review and photos by Liza Zinina
Yelle‘s second visit to the Seattle has proven to be even more electrifying and inspiring then the first. The spring show at the War Room was simply a warm-up for what was yet to come and the finished product captivated the ready-to-jump crowd with the beats and the energy emanating from the stage. Julie Budet, known to us as Yelle, is enthusiastic and upbeat, she is not afraid to sing about the naughty bits or women’s rights.
Reflecting back to the show in April, I thought of Yelle as a new hipster chick in legwarmers, still a little timid and possibly overwhelmed by the mostly American crowd. Back then she didn’t even have an album out Stateside, only an import. This time around however, her and her right hand man, GrandMarnier, conquered the stage of Neumo’s like experienced pros. Yelle’s electro vibe attracted a young and ready to jump crowd of the Seattle’s finest. Live drums, keys and not a backup track in sight, except for some sound effects emanating from GrandMarnier’s laptop guaranteed a show to remember. The starlet’s aerobics-inspired moves on stage went right along with the pseudo-slam-dancing of the crowd.
Yelle’s stage presence and her supple moves turn concertgoers on like a firework -- a firework of French spunk and the language’s optimism. While my knowledge of French is limited to “oui” and “merci,” there is no language barrier -- the energy is more then enough to hypnotize and force the uncontrollable jumping, singing along and hand waving.
While appearing to be a happy and simple 25 year old from Saint-Brieuc, a commune in France, Yelle’s lyrics are no joke. The fame came after a song titled “Je Veux Te Voi” was posted on her MySpace, it ultimately referred to “size” and was aimed at a member of Parisian TTC. She has since toured around most of the world and there is no stopping her. While chatting with Darek Mazzone, Yelle and her bandmates mentioned how inspired they are with the scenery and the scale of the country, since this time they are traveling in a van, taking in what they see and experience. Who knows, maybe their next album will have some banjo rhythms? We shall wait and see.