Uncover presents: Le Couleur and Disco Soup DJs at The Firefly, Worcester, Friday 11th March 2022
I’m visiting my parents on Sunday, which is tomorrow if you like articles that feel like they capture a particular moment. However, something amazing happened last night when Le Couleur came to town (Yes, Friday…Well done for keeping up, and yes it took a few weeks for the article to get published, so that’s a few Fridays ago, now).
It’s a familiar tale, many people (Mum and Dad included) have become stuck in the psychology of lockdown, gaging people they get close to, by the irresponsibility of their social distancing. What I can’t tell them (couldn’t) (tomorrow… but a few Sundays ago), is how packed the Firefly was that night, and how everyone present relished the lost era of gigs where you got up mega close, mega sweaty and mega personal.
The six piece band itself, the Disco Soup DJ crew (and their huge family) a tour manager, the sound guys, a couple of PR people, and a manned merch table were already in place. This didn’t leave a huge amount of room for the wonderful punters of Worcestershire, so sadly for my parents, social distancing had fast become nestling deeply in social bosom.
In the midst of this packed bout of the most extraordinary exotic live disco funk groves imaginable, ‘we the punters’ had an epiphany… God’s actual mirrorball rays hypnotised us back into the joy and bodily secretion of intimate gigs. We rediscovered the art of looking round tall people, without treading on small people’s toes or eating people’s long hair. Avoiding armpit whiffs whilst trying to dance and carry drinks.
Furthermore, we felt so blessed that Le Couleur, managed to squeeze ‘lil old Worcester into a mini tour of ‘proper’ cities. (London, Paris, Manchester…Worcester – it has a ring to it.). They brought with them, their super-slick live French-Canadian disco. Acoustic electronica meets international percussion-funk with a hint of psychedelic glamour…. oh and lots of chiffon!
The chiffon came in the form of Vietnamese-Canadian lead singer Laurence Giroux-Do. She literally deployed a shawl made of it as her main stage prop, draped over her PVC jump suit, acrobatically catching the disco lights with it to spread her infectious French pop vocal energy. Faithfull, Harry, Gainsbourg, whatever Florence’s second name is, she was all of these.
The rest of the band brought a professionalism and cool exoticism we don’t normally see just opposite the kebab shop in Lowesmoor. Patrick Gosselin (guitar) and Steeven Chouinard (Drums) Philippe Beaudin (percussions), Sheenah (synths) and JC (guitar) were as tight as a gnats thingy, looked like they’d stepped out of a Roxy Music video, and committed us all to ‘Extreme Disco Mode’ from minute one.
Set list went like this. The one-word title style of the sharpie sheet they handed me (not the full song titles) keeps my word count down but messes up the spell check, as they are mainly ‘foreign’ words. Sadly my French is not adequate enough to give you much in the way of lyrical comprehension either, so musical descriptions only.
Vol de l’Après Midi (afternoon flight) – Exotic slow funky build to set the tone and loosen up. Chiffon-a-flowing
Train de Minuit (midnight train)– Giorgio Moroder influenced disco with live percussion, not yet full tilt.
Silhouette – Jangly guitar and poppy with a cool psychedelic synth breakdown.
Silenzio – Poppy. One of a few tracks from their latest (Deluxe reissued) Album, Concorde.
Underage – More electronic and lush vocoded vocals from Giroux Do.
Simple Vol – Proving that disco can be eighties new wave too, steady but hypnotic.
Eclat – The tempo is up, the synths are firing and the audio samples drop in
Femme – The pop hit standout from 2013. Shoegazey, retro and rich in narrative
Désert – Sophisticated breakdowns, middle eights. Disco groove now swinging again.
Concorde – Slower, spacier and funkier with wide vibrato guitars, and chilled middle bits
L’amour – 80s Disco. Catchy groove with housey piano. The standout from 2016 LP, P.O.P.
La Fruite de Barbara (Barbara’s fruit) – Long play psycho-disco, chance for band to run solos/play guitars behind heads.
Voyage Amoureux (Voyage Love) – Uplifting standing on drumkits at the end material. Audience in palm of hands.
By the end everyone was both exhausted and exhilarated, including the band who continued to throw shapes on the dancefloor to the sounds of the Disco Soup DJs long after their own set was finished. Reportedly, they loved the Firefly gig so much that Worcester has now found a fond place in their hearts, which bodes well for a return visit. Respect and thanks to the Firefly and Disco Soup, but let’s secretly hope for a bigger venue next time, perhaps even still pushing the capacity limits as safely as we can, pandemic or not.
The full show is also on YouTube thanks to King Dave. Enjoy safely with your mums and dads.