Friday, 15 December 2017

Art Rock festival and the return of Marquis de Sade

With festival details continuing to emerge in recent days, the Art Rock festival held in Saint-Brieuc in Brittany is the latest to confirm their headline act and it's an interesting one for sure.

In a well-curated decision, Rennes-based act Marquis de Sade, one of the original post punk acts are set to headline.

Marquis de Sade were heavily influenced by UK post punk, and were active from 1977 to 1981, releasing two albums in their career, Dantzig Twist (1979) and Rue de Siam (1981).  Essentially a three piece with supporting musicians, their career may have been short, but they left a memorable impression and were one of the acts that helped establish Rennes as a credible place for music.

Their sound had an angular modern flavour with a taste of funk, more sophisticated that the reheated rock n roll revival sounds of many punk bands. While pioneers of cold wave rock, there's something of UK 70s prog outsiders Van de Graaf Generator in what they do, albeit perhaps more streamlined.

Their work stands well alongside UK contemporaries like Magazine or Gang of Four but also with later acts like The Cure and Bauhaus.

Marquis de Sade signalled their return with a gig at Le Liberté in Rennes in September, although apparently it was to be a one off performance.

The 35th festival Art Rock is held at Saint-Brieuc on May 18, 19 and 20. More acts are to be announced in forthcoming weeks.

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