Allen (UK)

- Cirkus (SE)

This night’s combination of French rap, boy-girl indie coupling from LA and Swedish trip-hop is bound to be an interesting mix even without now-ubiquitous Lily Allen’s ska/pop crooning. Thursday’s show is sure to be eclectic at least and one of the most interesting nights of the Inrocks fest at best. Worth it just to hear Giant Drag’s fan favorite, a scratch guitar cover of Wicked Game.

Le 10 novembre : 18h - 27,40 € (sold out)

- The Kooks (UK)

- The Spinto Band (US)

- Boy Kill Boy (UK)

- Mumm-Ra (UK)

One of the few things of note to hail from Wilmington, DE besides most US credit cards and the addresses of a hefty stock of fake IDs, the Spinto Band offer a crazy live show and likeably quirky vocalists. They join Brits the Kooks, equally British Boy Kill Boy and Mumm-Ra. A night of young energetic bands from the UK and…Delaware who may or may not wish they were the Killers.

Le 11 novembre : 17h15 - 27,40 €

- Midlake (US)

- Guillemots (UK)

- Love Is All (SE)

- Bat For Lashes (UK)

- Gang Of Four (US)

Another eclectic Inrocks night – Midlake sets a mellower tone, while classic punk rock outfit Gang of Four and Love Is All – a sort of Sweden meets the Rapture meets Deerhoof – ensuring a euphoric energy as the night goes on. Definitely worth checking out

Le 12 novembre : 17h15 - 27,40 €

- The Pipettes (UK)

- Arman Méliès (FR)

- Tapes'n Tapes (US)

- Jarvis Cocker (UK)

- Plan B (US/EU)

Definitely a contender for the best Inrocks Fest night, at least at La Cigale. The Pipettes are an infectiously adorable girl group, Spector influenced in sound and aesthetic. Their live shows don’t miss a beat. Tapes ‘n’ Tapes, hailing from Minneapolis, MN, broke through last year with the Loon and offer the best sides of indie rock, from the raw to the catchy to the melodic. Up-and-comer Jarvis Cocker’s charmingly ironic pop and Plan B’s melodic electronica make this absolutely a night to check out.

11.13 Ilene Barnes (FR) Folk-rock/electric French solo artist.

11.14 Meshell Ndegeocello (US) Soul.

11.15 Jack the Ripper – Paris indie band(sold out)

11.16-17 Jean Louis Murat (FR)

11.18 Marcel et son Orchestre (Lille, FR)

11.20 Jean Pierre Como (FR)

11.21-December Vincent Delerm

Le Divan du Monde (18me)

Elysee Montmartre: (18me)

11.07 Axel Bauer (Paris) French 80s one-hit wonder making a comeback

11.09-11.12 Inrocks Fest Highlight of the month.

Le 9 novembre : 18h - 27,40 €

- Giant Drag (US)

- Keny Arkana (FR)

- Lily Allen (UK)

- Cirkus (SE)

This night’s combination of French rap, boy-girl indie coupling from LA and Swedish trip-hop is bound to be an interesting mix even without now-ubiquitous Lily Allen’s ska/pop crooning. Thursday’s show is sure to be eclectic at least and one of the most interesting nights of the Inrocks fest at best. Worth it just to hear Giant Drag’s fan favorite, a scratch guitar cover of Wicked Game.

Le 10 novembre : 18h - 27,40 € (sold out)

- The Kooks (UK)

- The Spinto Band (US)

- Boy Kill Boy (UK)

- Mumm-Ra (UK)

One of the few things of note to hail from Wilmington, DE besides most US credit cards and the addresses of a hefty stock of fake IDs, the Spinto Band offer a crazy live show and likeably quirky vocalists. They join Brits the Kooks, equally British Boy Kill Boy and Mumm-Ra. A night of young energetic bands from the UK and…Delaware who may or may not wish they were the Killers.

Le 11 novembre : 17h15 - 27,40 €

- Midlake (US)

- Guillemots (UK)

- Love Is All (SE)

- Bat For Lashes (UK)

- Gang Of Four (US)

Another eclectic Inrocks night – Midlake sets a mellower tone, while classic punk rock outfit Gang of Four and Love Is All – a sort of Sweden meets the Rapture meets Deerhoof – ensuring a euphoric energy as the night goes on. Definitely worth checking out

Le 12 novembre : 17h15 - 27,40 €

- The Pipettes (UK)

- Arman Méliès (FR)

- Tapes'n Tapes (US)

- Jarvis Cocker (UK)

- Plan B (US/EU)

Definitely a contender for the best Inrocks Fest night, at least at La Cigale. The Pipettes are an infectiously adorable girl group, Spector influenced in sound and aesthetic. Their live shows don’t miss a beat. Tapes ‘n’ Tapes, hailing from Minneapolis, MN, broke through last year with the Loon and offer the best sides of indie rock, from the raw to the catchy to the melodic. Up-and-comer Jarvis Cocker’s charmingly ironic pop and Plan B’s melodic electronica make this absolutely a night to check out.

11.13 Ilene Barnes (FR) Folk-rock/electric French solo artist.

11.14 Meshell Ndegeocello (US) Soul.

11.15 Jack the Ripper – Paris indie band(sold out)

11.16-17 Jean Louis Murat (FR)

11.18 Marcel et son Orchestre (Lille, FR)

11.20 Jean Pierre Como (FR)

11.21-December Vincent Delerm

La Fleche D'Or (20me) (No Cover!) Equally exciting offerings.

Nov. 9 CandyClash (FR); Children of the “no wave” rock movement. Mellow driving rhythm and lyrics with some catchy electro-syth thrown in. Recommended. // Axel and The Farmers (UK); sometimes eerie, sometimes dance-poppy melody beats // Champion Kickboxer (UK); // Smokers Die Younger (UK); modest mousey rock.

Nov. 10 Feminists Unite! Girl power all night at the Golden Arrow featuring Madjo (FR);
Folk // Mayane (FR); folk, light rock // Sorry Gilberto (Ger); simple melodies reminicent of the Velvet Underground with lyrics life’s simple pleasures. Recommended. // IKU (FR); garage.

Nov. 11 Speedball Jr (Bel); Punk meets 60s surfer. // The Midnight Vultures (FR); raw
early 60s rock, Kink-like beat. Fast, catchy, and wailing vocals that leave you demanding more. // Taxi (IT); punk rock. // The Hormonas (IT); rockabilly.

Nov. 14 120 Days (Nor); experimental rock // I Got You on Tape (Den); dark riffs and
throb bass rock style similar to Joy Division and Interpol. Highly recommended. // Serena Maneesh (Nor); gothic, rock. // The Broken Beats (Den); Rock infused with symphonic melodies.

Nov. 16 . The Stills (Canada); rich, full bodied alternative rock. Vitamins for You (Canada); a blend of electronica and alternative rock. Both Canadians are worth checking out. Apple Shift (FR); pop rock. // Prudence Team (FR); pop.

Nov. 18 Delanies (UK); rock, rockabilly. Some punk influences. // The Electric Cinema (UK); electronic rock, similar to a slower Broken Social Scene or Most Serene Republic. We Yes You No (UK); experimental rock.

Nov. 20 120 Days (Nor); experimental rock. Sorta Chemical Brothersy with an 80s twist. // I Got You on Tape (Den); think Talk Taxis on tranquilizers. // Serena Maneesh (Nor); psychedelic rock. // The Broken Beats (Den); pop rock.

Nov. 21 The Byrons (FR); psychedelic, rock.// Montgomery (FR); galactic sounds, Mario Brothers beats, pop-rock and gothic. These guys are all over the board. // Clint (FR); alternative, garage.// Gush (FR); hair-band with an unusually poppy/funk sound.

Nov. 23 Lozninger (FR); mellow experimental rock, folk.// Edith Frost (US); a voice and sound light as a cloud.// Dawn Landes (US); folk.// Espers (US); psychedelic rock, folk.

Nov. 24 Hymn (FR) rock.// Damien (FR)// Yelle (FR).

Nov. 27 The Norvins (FR); punk, rock.// Cryptones (FR) punk. Sound like they would be good on stage.// Bellmer Dolls (US) gothic.// Capitol K (UK); schizophrenic rock.

Nov. 28 Bandini (FR) typical French rock.// Limousine (FR) ambiance.// Lisa Papineau (FR) experimental.// Twentysixfeet (UK)// Plaster (Canada)// Paco Volume (FR) voice sounds like Bowie.

Nov. 30 Time Factory (FR); electro-pop// Convertible (FR); rock, hint of post-punk. // Crocodiles(FR); rock.// Foxglove (FR); // Sukilove (Belg); rock.


Les Mains d'Oeuvres (St. Ouen)

La Maroquinerie A banner month! Difficult to narrow best picks down to two!

Nov. 1 The Saints (UK); classic rock, punk influences too.

Nov. 3 The Levellers (UK); celtic punk rock // Angie Palmer (UK); Christian folky rock.

Nov. 6 Paolo Nutini (Paisley, Scotland); Incredible voice. Similar to James Blunt and

early Chris Martin. Concert has moved to Elysee Montmarte

Nov. 10 Kepa Junkera Sextet (Spain) known as “The other Basque Music.”

Nov. 11 Guerilla Poubelle (FR); compared to classic 80s french (Cadavres, Les Rats) and overseas punk rock (Rancid). // Eric Panic (Canada).

Nov. 12 Guerilla Poubelle // Coquettish (Japan); hardcore vocals with a punky/ska rythm.

Nov. 13 Festival Coup d’Pousse: Bahasabé

Nov. 14 Lemonheads (US); alternative/rock.

Nov. 15 Hey Will Power (US); dance poppy R&B, played with Le Tigre although much less dance rock, more Super Mario synth beats. // Teki Latex.

Nov. 16 Les Inrocks Indie Club no. 12; We Are Scientists (US) // You Say Party! We Say Die! (Canada) // Tchen Tchen (Paris); dance rock.

Pick of the Month!

Nov. 18 Mojave 3 (UK); mellow Joseph Arthur/ Kings of Convenience/ Beachwood

Sparks style with a touch of down home Americana country.// La Maison Tellier (FR); Anglophone frenchmen with a country rock beat. // Castanets (US).

Nov. 19 Holy Moses (Ger.) death metal. // No Returns// Chaos Theory (US) death metal.

Nov. 24 Datarock (Norway); pretty similar to Electric Six, both musically and lyrically. Strong funk sound.

Nov. 29 The Feeling (UK); VERY poppy music.

La Miroiterie (A squat, art and music space in Menilmontant, 20me)

Oct. 15 The Rodéo + Mischief Brew + Helluvah - La Miroiterie

Nouveau Casino Pick of the Month: Pere Ubu. Don't miss a classic!

Oct. 13 Pere Ubu (US); experimental rock. Founded in 1975, they have “defined the face of music ever since” with their style of midwestern riff rock and syth. They claim to have influenced Joy Division, Pixies, and REM among others.// Frigo (FR); pop electric/experimental rock.

Oct. 16 Elli Medeiros (FR); pop-rock, alternative.

Oct. 17 Sophie Solomon (UK); Eastern European folk, lounge.

Oct. 18 Lazy (FR); Rock. Rage Against the Machine, System of a Down.

Oct. 21 Shora (CH); experimental comme God Speed You Black Emperor.

Oct. 23 Elli Medeiros

Oct. 26 The Spits (US); similar to early Ramones, will be accompanied by Jacklean Kikuko (Japan) and Volt.

Oct. 31 Evergrey (Germany); Rock.

L’Olympic Cafe (18me) Located appropriately in the edgy and mixed Goutte d’Or, this place might be described as offering Indie World Music.


Point Ephemere (19me)

Nov. 3 Ambient Rock Animal Collective + Davide Balula + \'skate music mix\' by büro selector: Aï

Nov. 4 Electro Pop:Olamm & friends + The Konki Duet + Hypo Dj / Davide Balula Dj

Nov. 10 “Intelligent Rock” (That’s what their site says): The One Ensemble of Daniel Padden + Permanent Fatal Error

Le Trabendo (19me) Pick of the Month: Arab Strap

Nov. 4 Roce

Nov. 6 Ben Kweller (US)

Nov. 7 Charlélie Couture (FR) Rock.

Nov. 11 Kaiser Chiefs (UK). Sold out.

Nov. 15 Merzhin (FR); mix of rock, Celtic, and eastern European influences.

Nov. 20 Arrested Development (US); Hip hop, soul.

Nov. 23 Alexis on Fire; Hard rock.

Nov. 25 Sebastien Tellier (FR); electro pop lounge. Anglophone.

Pick of the Month!

Nov. 28 Arab Strap (Scotland); One of the great lyricists who has truely mastered the art of depression and solitude. Similar to Three Mile Pilot, Black Box Recorder, and some Belle and Sebastian.

Other Debatably Indie Info:

  • Antonin Artaud Expo: Mr. "Theatre of Cruelty" on Display at the BN.
  • Mois de la Photo: The network's first joint project, an exhibition entitled "Mutations" ("Transformations"), takes as its theme the profound technological and artistic changes taking place in contemporary European photography.

Formerly "Parisnormale: Paris Rocks"