La Bottine Souriante at Talk of London [16th May]
One of the livelier musical events of recent weeks was the brief visit to London of the Quebecois folk group La Bottine Souriante, a ten-piece ensemble whose music is heard to good effect on their newly-released CD 'La Mistrine' [Hemisphere 7243 5 25959 2 1].
A highly eclectic group, whose line-up includes an accordion, two fiddles & four horns, their repertoire, sung in French, brings together the chanson tradition with that of Irish traditional music, along with hints of mariachi & big-band jazz.
Performed with gusto & much stomping of feet - the group's name means 'the smiling boot' - this is the kind of show best appreciated after two or three pints of Guinness - a spirited vaudeville act involving much in the way of fun & games, & including a show-stopping tap-dance routine. Not, perhaps, as their publicity would have one believe, 'the best band in the world', but good-humoured & enjoyable stuff.
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