The Spirit of the 60s in Our Time

Gig Review: Flare Voyant at Nightclub Colis

Unlike most rock and rollers, this band’s timekeeping was impressive, and early-birds would’ve missed them as they started their set spot on at 7:30. They’re a four-piece comprising Thomas Baigneres on vocals, Rod Bourganos on guitars, George Hudson on bass, Lucas Roxo on drums. They were a very tight unit and clearly very well-rehearsed.

Five of their songs were originals, including ‘Heart Attack ‘ and ‘Empty Soul’. Their final song was Sam and Dave’s ‘Hold On, I’m Coming’, and the Yardbirds were mentioned in an intro, but it wasn’t a song that I knew. Most of the numbers were upbeat and had a full sound, but they often varied the tempo.

Thomas has shades of Mick Jagger and David Johansen from the New York Dolls about him, as he has a mouth that’s on the large side, which is a fine asset for a vocalist, and he paced the stage as if to the manner born. Unfortunately, most of his vocals were muffled in the mix, which was a shame, as they were well-delivered and tuneful.

Rod’s choppy guitar sound propelled the songs along and was reminiscent of the Gang of Four and Franz Ferdinand. Rod switched guitars for the fourth song only and created a more jangly, sitar-like sound. Other than that, though, their music wasn’t redolent of the 60s in particular, but it was timeless and impressive with the drums and bass constantly creating unusual rhythms, and, together with the guitar, a polyphonic wall of sound. 

There was a certain flavour of late 60s clothing in evidence, though, including a psychedelic shirt and trousers, plus loons and a fedora. We had an occasional waft of dry ice, too, to add to the atmosphere.

The set was well-paced with what was, for me at any rate, their strongest song – the bluesy ‘Empty Soul’ – being second last, with that Sam and Dave classic finishing off. The audience at that early hour was sparse, but there was a lot of applause at the end of their set, which was well-deserved.

They have two EP’s available, the eponymous ‘Flare Voyant’ – which was produced by Chris Kimsey, engineer on several Rolling Stones albums, including ‘Sticky Fingers’, and co-producer of ‘Undercover’ and ‘Steel Wheels’, and ‘Seeds of the Flamboyant’, which was actually recorded first.

You can next catch them in London at Paper Dress Vintage in Mare Street, Hackney on 28th April and I heartily recommend them.

Further details can be found on their Facebook page and via flarevoyant@gmail.com.


Ian Mole is a teacher of English to overseas students and a walking tour guide in London, specializing in music-related tours

 

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