The Courettes Close Their UK Tour With A Dynamite Double Header

This show at the 100 club was the last night of The Courettes current UK tour, ahead of their upcoming US leg that begins in a couple of weeks’ time. As Flavia and Martin Couri continue to bring their Danish/Brazilian garage rock to the masses.

Opening the show were London-based exotic garage rock five-piece band Oh! Gunquit, kicking off the music with Last Day On Earth, the opener from the band’s most recent LP Why Haven’t You Watered The Plants? That saw Simon Wild’s hot-as-they-come garage guitar rumbling into action, accentuating the incredible, dynamite vocals of Tina Swasey. Attack Of The Killer Cranes upped the intensity with the first taut sax solo from one of the outfit’s newer members Luciano Oltramari.

Oh! Gunquit @ The 100 Club (© Pauline Di Silvestro)

Oh! Gunquit @ The 100 Club (© Pauline Di Silvestro)
Oh! Gunquit @ The 100 Club (© Pauline Di Silvestro)

Tina Swasey was as irrepressible as ever, whirling across the stage during Fireballs, as she played her first trumpet solo of the set, trading licks with Simon. Head Bites Tail was driven along by Veronica Arcila’s low slung bass, as Swasey played a high kicking trumpet blast or three as they chased themselves round and round.

Get Wound Up was the prefect time for the maracas to drive on the unrelenting beat, Swasey then picking up her whip to attempt to give as many audience members some Whiplash as she could manage.

Who could argue when they claim to be Gutter Stars as they really ought to be stars. Suzy Don’t Stop didn’t let up, the pace was incredible, as was the driving guitar freak out. Love Or Hate was really a no brainer as everyone at the 100 Club loved Oh! Gunquit.

Things got downright sleazy on what may be I’m Not Your Fluffer as it’s made clear what they won’t do to get ahead, as Tina and Luciano went into the audience to play the Sax and trumpet solos, as the sonic stew was getting sleazier. As they went back onstage and Tina found her hula hoop for the bands finale of Let’s Get Twisted, then the stage lights were turned off, so not only was Tina playing trumpet and Hula Hooping, but she was also doing it in the dark, that added another level of magic to this neat trick. At the end of the song the sound man called them out for over running, to masses of boos from the audience, who would have gladly heard a few more songs. I was shocked they hadn’t signalled in the normal way to let the band know time was running short.

Oh! Gunquit @ The 100 Club (© Pauline Di Silvestro)

Oh! Gunquit @ The 100 Club (© Pauline Di Silvestro)
Oh! Gunquit @ The 100 Club (© Pauline Di Silvestro)

After a short break featuring DJ Scratchy on the vinyl decks and with Martin Couri’s drums set up at the front of the stage, it was time for The Fabulous Courettes to make their grand entrance as we all tuned into the bands Juju for the Hoodoo Hop as Flavia in her Mary Quant style red dress and matching guitar started to strike to magnificent poses while singing and playing.

The Boy I Love had super solid drumming as Flavia nailed the intent of the vocals while looking at all sorts of boys in the audience. Time Is Ticking was played as fast as they could get it, while they thanked us all for coming to the last show of the tour as Flavia drooled all over her favourite drummer, no not her husband Martin, but of course Richard Starkey (aka Beatles drummer Ringo Starr) as the bands hit single R.I.N.G.O. was played super-fast.

Until You’re Mine was full of wild poses and shaking rhythms allowing them to have a quick breather while they day dream about how great their love is, long before they start suggesting it might be heading towards becoming Trash Can Honey as the energy they were pushing out meant there was precious little let up even between song with them encouraging us to treat Sunday night like a Saturday night.

The Courettes @ The 100 Club (© Pauline Di Silvestro)

The Courettes @ The 100 Club (© Pauline Di Silvestro)
The Courettes @ The 100 Club (© Pauline Di Silvestro)

Want You! Like A Cigarette was I think when the bouncer had to move to stand between two guys in the audience who had been arguing, mainly about one of them shaking Flavia’s microphone stand, which was totally out of order. That wasn’t the sort of things they sang about going on in the Night Time as the frantic drumming makes clear they just won’t let up having a good time in the Night Time.

Tough Like That had precision riffing ready to take out anyone that gets in The Courettes way. If that doesn’t work then Boom! Dynamite! will as Flavia uses her guitar like an assault rifle pointing and firing at the audience at will.

The Courettes @ The 100 Club (© Pauline Di Silvestro)

The Courettes @ The 100 Club (© Pauline Di Silvestro)
The Courettes @ The 100 Club (© Pauline Di Silvestro)

Strawberry Boy was about as sentimental as they get before they played a new song, that they hope will be out next spring. Then to celebrate the end of the tour they invited all of Oh! Gunquit to join them in a super messy maraca and sax infused version of Hop The Twig as Flavia handed her guitar to a woman in the audience for some squalling noise, it then got handed to road manager Patrice Picard for a few bars.

For an encore they played one more new song to leave us all wanting to hear the new album when it comes out next spring. The Courettes have proved that they are one of the most exciting of the garage rock duo’s currently on the live circuit and need to be seen live to really get the power they have.

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Live review of The Courettes @ 100 Club on 10th September 2023 by Simon Phillips. Photography by Pauline Di Silvestro.

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