Last week I went to the ultra hip (I don’t know if it is) Village Underground , down a very small street with no sign out the front just two dark gates behind it what looks to be a bit of old train tunnel in Shoreditch ,to witness a performance by the most brilliant and under rated french artist Sebastien Tellier. Many of you may know him as the French entry at the 2008 Eurovision contest. But he is much more than all that.
There are 2 sides to Sebastien Tellier, the dirty sexually charged music baron who drinks and smokes too much living up to every french stereotype that Gerard Depardieu created. And then there is the other side which creates some of the most beautiful pieces of music that have graced my ears and made my heart stop a little, songs of love and devotion, the sensitive soul.
Tonight we had the first incarnation.
He played for 2 and a half hours in which we got about 12 songs, so you can gather the songs are of an average length (except the 10 minute epic La Ritournelle) so what took up the rest of the time? I think it was some sort of attempt at stand up comedy. It was funny to begin with, very funny but as the chain-smoking and wine drinking continued it just was less so and in parts nerve touching and jaw dropping. (Stop destroying the illusion I have of you built up in my head!!).
Was he off his head? Was the joke on us? I will never know but when your crowd start to yell play a song, your backing band look bored and the audience start to leave you need to stick your day job.
When he did his day job he was brilliant, playing the hits and avoiding the majority of the new album,( which and I am warming to this Brazilian infused long player)..As usual, he sounded amazing live. Divine and Cochon Ville played after each other was almost too exciting.His stripped back version of La Ritournelle was just..breath taking, (must see if he has a recorded version out) if I could have hugged the music I would have done. For all the bizzarreness of that evening I still am in complete awe of him.
So here is a play list of all his absolute best in my humble opinion , I could have just put each album in there. But no, Ive restrained. I implore you give him a go there is quite a variety of styles. Not into the beautiful ballads? The dance tracks should sort that out.
I normally dont like sharing clips but his entry into eurovision is too good to not share.
But how does one conduct ones self?
As I have been going to shows for 20 years now (I started very young…) I began thinking about having to be in a small space with a lot of people, there are still things I find irritating and as I have gotten older the audience dynamic and technology has changed, but the basics I still find irritating, especially with the stupid ticket prices of some shows lately.
- If your going to clap along, clap in time. (Billy Corgan once stopped a show because of irregularities in clapping)
- It’s ok to take a quick picture, but I have had to watch almost entire songs (normally when the hit is played) through someones mobile phone device, some of these are as big as tablets! It’s rude and not cool and removes a lot of enjoyment. Why can’t people go to the back and use zoom?
- Talking during quiet songs. Are you feeling suddenly unwell? Is it that important to begin a lengthy conversation during a very quiet song? By doing this will you benefit all humanity? No I didn’t think so, you have the rest of your life to say whatever nonsense you want to impart I think it can wait.
- If your going to dance/mosh in the front of the stage don’t take half your beer in and decide to chuck it in the air. No one wants to be covered in your cheap beer and back wash.
- If your tall it is very impolite to push through stand right in front of a short person ( so in front my nose is touching your back) I’ve paid to see a performance not your back, have some consideration giants.
- Pushing and trampling on people is not nice
- Feeling women up in a crowd is foul and an abomination and you should be publicly humiliated.
- Dance all you like, just not on my feet in cowboy boots (I’m talking to you Noel Fielding)
Have I come over all dictatory? Apologies, I’m just having a long overdue moan.