Guest article by Mark E. Thompson of Gigs in Paris
The Christmas gig slump is as traditional as mulled wine and mince pies. The airwaves are paved with cheese, the shops with demanding toddlers, and any band worth their salt is “driving home for Christmas” (apologies).
However, there are a few hidden treasures to be had. On Friday, Club Folamour will be taking over Point Ephémère, with a sterling indie-electro line up till the early hours. Highlights include Small Black, Lo-fi-fnk, and Museum of Bella Artes.
Further north, White Lies are heading a strong British night at la Fleche D’or with iLike Trains and The Vaccines. But, it’s another British act which is offering perhaps the most intriguing prospect this weekend. The already pretty pretentious Essex lads, These New Puritans, have teamed up with German composer André de Ridder, best known for his work with the Gorrilaz, to create a post-apocalyptic show piece. Backed by a 15-piece brass and woodwind ensemble, multiple pianos, Japanese drums, a children’s choir and an orchestra, the guys are undoubtedly looking to turn the Pompidou inside out…
If you’ve spent all your pocket change on that animal print jumper your mate’s just always wanted, then head yourself down to L’International to catch the free Rrose Tacet set on Sunday. At the other end of the price bracket there’s Soulwaxmas, a night which really didn’t need to promote itself on every other metro billboard in town. 2Many Dj’s and Erol Alkan already carry hefty weight around these parts, and if you can afford yourself a ticket, it’s sure to be a belter. Sadly, I leave for the white walls of St Pancras Station that morning, but with a send off no less impressive. Soul legend and The Roots collaborator, Cody ChestnuTT, will be crooning the crowd at La Bellevilloise and, I hope, giving me a protective shield to ward off the impending, inevitable Cliff Richard onslaught that awaits in my motherland.
Mark E. Thompson is a freelance journalist and former music writer for the BBC, The Sun, and CNN Online. Now living and working in Paris, he decided to cover the city’s indie/alternative music scene in his new blog called Gigs in Paris. Check out his site for detailed concert calendars month by month, and interesting articles (the latest one is on Sam Amidon). For all of you regular Secrets of Paris readers, don’t be alarmed by the extra consonants; he writes in UK English.