Concert Review: Revolver, Chateau Marmont, October 16, The Horseshoe Tavern

Toronto – As I walked into The Horseshoe shortly before Chateau Marmontstarted their set, I couldn’t help but notice the sparse turnout.  Not that I expected anything different – two French bands who are not exactly household names playing on a Sunday night while at the same time, Dum Dum Girls were playing Lee’s Palace, Trentemoller were playing The Phoenix, and of course, for those who’d rather watch TV, the second season premiere of The Walking Dead was on as well.  But as they say, the show must go on, and go on it did.

Chateau Marmont started things off, playing to a small crowd of probably 20 people but sounding great.  Singer/keyboardist Guillaume De Maria introduced one song by describing it as “Very erotic … like floating in the air naked.”  That’s as apt a description as I can think of.  Overall, they’ve got an interesting sound, a mix of electronic instrumentals and nice poppy tunes.  And when I say electronic, I mean it often veers a lot closer to stuff like Tangerine Dream than any more modern electro sounds.  that is, spacey, trippy and sounding kind of like the soundtrack of some early ’80s movie.  There’s also a hint of their countrymen Air in their sound.  Pretty impressive stuff.  Hopefully next time they come through town they play to a larger crowd.

Chateau Marmont – Beagle by SWAG Blog

As headliners Revolvercame to the stage, they fared a bit better (there were probably 30 or so in the crowd at this point) and did a good job of persuading the audience to come closer.  They had a good sound, somewhat reminiscent of ’60s pop/rock (it’s likely no coincidence that they’re names after a Beatles album).  They showed off some good Crosby, Stills and Nash style harmonies throughout their set and even ended off with an unplugged encore of CSN’s “Helplessly Hoping” in front of the stage that was probably the highlight of their set.  They also threw in a peppy cover of M. Ward’s “Chinese Translation” during their main set.  Probably the most interesting moment came during their song “Get Around Town,” which to me sounded a bit like a hybrid of The Beta Band and Stray Cats.  Towards the end of that song, they decided it was time to invite local rapper More Or Les (although when the band introduced him, it sounded like MC Morales or MC Moralist with that French accent) onstage to freestyle  with them for a few minutes.  The band clearly seemed to be enjoying that moment, with singer Ambroise Willaume even musing at one point that they were thinking of changing their musical direction.  While I enjoyed Chateau Marmont  a bit more, both bands offered up solid sets that made it worth going out on a Sunday night.

Posted on by Paul in Concerts