The Bowery Presents:
Belle & Sebastian
Men I Trust
Mon · June 11, 2018
Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pmThe Civic Theatre
$37.50 Advance | $40.00 Day of Show
This event is all ages
- This show is fully general admission
- Floor is standing room only
- Balcony and Gallery seats are first come first serve
- Bars are open on all three levels
- Bathrooms are located on the Floor and Gallery
- For more info, please vist www.civicnola.com/faqs
Belle and Sebastian have partnered with PLUS1 so that $1 from every ticket sold will go to support the volunteer rescue workers, the White Helmets, who risk their lives every day to help those affected by the conflict in Syria, regardless of their religion or politics (www.whitehelmets.org).https://www.civicnola.com/event/1631619/
Part of their appeal is that Belle and Sebastian have always given the impression of being completely unaware that they are even famous. Emerging in the late nineties, they appeared to be both press and camera-shy, but also entirely self-contained; they seemed to have a secret, something built around books and films, and yet were happy to share the love, stopping just short of writing individual songs for their fans. And their fans, naturally, became obsessive, formed their own bands, started their own loosely affiliated clubs, radio shows and websites. A secret gang – who wouldn’t want to be a part of it?
But then again if you’re a band who works with Trevor Horn, Carey Mulligan and Norah Jones, you’re probably not content to lurk in the tiny shadow offered by a seven-inch single on Postcard. And if you end up on the soundtrack to Adam Curtis’s The Power Of Nightmares, or Todd Solondz’s Storytelling, as well as Juno, then there’s going to be more than a little grit and grain to your music than adjectives like “shy” and “fragile” might suggest.
They have worked with outside producers ever since Trevor Horn helmed Dear Catastrophe Waitress in 2003, plumping up their sound, pumping it full of light and air, and getting ‘Step Into My Office Baby’ unlikely but welcome repeated plays from Ken Bruce on BBC Radio 2. This suggested a sharp step away from the tape-swapping, pen pal world they had been thought to inhabit (of course they never had, not really). Tony Hoffer (Beck, Air, Phoenix) was hired for The Life Pursuit (2006) and Write About Love (2010). The latest album was recorded in Atlanta with Ben Allen (Deerhunter, Washed Out, CeeLo Green and Animal Collective) who convinced them to leave things more open-ended, less thoroughly thought-out in advance, leaving the producer and the musicians more space to be spontaneous. The result is playful, super-melodic, with lyrical nods to both their past and an optimistic future, and joyful jumps into new musical territories.
Belle & Sebastian have stood as something different right from the beginning. Let’s have a quick poke around the previous eighteen years. Debut album Tigermilk (1996) was the product of a Stow College music business class that drummer Richard Colburn was taking; just 1,000 vinyl copies were pressed. In spite of huge major label interest (immortalised on the track Seymour Stein on their third album, The Boy With The Arab Strap) they initially signed to the tiny Jeepster label, then later to Rough Trade and now have their first worldwide deal with Matador Records. The key to their appeal was a sense of community. Their self-curated Bowlie festival would evolve into All Tomorrow’s Parties; they became central to a nascent message board culture, and a US loop of labels and fanzines (even writing a song about one, Chickfactor) that adored their music, their stance, and their imagery.
In Britain they famously upset the applecart in 1999 by winning the “Best Newcomers” BRIT award through the votes of their fans, faced accusations of vote rigging, and in the process have got the backs of the tabloids up (sample Daily Record headline: “Belle Boy’s At It Again”). So, clearly, they’ve been doing something right.
– Bob Stanley, October 2014
In 2012, while finishing his master’s degree in audio postproduction at Laval University with S. Lacasse, S. Stévance and S. Samson, Dragos spent most of his days and sleeping hours at the “LARC” studio working on his solo projects. He randomly met Jessy again, who was finishing his bachelor degree in Jazz guitar, in one of the faculty’s hallways and talked about doing a French-Touch / Italo-Disco track together. Some weeks later, they did just that. And it worked out so well that they decided to extend their collaboration to a whole project where many singers would be involved.
Between 2012 and 2016, all of Jessy’s and Dragos’ (now pursuing a PhD) releases were made as part of Dragos’ masters and PhD studies in order to gain access to the LARC’s infrastructure and to develop a unique sound by mixing and mastering at the same time, achieving loud, large and high quality renders.
In 2013, Jessy and Dragos were introduced to Odile by a mutual friend. Odile was then completing her bachelor degree as a classical singer. Her voice struck Jessy and Dragos, already both hardcore classical music fans, by its clarity and power. Odile had no clue what we were about to do, when she came at the studio to record the “Introit”, their first baroque essay. She came up with the melody of the voice on the spot and the song became one of Men I Trust’s highlights.
After the release of their first album “Men I Trust” (2014), the group had a rapid local success in Quebec and made it on several radio, web and paper charts.
Emma was a fortuitous encounter. In 2015 a mutual friend presented her to Dragos through a video posted over the Internet. She was casually singing and playing the guitar around a campfire with some of her friends. Emma’s voice was on the opposite spectrum of that of Odile, being less clear, more grainy and fragile with a mysterious twist that caught their attention. They reached her and tried recording one song called “Out in myself”, which turned to be one of the band’s easiest to record in Dragos’s small Montreal apartment.
The band then invited her to join them on live shows at the beginning of 2015. The girls’ voices blended wonderfully together and the band got lots of positive feedback from the experience. Emma has been part of us since then.
With their second album “Headroom” (2015), Men I Trust truly became a quartet. This time, the band’s music echoed outside of Quebec, with many appearances on Hype Machine and several others on Spotify and SoundCloud playlists. In the spring of 2016, the band released their single and first music video for “Humming man”. It was followed in June by “Lauren“ and “Plain View" in December.
In 2016, the band was in concert at the Canadian Music Week (Toronto), the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, the Festival d’été de Québec, M for Montreal, Pop Montreal, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Beijing.