Saturday 20th November 2004
Le Staccato

A good initiative that the one taken by the young association from the Côte d'Azur AUTRE QUE, to whom we owe the passage of Simon Finn in the south of France on the Saturday 20 November 2004.

Situated only few steps from the Promenade des Anglais, the Staccato was the ideally chosen place for the coming of the British gentlemen exiled in Canada. The venue was a nice vaulted cellar with couches disposed on either side.

On our arrival, two very nice surprises awaited us with, first of all, the unexpected presence of Joolie Wood. It was very touching to see Joolie when you think of her contribution on violin and flute to several albums and concerts of Current 93. It's worth reminding that it is to David Tibet that we owe Simon's more than deserved return to the light after being forgotten for decades. Time seems to have no hold over Simon as he looked exactly like the photo, dated from the 70's, that features in the booklet of "Pass the distance".
The second surprise of the evening was the presence of the group Oraison, who have been quite discrete these last few years. So, it was with even more impatience and enthusiasm that the program of this evening was awaited.

It was as a trio that Oraison took the stage.
Sebastian on vocals and guitar accompanied by Marco on keyboards were joined by Nathalie on percussions. Several titles from their first album were played: 'The Rebellion', 'Blood Royale', 'Within our Hearts' as well as a superb cover of the Harvest Rain song 'Southern Cross'. The tracks flowed with efficiency. Sebastian's guitar playing and singing were perfect with, it is worth noting, a good stage presence. Marco's keyboard swathes found with efficiency their place alongside the guitar. Nathalie brought a touch of femininity and softness to Oraison's beautiful compositions.

In twenty minutes and six songs, Oraison shared their emotions with brio and showed an enormous potential.
For their return to the stage, Oraison's performance was simple and convincing. It leaves a longing to hear even more songs.

After a short pause, it was Simon and Joolie's turn to take possession of the stage. The titles were taken from the "Pass the distance" album ('What a day', 'Fades (Pass the distance)', 'Patrice', 'Jerusalem') and the "Silent City Creep" mini album ('Deeply Flawed', 'Walkie Talkie', 'Wanted You', 'Eros').
A few unknown songs were also played like the superb 'Subjunctive Mood' recently released on a mini album from Simon. Scenes of life, searches and questionings followed each other with an acoustic treatment that far removed from the experimentation of 1970. Laid bare, the titles revealed all their strengths and their actuality.

Simon was very surprising with his so particular voice and his complete faith in the music he was playing. It was quite paradoxical to hear him play this way and to sing so correctly whilst seeing him sway his body so much. Joolie Wood was seated next to him and accompanied him alternately on the violin or the flute. She softened, she tempered Simon's excesses by bring texture and depth to Simon's guitars.

The last title was of course a completely passionate version of 'Jerusalem'; one of the highlights of sir Finn's discography. C93 made no mistake in rerecording on the occasion of the 2004 Toronto festival.
Simon then retired, after giving himself completely to his music.
It is without doubt on stage that all Simon's magic comes to forth. And, after having seen him, you ask yourself why he can have disappeared so many years from the music scene, so strong are his compositions and performances.

It was really a great moment to which we were invited. But unfortunately, you remark that once again to few people were present at this nice event that reunited two generations of songwriters.
A big thank you to AUTRE QUE for this evening while hoping to attend more events of this quality.

Mehr Licht
Spring 2005

Simon Finn :
Oraison :