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|Vive La Fete||Amsterdam||Netherlands||8.0||2005-06-04||#|
|DJ Luna: One Man Show||Arnhem||Netherlands||7.0||2005-05-26||#|
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VIVE LA FETE
Belgium act Vive La Fete, translates into English as "Long Live The Party". This is their manifesto to us the audience and to you the listeners. The group was formed in the late 1990's by guitarist/vocalist DANNY MOMMENS (ex-bassist of dEUS) and lanky blonde lead vocalist ELS PYNOO. Touring they add three more members, including bassist; Ben Brunin, keyboardist; Marc Requilé, who wore a messy black haired wig which made him look as if he was a reject of THE RAMONES and lastly drummer; Jan D'Hooghe who sported a boyishly charming hair-doo and slightly resembled Batman's naive sidekick ROBIN. The boys all wore black makeup eye masks and black clothing.
Miss Pynoo's was the center of everyone's attention. She wore a giant round golden sun/rose with hot pants, fish net stockings and high-heeled red leather boots. She moved with the gracefulness of a dancer, rhythmically whipping her bleached blonde haired head all around. She was irresistible to not watch and oozed sexuality and playfulness, something I think inherent in all French women.
Vive La Fete is now touring with an arsenal of four albums under their belt. With the release of their last album Grand Prix it's obvious that they have now developed quite a cult "fashion" following. This is partially due to celebrity fans and performances at Karl Lagerfeld's runway shows. My friend, who came with me to the show, also happens to be a hair and makeup stylist. She recognized nearly half the audience from the Amsterdam fashion scene.
The Melkweg was packed, but in a friendly lighthearted way. It was hot and steamy and the more the crowd jumped around and shouted the hotter it got. I hardly minded when three ladies pushed their way into a small opening next to me and one of them began swinging her ponytail in my face. At a rock show I probably would have thrown an elbow her way but I refrained. We danced and gazed in admiration of the five fun-loving French Belgiums on stage.
As the show progressed their makeup eye mask ran down their faces giving them a more sinister look. Regardless of this the members of Vive La Fete were smiling and giggling the whole show. Adoring their fans that adored them back.
I have to say that musically I was not impressed, I mean, it's not like anything I haven't heard. They make music that I would best describe as trashy 80's synth pop like Visage, with moments of Kraftwerk mixed with the dirty more industrial sound of Death in Vegas. I also couldn't help but pick up on the fact that many of their songs sounded like direct rips offs of other known pop hits. However their live performance on stage made up for anything that was lacking musically for me. Vive La Fete is fabulously terrible.
Mid way through the set there was a short break where Danny Mommens was left on stage alone to go off on a rock-ego trip. It was absolutely comical which brought lightness to the fact that it was such shit. He was mumbling the words to "Wild One" mixed with the wailing ohhhh-ohhhh-ohhh-ooooooos from the chorus of "Ca Plane Pour Moi" (1983 sung by Plastic Bertand, due to that one hit, he is maybe the most famous Belgium pop singer). I actually recognized it as "Jet Boy, Jet Girl" from The Damned.
They ended their set with audience participation part, which is always a good and easy laugh. Three members of the audience were pulled on stage. Danny Mommens conducted the girl to play guitar and another girl and a guy to yell and scream into the microphone.
They played mostly songs from their newest album GRAND PRIX, "Assez", "Petite Putan", "Nuit Blanche", "2005" and "Touche Pas". I think however my favorite song was 80's euro anthem "Machine Sublime". They also did a song, which consisted mostly of Miss Pynoo's screaming as if she was in a 1950's monster movie and aliens had just taking over the world. It was fabulous, brilliant and horrify all at once.
Vive La Fete is a trashy electro French Belgium circus that I highly recommend checking out live! Merci en Vive La Fete!
|Zoe Gottehrer (USA/NL) (2005-06-04)
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