Archive for the ‘Sacre Noir’ Category

Sacre Noir Rebels & Loners Tour Summer Tour 2017
Saturday 22nd July 2017
Rebels & Loners launch Party, Bannerman’s Bar, Edinburgh
+ Very special guests CaveYear & Heart of Orion
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Back in May 2017 we filmed what is set to be the final official Sacre Noir music video for Rebels & Loners (taken from the LP Nothing Falls Apart: Savage Recordings 2016) over a couple of weekends in Dunfermline & Edinburgh.
On Saturday night we held a party at Bannerman’s Bar in Edinburgh to celebrate our final release.

First up on the evening was local electronica act CaveYear. Clinical delivery of clean sounds his set is often ethereal sounding and incredibly ‘cool’. I last saw Arno live last year at our last launch night (A Rhythm Between Work & Sleep @ The Safari Lounge) and his set has developed more of an avant-pop edge, moving away from the shoegaze sounds and indie stylings.
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To be kept up-to-date and receive a FREE track you can sign up to the CaveYear mailing list here.

Next up was American electro-pop duo Heart of Orion. European synth sounds and crispy disco style beats backed up Danielle’s powerful vocal delivery and poignant lyrics. They are only in the UK for a few shows and I was so glad that we were able to have them support us in Edinburgh.
They are playing at The Fiddler’s Elbow on July 31st so if you’re in London looking for a fun Monday night gig – check them out!
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After that we played all 6 videos finishing up with the launch of Rebels and Loners, before our headline set for the evening.
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It was an emotional night; many tears, lots of hugs and memories and a fair amount of booze and much dancing / singing was the order of the evening.
Bringing the talents of stylist Erin Culley into the team for one last shoot, we also recruited models / actresses Lyndsey B (who has featured in each of our 6 official video releases) and Emma T (who allowed us to feature her beautiful daughter in this video too) as well as young actress Aimie M (whose mum Lorraine was our assistant stylist for this shoot) and the wonderfully talented dancer Lisa Richie.
We also worked with a fantastic young dance troupe who are based at The Alhambra Stage And Dance School and their choreographer Lauren Brown.

Musically delicate with lyrics that focus on dealing with personal difficulties; loss, depression and anxiety, this minimalist slice of down-tempo electronica is a fitting goodbye from Sacre Noir. There is a background focus within the lyrics which looks at the fear of memory loss and the difficulties of thinking, problem-solving or communication that come with Alzheimer’s disease.

Inspired by stories from those directly affected by these issues, the accompanying video leans on visual metaphors to ask, “what if there are no more goodbyes”? We were keen to drive forward our final visual work using ideas of unconsciousness and dream interpretations as is common with David Lynch’s work. The dark and mysterious films we create communicate draw upon these concepts with a modern clinical approach to discussing psychological issues, especially those around psychosis.  As Alzheimer’s progresses, problems with memory loss, communication, reasoning and orientation become more severe. Some people start to believe things that are untrue (delusions) and can see or hear things which are not actually there (hallucinations), similar to those who suffer with schizophrenia and psychosis.

People are like balloons – sometimes they pop.
Balloons pop because the air on the inside is at a higher pressure than the air on the outside; it’s skin is pulling inwards like and elastic tension.
I think sometimes we can all feel like were about to burst – the world around us brings stress and fear and uncertainty to all and the pressure can often feel like it’s too much.
In many circles balloons symbolize letting go of your worries & fears; the balloon is a focused mental state. White balloons can indicate a time of spiritual enlightenment while the black balloon is a suggestion that through hardship and depression will come a better resolution.

With the recent suicidal deaths from within our industry (Chris Cornell and Chester Bennington) there is an increased call for all areas to increase awareness surrounding mental health issues and a hope that those who feel they have nowhere else to turn will find very clear signs pointing to those who are able to offer support & comfort, if nothing else.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7wi3DjmsTko

Sunday 23rd July 2017
Brunch @ Art and Vintage, Edinburgh
Last full day in Edinburgh before heading off on tour was spent as always finishing off the merchandise preparation and tour promotion, however we did find time to pop into our favourite brunch spot in Edinburgh for a coffee and a little quiet time to gather our thoughts (and finalise the kitty-sitting rota for summer).
Welcomed by the patrons Paul and Toni (who are good friends) we settled into the comfy seats with coffees in hand and remembered to breathe; filled in some bullet journal boxes, avoided buying any of the art (a new exhibition has just started and it included some interesting pieces) and started to reflect on the previous evening’s show / look forward to tomorrow’s journey south.

Monday 24th July 2017
London part 1
This time last year we were arriving back in Edinburgh having just finished our 2016 tour – a year later we’ve only just begun.
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We were pleased to have arranged an afternoon departing train to London this year as usually we end up getting cheap tickets which involves the early trains / planes but today we had loads of time to get ready and spend some extra time with the kitty before heading off for 3 weeks of gigs and promotional activities.

As our set-up is vastly reduced this year (acoustic guitar, KP3+ and VE-20 loop pedal plus mics only this year) we seem to be travelling light and getting around London feels much easier than previous years.

We had no problems with transport at all – Waverley to Euston, then across the city to our hotel in Earl’s Court (an area we fell in love with last year) before heading out for something to eat and an early night, ready to take London by storm the next day.

We decided on Franco Manca for our first meal in London this year; organic pizza and fancy juices… just what the travel doctor ordered.

COMING UP
27TH JULY NXI presents Red Tape Riot live at The New Cross Inn
29TH JULY BugBear Promotions presents JD Kelleher live at The Dublin Castle
 

Friday 7th July 2017: Gig 1: Sketchy Beats Cafe, Edinburgh
Thursday 12th July 2017: Secret Gig: video preview party, Dunfermline

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Summer has arrived and we have a brand new video to share with you all soon.
We’re all booked up with summer shows in Paris and London, and have even booked in a couple of shows at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

First show of this year’s summer season was at Sketchy Beats Cafe’s The Hip Hop House; a great run by WERD (SOS) on two levels.
Downstairs there is hip-hop sets and battles whilst upstairs it is live bands & singer-songwriter sessions… we were on upstairs and played a low-key guitar/vocal set featuring a new cover we’ve been working on recently.
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It’s always a great night with a wide range of acts, all in support of the community run space in Leith, Edinburgh.
Hayley G (Devils in Skirts) were also playing and they provided the wee PA, mixer, mic stands etc.
We only managed to see a wee bit of their set (as we were both busy the next day with boring work stuff and aimed to catch the last bus home), but they were  sounding tight and as always the crowd were loving their set.

Then after a couple of days sorting out tracks for the aways shows we found time to rehearse with guitarist Phil at ColorSound studios.
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Finally, we took a trip over to Dunfermline to have a little preview party / gig for the under 18’s who’ve been involved with the new video.
A good friend and promoter (Cob) helped with the venue, PA / lights etc. and the kids brought friends and family along to check out their work.
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5 of our under 18’s are the ASDS senior dance troupe who we filmed for way back at the start of May ’17.
The other two are fantastic young actresses & models who are friends of the SN family.

We had a lovely evening sharing the video as well as some behind the scenes footage and images. We also played a wee live gig for the kids which they seemed to enjoy and think we may have made a few new fans in their parents too.

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UP NEXT:
At the end of May we spent some time finishing the filming for our final music video and we’re having the launch party at Bannerman’s Bar, Edinburgh on Saturday 22nd July 2017 with very special guests Heart Of Orion (USA) and CaveYear (Edinburgh). `

Sacre Noir / Heart of Orion / CaveYear – Event Link

They say never meet your heroes (or heroines) but in June we did just that and could not have had a better time if we were trying.
Chrysta Bell arrived in Edinburgh for two nights at The Voodoo Rooms as part of her ‘We Dissolve’ tour and Sacre Noir were honoured to be the support act for both shows.

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For those who don’t already know Chrysta Bell, let me introduce you to the most enigmatic lady I’ve ever met.
Having spent the last 17 years working closely with David Lynch (a huge inspiration for everything we do with Sacre Noir), Chrysta Bell and her band are now promoting a new LP filled with lo-fi lush soundscapes, polished musicianship and stunning vocals.

“As background atmospheric sounds play through the PA, Bell takes to the stage, tall, elegant and mysterious. Immediately, she holds the attention of the audience. Some singers have excellent technical voices, while some performers have real presence. Bell combines both, in one, gorgeous package.” – Kenny Mathieson @ http://theweereview.com/review/chrysta-bell/

The Voodoo Rooms is a beautiful venue in the heart of Edinburgh (just off Princes Street), and although we have played in their smaller Speakeasy venue a few times in a previous musical life (Guantanmo Bay band circa 2006), we have never had the pleasure of playing in their main ballroom before.
“Lavishly decorated in blacks, golds and reds, The Voodoo Rooms is making the most of the neo-burlesque and retro chic movements currently in vogue and attracts a young and hip clientele as a result.” – Edinburgh Spotlight (2009-17)

As this was a really important gig for us, our friends and collaborators came out to support.
On both evenings Erin Culley re-created the make-up/styling from our forth-coming video. There are 2 looks in the new video ‘Rebels & Loners’, one pure and the other dark… we went for the striking black scatter eye with long vintage gown and black feather cape.

#SNY was also on hand both evenings to  provide some video / photo / social media support. As always it was a joy working with him (and great to catch up after his recent succesful debut exhibition of portrait photography).
He really a fantastically creative individual, who we are extremely lucky to count amongst our friends and supporters. Responsible for our Listen To Me video & promotional images for 2015, he set up our first ever Sacre Noir Facebook Live videos (some of these may have been about chips… I did say he was ‘individual’ and that’s why we love him!) and too some captured some fab images during both evenings.

We treated these gigs as our own ‘pre-tour warm up’ shows and tried out the new duo set-up (acoustic guitar, loop vocals with the Boss VE-20 and samples / fx from the Korg Kaoss Pad 3+).
You can check out a live video from the set on our YouTube channel.
YouTube_Print Message Here live @ The Voodoo Rooms

The audience on both evenings were very positive and the feedback was lovely. Most common comment was “the electronic stuff was really cool”… so I think we’ll add a few more looped tracks to the set for some of the London & Paris shows.

Chrysta’s set on both evenings was inspirational.
The band are super talented (Jon Sanchez – guitar, Christopher Smart – bass / theremin, Jayson Altman – drums) and apparently just finding their feet with their live show (I’d love to see what their version of perfection is if it’s not the show they gave us in Edinburgh).
We were treated to tracks from both previous LPs written and recorded with David Lynch (This Train & Somewhere In The Nowhere) as well as tracks from her brand new LP (We Dissolve) and even an unreleased track called “Undertow” – think Wicked Game with lush female vocals and a bit of a sultry beat.

The new LP ‘We Dissolve’ has been produced by John Parish who is known for his work with PJ Harvey & features Adrian Utley of Portishead & Stephen O’Malley from Sunn O))), so you can see why we were keen to pay attention during these shows; we’re always learning ‘on the job’ and this was a show where I feel I learned a lot!
Stagecraft, live production, style and songwriting, set delivery and so much more; it really was a masterclass as far as I’m concerned & I feel honoured to have been part of these very special nights.
I think one of my favourite tracks was “Monday”: here’s a link to her playing it live exactly 1 month after her 2nd night at The Voodoo Rooms.

These will be nights that will live long in our memories – #catchingthebigfish

SIDE NOTE: Chrysta Bell’s website is beautiful and well worth checking out

Sacre Noir & Chrysta Bell

 

 

Leaving Paris
We didn’t have to be at CDG Airport until after 3pm, so we had one final morning (after packing) to enjoy Paris. We started off at Café Martin for one last coffee before grabbing some sandwiches and cakes and heading to out to another local park, Le square Édouard-Vaillant. This is the closest green space to the apartment and despite being fairly small, it has a kids play area, a bandstand at its centre plus some greenhouses and a statue of Léon Gambetta (a French statesman, prominent during and after the Franco-Prussian War).

lunch in the park

lunch in the park

We ate our lunch and watched as the Parisians as they went about their daily business. The park is located between the Town Hall of the 20th arrondissement and the Hôpital Tenon so it’s a fairly busy area. There always seems to be time for cake in Paris and we weren’t the only people in the park that were indulging in this past time.

“there’s always time for cake in Paris”

We arrived at the airport with plenty of time to spare, checked in, dropped off the oversized luggage and made it through security (only losing a couple of items from my suitcase of leads, microphones and other electrical equipment). Then after explaining that there was nothing wrong with my eye, we waited for the flight to board.

at CDG airport, leaving Paris

at CDG airport, leaving Paris

That was it; our petit tour estival was over and tomorrow we were going to be hosting a preview party at New Hellfire Club, Glasgow for our new music video.

Listen To Me: preview party at NHC, Glasgow

Listen To Me: preview party at NHC, Glasgow

Concert at La Dame de Canton, Paris (with AsOne)
This was our last full day in Paris for this trip and tonight we return to La Dame de Canton for a show with our favourite French band – AsOne.
Before that there was time to visit markets, wander streets, drink coffee, sit in parks and eat some lunch. We also found time to do some promotion for the show whilst spotting some great street art & funny menus (seriously).

Chip Butty (seriously)

Chip Butty (seriously) – The Sunken Chip

After what turned out to be quite a busy day, we got ourselves together for the show. Packing ourselves and the equipment into the tiny lift in our building was the first challenge, but that was pretty much the only challenge of the evening.

Sign at La Dame de Canton

Sign at La Dame de Canton

Jumping on the METRO at Gambetta, changing at Nation (the area we stayed in last summer) and finally arriving at Quai de la Gare in under 30 minutes all seemed too easy. We arrived at the venue (an old Chinese junk boat which is moored in the Seine) and AsOne were already there, getting up & getting ready to sound check.

AsOne sound check at La Dame de Canton, Paris

AsOne sound check at La Dame de Canton, Paris

It was great to see them all again – they really are a great bunch of musicians and lovely people to hang out with too. They’ve been taking some time out since last year to write & record new AsOne material (which I can’t wait to hear), Chloe has her solo project & Miam (her cabaret duo project) and Damien has recently started a new project too, so this alongside family life and work commitments I’m amazed they found time to do anything together. Playing shows with bands where there are 4+ members reminds me how easy we have it with the Sacre Noir set up. There are 6 members of AsOne and I can’t even begin to imagine how difficult that must be to organise. However, as they sound checked I started to remember just why I love this band so much and was just thankful that they do manage to organise themselves.
Our sound engineer for the evening, Romain, was great! He was just back from touring with IGIT (French Folky, Bluesy singer / songwriter who fuses electronics & loops to offer a modern Tom Waits style setting for his distinctive voice) and made everything seem very simple. He was friendly and relaxed and patient with our stilted French. The team at La Dame de Canton have been truly great to work with; incredibly supportive and professional from start to finish, we love working with people like this.

Sacre Noir live at La Dame de Canton, Paris (photo by Chacal Fréville)

Sacre Noir live at La Dame de Canton, Paris (photo by Chacal Fréville)

It was a great night. We ate, drank, played and danced, enjoyed the music and company and when time came to go ‘home’, we left knowing that this wont be the last time we meet with AsOne. There is a definite connection between the two acts and maybe one day we’ll even tempt them over to the UK to play some concerts here.

AsOne / Sacre Noir - Paris July 2015

AsOne / Sacre Noir – Paris July 2015

We gratefully accepted a life home to Gambetta with all the equipment from Roberto (AsOne collaborator & poet / musician). As we drove through the city in the early hours of the morning, the street lights sparkled, the bars and late-night cafes began to close and the bakers started work at the Boulangerie et Patisserie.

The evening ended with the discovery that my left eye had become blood-shot (like seriously). . . too much sun is what Google told me was the most likely cause.
So off to bed for one last time in this fantastic city as tomorrow we head home to another.

Concert at Le Gambetta Club, Paris

For our first show in Paris this summer we booked a couple of local Paris bands & contacted one of the promoters we knew who runs the live music in a great little venue in the 20th Arr. The club is just 10 minutes walk from our apartment so we had all day to enjoy the city before we headed out to set up and sound check. The sun was shining so we decided on a trip to our favourite park; Buttes Chaumont.

Buttes Chaumont

The sets from Appalache & Mettani were outstanding – both so different & full of musical energy.
The first band up was Appalache, a Post-Blues / Psych-Rock duo based in Paris. These guys have an amazing energy and their performance was as ‘full-on’ as their tracks; Julien (guitar, vox) must have lost a couple of stone in sweat alone. They powered through their 40-minute set in style & had the crowd eating out of the palm of their hands. Their performance reminded me of the YYY’s live show – full on driving rhythms from start to finish.

Appalache at Le Gambetta Club, Paris

The reaction from the crowd during our set was great. One of our new French friends (who happens to be a very good friend of a friend from back home in Edinburgh) took some great photos and a few videos for us too. There were no hiccups at all (which is very unusual for any show we play, usually something odd happens) and afterwards the feedback was just as complimentary. There were a lot of musicians in the bar drinking & enjoying the live music, so we got the feeling that this was our type of crowd.

Sacre Noir at Le Gambetta Club, Paris

Finally Mettani took to the stage with Ghoula offering additional live instrumentation. These guys are more used to playing in nightclubs and really relished the opportunity to break into the live music circuit rather than the club scene here in Paris. Musically it was really interesting and I think the fact the audience could see how they were manipulating their sounds and utilizing the live instruments alongside the sequencing & looping packages generated a real curiosity from the crowd. They turned up with a bunch a friends / family all wearing ‘Arabstazy’ t-shirts. This sparked my curiosity…
Arabstazy began as a set of concerts held by the ethno-electro musical label Shouka, and featuring artists originating from the Arab World, or making a singular use of its legacy. Each show is considered like an adorcist transe ritual, where the audience is invited to experience voluntary, desired and curative possessions. Arabstazy is now established as a collective of musicians and visual artists wanting to promote the underground electronic arabic scene. Tired of the dripping orientalism brought by the mainstream scene, they wish to offer shows introducing sharp artists and original performances.” (http://arabstazy.net)

Mettani at Le Gambetta Club, Paris

Their music certainly had elements of Arabic culture (live percussion instruments like brass maracas), but for me it wasn’t so trance-like or ritualistic. In fact their set brought a mellow organic sound to the evening, which seemed to embrace many cultures and musical styles; their use of a Tumbi & melodica reinforced this ‘multi-culturalism’ for me.

We’d like to say a very special thank-you to Stephanie (booker), Jo (boss) and the staff at Le Gambetta Club, for having us play at their venue. . . we loved the bar, so may be back again soon for another show.

NEXT GIG:                 Thursday 23rd July 2015 @ La Dame De Canton with AsOne
https://www.facebook.com/events/615218981926641/

Friday 22nd August – Elvis Shakespeare, Edinburgh
Rounding up to the tour we decided to play a show at our favourite record shop in Edinburgh – Elvis Shakespeare on the last Friday of this year’s Fringe. Elvis Shakespeare have always been very supportive; both Michael & Dave are always positive with local bands and were very open to having our friends from Paris play in store too.

Last show of the tour @ Elvis Shakespeare, Edinburgh

Last show of the tour @ Elvis Shakespeare, Edinburgh


Thanks to everyone who came along and to Michelle & Victor for coming all the way from Paris and sharing their music with us.
Michelle Blades @ Elvis Shakespeare, Edinburgh

Michelle Blades @ Elvis Shakespeare, Edinburgh


AlexisSs @ Elvis Shakespeare, Edinburgh

AlexisSs @ Elvis Shakespeare, Edinburgh


What started as a lovely day weather wise (we took Michelle & Victor for a walk up Arthur’s Seat), soon descended into a grey afternoon with heavy rain showers so after the show we headed home. Typical Edinburgh weather meant that before too long the rain had cleared to we went for a walk to Portobello before heading home again to have some food and watch the BBC documentary ‘Kate Bush – Running Up That Hill’ which was great!
Michelle & Victor at Portobello Beach, Edinburgh

Michelle & Victor at Portobello Beach, Edinburgh