Le Casino de Paris 12 – 14th February 2009
I’ve been pretty fortunate over my 51 years on this planet. I’ve generally fallen “butter side up”, been in the right place at the right time career wise and from a musical perspective, even though I wasn’t blessed with any creative genes, I have had the pleasure to have witnessed “The Greatest Band on Earth”, Magma and Christian Vander, perform on a scattering of occasions over a period spanning four decades.
I was lucky enough to see Magma a couple of times in London “first time around” during the 70′s. Had accrued enough spare cash to finance some concerts in London of Offering (billed as Magma!) in 1988/89.Witnessed the 30 year celebrations at Le Trianon, Paris in 2000, the Retrospective 4 weeks at Le Triton in 2005 and now this! The 40 year Anniversary Concerts at Le Casino de Paris. Luckily my day job didn’t clash in anyway with this historic occasion, so with tickets in hand, well … waiting for pick up (hopefully) at the box office, we were off to Paris.
I say “we” as I was about to break the unwritten rule. Actually it is a written rule, from a 70′s review of a Magma concert. “Never bring your girlfriend to a Magma concert” was the advice. It’s like an 11th commandment. The one they missed out. We’ve been to loads of concerts, not my choices, but thanks to her, I’ve been exposed to an abundance of great bands that I would never have given the time of day to otherwise. However, whilst her musical bent is far removed from MOR, Magma are no small step for man or woman kind. They are the musical equivalent of Marmite. You either love them or hate them, or possibly don’t persevere long enough to acquire the taste. So here we go, February 14th (Valentine’s Day) in Paris, what more could a girl ask for? Well instead of a top quality meal, a bottle of bubbly, a walk up the Champs Elysees and a whiz up the old Tower, it’s turn left at the Red Light District, down La Rue De Clichy and a romantic evening watching Christian Vander beat seven bells of shit out of his drum kit! Fortunately, things went better than I could have possibly imagined and whilst Jeannie didn’t at any time rush off to the Magma concession shop to but a K.A. t-shirt, as the three days unfolded she “got it”. Most people don’t.