UPCOMING SHOWS:

UPCOMING SHOWS:

Sat. April 30
KONONO N°1 FEAT. BATUDA
(Le Grand Mix, Tourcoing)

Sun. May 1
HELL
(The Pit's, Kortrijk)

Thu. May 5
Awesome Tapes From Africa dj set
(Treehou5e Open Air, Ghent)

Fri. May 6
Invisible Hands / Neil Michael Hagerty & The Howling Hex / DSR Lines
(Vooruit, Ghent)

Sat. May 7
CRITES
(De Ruimte, Ghent)

Tue. May 10
SEX CRIME + THE ARROGANTS
(De Pit's, Kortrijk)

Thu. May 12
QUANTIC
(DOK, Ghent)

Fri. May 13
ARCHIE & THE BUNKERS
(Het Bos, Antwerp)

Sun. May 15
THRONEFEST (Taake, Inquisition, Mgla, Batushka, Inferno, Dysangellium, Wiegedood & The Commitee)
(Kubox, Kuurne)

Thu. May 26
PAUL COLLINS BEAT
(Den Trap, Kortrijk)

Fri. May 27
BEAK>
(Trix, Antwerp)

Wed. June 1
TY SEGALL & THE MUGGERS
(Botanique, Brussels)

Wed. June 8
UNCANNY VALLEY: THE LOS ANGELES FREE MUSIC SOCIETY AND THEIR LEGACY (WOLF EYES, etc.)
(Vooruit, Ghent)

Wed. June 22
FÖLLAKZOID
(Het Bos, Antwerp)






Saturday, May 05, 2007

Some live reviews

Phew… it's been busy around here, especially concert wise. Early April, I went to see the Demon’s Claws at the mighty Pit’s club near the French border. The band only played for half an hour (due to the Pit’s infamous curfew at 10:00 PM) but the show was really amazing. The Demon’s Claws have this wonderful raunchy country rock ‘n roll sound: heartfelt vocals & guitars galore. Totally my kinda thing! The band before the Demon’s Claws was M.O.T.O. whose poppy punk tunes were hard to bear…

A couple of days later I went to see Josephine Foster because Jay 'Detailed Twang' Hinman is a big fan of hers and since he’s one of the few guys I trust music wise, I didn’t want to miss her second passage to Ghent. I’m glad I did because the show was a revelation! Foster actually hums more than she sings but it’s amazing how she soaks the listener into her own hermetic wonderland. She was backed by a tremendous electric guitar player whose beautifully subtle playing made the show a true delicacy. I also enjoyed Bridget St John’s acoustic solo gig although I think my niece got it right when she said her lyrics were too much of the ‘open sandals and woolly socks’ type if you know what I mean. The headlining band that night was a Belgian band with the silly name Kiss the Anus of a Black Cat. Because the influences were too obvious (Current 93, Swans, 16 Horsepower…) we left the club after a few songs, not in the least because of the ugly rock sound.


Mid-April, I went to see Kaushiki Chakrabarty, a superb young Indian classical singer whose ‘Pure’ album on Sense World Music collected the coveted BBC World Music Award for Asia/Pacific in 2005. It’s the kind of spiritually uplifting and meditative album that gets you in the right mood after a hard working week. Before the show, my wife and I visited a delicious Indian restaurant called Saffraan so we were really in the right mood for the show. Besides Chakrabarty on vocals, Vyasmurti Anandteerth Katti on harmonium and Subhasis Bhattacharjee on tabla, a white female called Julia Ohrmann played the tanpura. This is quite a remarkable instrument since it resembles a sitar except it has no frets. The neck is hollow, and it has four or five wire strings, which are plucked one after another in a regular pattern to create a tonic resonance field, the so-called tanpura drone. The performance was splendid.

Later that week, I went to see the Melvins. Don’t ask me why because when I saw them some 15 years ago at a place called Democrazy in Ghent, I left for the bar next doors after 3 songs. I guess I wanted to give them another chance after having read a rather interesting interview in The Wire by Phil Freeman. I entered Belgium’s rock temple when (Men of) Porn were playing. Their experimental macho-metal rock was embarrassing so I went for a drink at the bar; way too expensive and sold by some of the most pretentious cunts I’ve come across in a long time. God, how I hate this place! And I’m not even talking about the bullshit security guards! Oh well, I saw about 1,5 minutes of Big Business (both bands are side-projects by Melvins members… yawny yawn yawn) and I was constantly asking myself what the fuck I was doing there. Bored to death, I went for a walk outside and once back in the big hall where the Melvins had started to play, I realised how much I hate these big rock concerts with their bombastic sound and acritical audience. No more Melvins for me, that’s for sure!



The 8th edition of The Ultimate Americana Music Fest Blue Highways in Utrecht, Holland revealed some real surprises: Pieta Brown for example played an enchantingly beautiful set; imagine the first Cowboy Junkies album if it was produced by David Lynch. Brown's intimate devotion and Bo Ramsey's delicate guitar playing were a formula for success! Without a doubt, one of the best shows of the year! The Road Kings featuring Jesse Dayton played some of the meanest rockabilly I ever witnessed on stage. You might get an impression of their raucous set if I tell you that the stand-up bass player wore a Morbid Angel t-shirt and Dayton spitted on stage like a mad bull. Hell yeah! The Hacienda Brothers' wonderful Chicano soul was another real highlight with some tremendous guitar playing by ex-Paladin Dave Gonzalez. Wow! I also very much enjoyed Danny & Dusty’s set (blinking nostalgia from my eyes), the few songs I saw of Kris Delmhorst & Band and Kevn Kinney’s S.T.A.R. who closed the festival in true style. Of course, I had to skip some concerts (Po’Girl, Diana Jones, Hayden Thompson, Joe Ely) but the ones I saw were all great, except for the terrible hard rock of Shooter Jennings who sounded like a mix between Stone Temple Pilots and Guns ‘n Roses: Ouch!!!



At the festival, I missed Ollabelle’s performance because I absolutely wanted to see Danny & Dusty but I went to check out this wonderful quintet a week later in my hometown. Ollabelle features Levon Helm’s daughter, who you all know as drummer for The Band, as well as another delightful front woman and 3 amazing musicians. The Staple Singers turned out to be a big inspiration for the band but besides gospel music, Harry Smith and Alan Lomax also seem to be of big importance. They played a wonderful Blind Willie Johnson cover as well as a majestic Al Green-like soul ballad. A band to cherish!

Pistolera, also from New York, was the supporting band that night and treated the few visitors to a great mix of Latin American music (tex mex, ranchera, cumbia, reggae etc.). The quartet sounded like a sexier version of Brave Combo and turned me into a dancing fool! Fun!!!

This week finally, I went to see The Sadies just across the border in Holland. The band played for free at a coffee shop in Terneuzen and they were truly wonderful. Again, a very exciting mix of many great styles (surf, bluegrass, Ennio Morricone-esque spaghetti Western, and 60s punk…) and some very good & nice musicians. Me gusta mucho! Two days later, Los Lobos played a terrific set at the Ancienne Belgique and because it’s one of the very few bands whose releases I keep on buying, a Los Lobos concert for me is always a triumphal thing. Viva Los Lobos!!!

1 comment:

mya said...

I love the music these guys make. The one and only time I have seen them live was in a little club in LA .. Great show, Los Lobos tickets were cheap and you should have seen how people crowd reacted. They cross boundaries for those who love good music.