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Gareth Moore, aka “Capn’ Sass,” our dancing correspondent from the Paris musical front-lines: APtBS @ Le Trabendo

Part Deux, Part 1 was DELPHIC

This was a strange night. This was a strange venue. This was a strange crowd.

To get to Le Trabendo, you must travel into the woods. A little creepy, but plenty cool. It’s when you finally enter the venue that everything turns upside down. Whoever designed this place was nuts. It seems to be an abstract rock venue. Its all angles, columns, bars, stairs, and confusion. One of the levels moves in a diagonal direction; standing on the left side you are close to the stage, but on the right side you are far away. There are only a few stairs to move from level to level, and they are not easy to find. I was not lucky enough to find them. I was casually walking and suddenly crashed into the floor. I may not be able to accurately describe this maddening place, but as I spoke to friends who have seen shows their they immediately understood my frustration.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eN0j5xItIPg

As I stood at the front, still annoyed by this venue, my spirit managed to be uplifted. Some people from the Delphic show recognized me and went into a state of shock. This was followed by the older man next to me wearing a New Model Army shirt (my earliest memories of existence features the music of NMA). I began to feel better.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e9xMFKtFjFg

Strangers hit the stage, turned on their lights, and the noise began. Many people kept their fingers in their ears for the entire show. For those who don’t know, this band puts on very loud shows (although if you’ve seen My Bloody Valentine and Einstürzende Neubauten it may seem quiet by comparison). They were as strong as the recent show I caught of theirs. The audience, however, seemed cold. The band gave a tremendous 1-2 punch of Ego Death and Keep Slipping Away (the wicked riff always reminds me of First Last & Always by Sisters of Mercy, but I seem to be the only one), yet the crowd remained still. One Slipping finished I concluded that if those songs couldn’t get them moving nothing would. The next song was Deadbeat and, almost instantly, the crowd engulfed me. From their on they proceeded to thrash around in wild abandon.

Surprisingly, some slow songs appeared. I still don’t recall them having any slow songs. The pace dragged for a bit, but they concluded with the thunderous I Live My Life To Stand In The Shadow Of Your Heart. I left after that song. There is no topping that one.

A good show, but one that left me with little to say. I was more impressed with them a few months ago when they opened for the Big Pink in Baltimore. Since they had a limited time frame they made every minute count. The bassist took out a power-drill and proceeded to use it as a guitar pick. They blew the Big Pink out of the water. Perhaps the venue just put me off. Maybe the band is stronger with shorter sets. I still recommend checking them out. But you may have less fun if you don’t know the songs. You can never here anything front-man Oliver sings. If you are a rocker at heart and would savour a sonic assault then, by all means, take this ride.

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