I’ve been holding off on this for a long time. Almost a year now, since I first started this thing (has it really been a year? Christ). I held off because this could easily have devolved into simply reposting la blogotheque’s content and making the bindle a Vincent Moon fanpage. The fact that this was a concern says a lot about how much I loved what he was doing. For a long time, these Concert à Emporter were my special secret thing, this little perfect place on the internet where I would bring my favorite people when I wanted to un-cup my hands and show them the light I was holding.
The early videos were ingeniously simple in their concept: Vincent Moon got artists to Paris, put a mic on them, then followed them out into the world. Most of the early bands didn’t know it, but this wasn’t just about the music, it was an artistic collaboration. Vincent is not simply a producer, he’s an artist himself; the best of these were little films, and they were exactly what a music video should be. The casual intimacy and art-school sensibilities of his approach were so obviously successful that they’ve now been appropriated and imitated ad nauseum. Yeasayer went on to warp their sound and sputter out, and la blogotheque outsourced, grew unwieldy, and mostly lost their touch. It no longer seems novel, because it isn’t.
But there was a moment, early on, when they were just catching lightning in a bottle, one bolt after another. It was unbelievable how good the work was. After growing up on ’90s music videos, lumbering abortions that cost hundreds of thousands of dollars and were shining plastic piles of self-congratulatory shit, these first few Concert à Emporter just knocked the air right out of me. I was stoned and un-prepared, and they left me grinning like an idiot child with an ice-cream cone on a hot summer day. It became my secret, special thing, the light I kept cupped in my hands. So here’s my very favorite one, the best bit of bottled lightning. Open it, and wait for the thunder.
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Hah, thanks, Holly. It was either a very long or a very short year, I can’t decide which. But it happened, all of it, and it isn’t nothing. I’ll take it.