Kicking off the night’s festivities to a crowd of down-trodden, rain-sodden Parisians and the likes, is an acoustic set from local boys, Blue Birds’ Call. Setting a perfect ambiance amongst the pint-clutchers of Paris’ Le Metro with their ambient prog-rock – which was tonight gracefully stripped back to two guitars, one acoustic, one electric, and vocals – eerie melodies filled the room as singer (and self-proclaimed Chuck Bass lookalike) Alexis Cordier crooned in perfect English*(*they’re French, if you didn’t get that) with a range of vocal acrobats. Much befitted to the bassy chords of the acoustic, and the high pitched electric twangs of the instruments, Alexis impressively skips from high to low with as much ease it takes the audience to listen to him.

Then who should walk into the bar but Mike Bruno and Megan Biscieglia (Bad Braids), looking somewhat aghast at having just dealt with Bastille’s near-impossible maze of trendy record shop after trendy clothes shop, before finding the venue. No sooner had the crowd refreshed their now-empty glasses and nicotine-starved lungs than Mike Bruno had taken to the stage and begun strumming into his Earthy, also acoustic, set with a series of sincere, heartfelt songs. Though easily falling into the folk bracket, Bruno delivers a fresh sound to the classic genre as he thanks us, and does a quick death-or-glory merchandising plug before parting the stage.

An equally seamless set change presents us with the final act of the night in the shape of Bad Braids who is, too, on the acoustic bandwagon but picks up the pace a little with her dream-like tales of heartache. With underlays of soul and infectious, slightly metronomic beats giving an extra punch to her tunes, Bad Braids has a distinct and proud approach to her Liz Greenesque way with music, and sweetly “merci“s her way through applause and cheering between each song.

The evening draws to a close as Blue Birds’ Call’s synth/percussion player hits the DJ decks and spins what is rumoured to be called his “disco disk“, much to the crowd’s, well mostly my, delight.

Just when things couldn’t possibly get any better, the rain stopped coming down in torrents and Mike Bruno and Bad Braids, who have come all the way from Philadelphia (where it’s always sunny) for this shit, stalked off into the distance (or possibly into a puff of smoke, they’re both pretty ethereal characters) to complete their European tour, the dates for which can be seen on the poster above.

About The Author

Alice Brace

"Introducing" editor at Hooting and Howling. Mostly interested in little bands with big sounds (and brass sections). Twitter: @AliceSwelly