Thursday 9 January 2020

Gigs' Reviews : Austral Winter Gigs Part 3 : Maria Violenza, Les Morts Vont Bien, Jessica 93

Was the timing a pure coincidence ? Was it the Reunion uprising call for some dark wave’s sound ? Did the 1000 Balles Records and the Geneva Kakakids Records x planned the whole thing on purpose ? Wasn’t it simply a question of high quality and integrity of the worthy bands on these labels ? Whatever ! Three local gigs’ associations, without any close connexions - a garage, a punk/synth-punk and an electro one, invited three bands of the two structures in November  : Maria Violenza, Les Morts Vont Bien and Jessica 93. To the delight of those distinctive tribes, which had a perfect opportunity to stick together !

MARIA VIOLENZA’s Tour - from the 11/10 to 20/10/2019 - Reunion Island

Christiano Bergoglio, the guy in Mr Occhio, seems highly motivated to organize gigs on Reunion Island. A huge One-man-band garage festival in scheduled in the city of Le Port in February - stay tuned, the informations are coming very soon - and, with his brand new structure, Absürd Fest x - what an awesome name ! - he settled down a test tour for his Italian fellow one-woman-band Maria Violenza x.

They met in the mid-noughties, when Christina Cusimano, the girl in the band, get fully involved in the Italian connexion of La Grande Triple Alliance Internationale de l’Est. This federation of compulsory bands - the Normals, the Feeling Of Love, Scorpion Violente, Black Boy Georges, Delacave... just to name a few of them - was originally based in Eastern France (the Nancy, Metz and Strasbourg’s triple axes) and brought a huge blast in the French garage, psyche, noisy or weirdos sound, which made the heydays of great labels such as Yakisakana Records, Nasty Records, Roccoco Records...
They quickly established a strong link with the Roman scene : the Intellectuals, Motorama or Capputtini I Lignu, this one featuring Chritina

She came back in the mid-teenies with a solo project which has been smashing everything on its path : Maria Violenza. The sound ? Groovy electro-beat on the drum machines, loud gothic sounding organs’ riffs, minimalist guitar lines and side-drums heavy strikes, all of them being recorded, step by step, during her live sessions, and being set on continuous loops. When this dark synth-pop musical part has been set up, she goes for some punctuated, intimist and moody depressive lyrics with her aggressive, but melodious, voice and raps on a hip-hop way, alternating French, English and native speaking. An amazing blow!

She played five awesome shows with local opening bands (Mr Occhio of course, Kilkil and Tuelipe - the new starting project of Pascale Kilkil, we’ll surely talk later about this electro-pop one-woman-band) in the best pubs and small stages: l’Abordage, la Cerise, the JP’s Rondavelle, StudioTic, le Maloya’s boat party (this one was cancelled due to heavy waves) and the Ravine des Roques association’s home place.

Check her baroque music lately released on Kakakids Records : her Scirocco Lp, her awesome Moissure/Rap 7inch and her split single with Usé.

LES MORTS VONT BIEN’s Tour - from the 30/10 to the 08/10 - Reunion Island

Perfect transition !! You know, Usé was that guy, Nicolas Edouard,  from Picardy who played during the 2019 Rock à La Buse festival, as a one-man-band, an impressive electro/punk/indus show with many touches of Northern France cabaret and weirdos sound.
He was back on the island with Carine Edouard, to introduce his duo band Les Morts Vont Bien x and they play three shows during a short local tour, with the help of the un-restless organizers of Maudit Tangue Records.

A really stressful dead-end atmosphere surrounded their dark wave disturbing show : a binary indus beat on the side drums, a minimalist gothic play on the organs, harrowing piercing experimental guitar riffs, a cold chanting voice enhanced by the French or German (Das Leben ist so schwarz!) speaking lyrics of the girly singer and outer-grave yelling choirs, confusing electro-transe sound, degenerated tribal tempo and dark waves… Such tremendous shows !

A really interesting and almost unlimited musical worl gravitates around this Amiens’ band : Usé, Headwar, La Race..., heavily supported by great labels (Label Brique Records, Et Mon Cul, C’est du Tofu ? Records, 1000 Balles Records or the young Kakakids Records…) and inter-connected with lots of bands into noisy, indus, electro-punk, synth-pop, no wave, dark wave trips.

They played two tremendous shows, with the support of Kilkil or Tuelipe, at le Zinc and la Cerise and ended up with a last minute open-air one on the Skatepark of La Saline-les-Bains with their mate Jessica 974’s (!!).

JESSICA 93 - 07/10/209 - Skatepark, La Saline-les-Bains - Reunion Island

Damned ! This date had been marked on the diary for monthes ! But some job’s imperatives made me missed this unique local date : a Jessica 93’ live performance happening on a stricto sensu wavy cruise of the classy Maloya catamaran. 
In December, a local electro event mixing techno, electro and world music, les Electrodocks, occurred  with the partnership of the public funds' place Le Kabardock. Before launching the main part of their event, they invited Geoffroy Laporte to play this opening exclusive one-shot show of Jessica 93 x on a boat. 
But luckely for me, some local pirates organized a last minute DIY show the next day in La Saline-les-Bains and the band played under the name of Jessica 974 (974 is the postal code for Reunion Island).

Jessica 93 may be a 4-pieces band as well as a solo project of the guy. As for any one-man-bands playing electro stuffs, he uses a drum machine for the beat and some live-recorded loops on the guitar. As soon as the arrangements were fully placed, this accursed-poet-looking-like played awesome lines of bass and sang troubled lyrics with a doomed voice. The vibrant sound, at the crossroad of depressed independent rock, electro-pop, grunge, noise and shoegaze was greatly gloomy. A catchy effect for sure, and kind of a weird miss-match with the happy families and the jovial teenagers’ atmosphere that floated on the skate spot.

A few last words to mention the connexion between Jessica 93 and all the previous named bands via all those labels , without forgetting Teenage Menopause Records x. All these bands and records should be prescribed as a medical treatment to fight against hypertension and happiness ! ;-)

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