011 – Sacre Noir Summer Tour (Day Ten / Gig 4)

Posted: August 19, 2011 in Uncategorized

Monday 15th August 2011, London

Sacre Noir @ The Vibe Bar, Brick Lane

Sacre Noir @ The Vibe Bar, Brick Lane - 15th August 2011

The Vibe Bar is indeed a very nice venue! Huge courtyard & lovely inside bar too. I arrived @ 6pm (minus Alexis due to illness) got sound checked and then it was pretty much time for the fist act to come on. It’s a busy old night, with 10+ acts waiting to take to the stage and show the uber-cool Londoners what we’re all made off. I was really impressed with all the acts I met and realised very quickly that the talent in London is awesome! First up was the promoter Ian, playing some nice guitar vocal covers and getting the crowd warmed up for the rest of the evening. A young MC going by the moniker of ‘Breakfast’ was next up. A really confident performance and a few really catchy tracks too. Pretty old skool Hip-Hop vibes that obviously impressed that ladies; one young girl got up on stage during his performance to get a picture taken with him, despite the lyrics to his opening track being “I wanna be a player, I wanna be single all my life”…
Next up solo guitar / vocalist AC, who gave the audience a selection quite funny tracks and at one point asked whether we’d like him to finish with a song about the recent riots (Very quick work) or one about Lesbians. The crowd chose Lesbians!
Amber Room were up next and probably my favourite act of the evening. A guitar vocal duo, with really great songs and fabulous close harmonies. Their set was all great, but the track that stood out for me was their opening number “Sometimes”. They really reminded me of Fleetwood Mac and executed their tracks with great skill and competence. The audience were never in any doubt with this act and loved them from the word go.
Another guitar vocal duo were up next; Gabriel & Joss Edwards. Less confident with their material than the previous act (I think that was more to do with age & experience than skill), but they finished the set in style with a nice Jazzy / Bluesy number called “Outta Here” that showed of both Joss’ vocal stylings and Gabriel’s guitar skills. The pair also included in their set a cover of the theme tune from classic American TV show “The Littlest Hobo” – nice choice and again some lovely harmonies from these guys.
Earlier in the evening I had met the next act & chatted about Kaoss Pads etc They’ve come all the way from Toronto, Canada (not for this gig I don’t suppose) & this was their first every UK date.
They are Star (DJ friendly electronic-soul) and had discovered during their sound check that the adaptor for their Kaoss Pad had blown a fuse and so were going to be without the live effects for this gig. We tried the 2 different adaptors which I had but neither had the right connection. I felt really sorry for them and know how frustrating it can be when something goes wrong with equipment right before a gig, but like troopers they carried on regardless. The duo Rebekah (vocals) & Che (DJ) got through six tracks during their 20 minute set to showcase their newest release ‘Sonic’. I’d love to see them again live with all their gear working as I can imagine how much more ‘electro’ it would sound with live effects. Hopefully we’ll have them up to play Edinburgh whilst they’re still in the UK.
Remy Rousseau and Me (I think) were the next act to hit the stage. A young hip-hop duo with overtones of social conscience & educational vibes. Again, a really confident performance from these two young guys; loads of stage presence and confident delivery. I think when you’ve actually got something to say with your songs/lyrics it’s easier to convey your message to the audience, and these guys had plenty to say.
And then it was my turn. The first ever solo Sacre Noir performance…it went down really well. Got amazing feedback afterwards about the tracks and style of music; “Sounds just like Portishead” and “a lot like Garbage but darker” were my personal favourites. I spoke to loads of folk afterwards (collecting e-mail addresses for the mailing list) and seem to have made a decent impression on the locals. It was very strange being on stage on my own but I think it made me much more focused on the set and to be honest it passed by so quickly that there wasn’t really time for much to go wrong.
After my set there were a couple of ‘Open Mic’ acts and then a really great guitar / vocalist called Elliot. He was a bit Buckley-esque (Jeff not Tim), but as I was trying to pack up all my gear I didn’t really catch much of his chat or names of his tracks, but they were all good. And then finally just as I was leaving came the only full band of the evening and the only act I didn’t manage to catch.
Despite the hassle and stress of having to something (anything) on my own, I really enjoyed this gig. Great acts, great venue, great punters…all in all a really great night. A big thank you to Ian at Plugged In Switched On for having Sacre Noir on the bill. I can’t wait till the next time!

So that was this round of gigs in London, a few days off before we head to Paris next week and then we’ll be back for more on September 1st at The White Lion in Streatham (via Liverpool). I really love London, it’s a truly great city and can’t believe I had never been before now. There will be no more excuses and I shall be arranging some more gigs in this fine city as soon as we get back to Edinburgh.


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