Hercules and Love Affair’s Andy Butler and Rouge Mary ‘Rejoice’ on Exuberant New Single

At such a stressful, scary time in our lives, it’s important to remember to take time to breathe, sit back, and rejoice. That’s the stance that Andy Butler’s supergroup Hercules and Love Affair have taken with their dancefloor-ready single, “Rejoice.”

The latest track from their upcoming album Omnion is an ode to the joy Butler has found four years after going sober after years of serious drug addiction—and he’s brought the Algerian, gender-nonconforming wunderkind Rouge Mary along for the party. It’s a fitting addition to the track, given that Rouge played an integral role in helping Butler get back on his feet and rebuild his life.

As Rouge explains, the track’s poignant lyrics came together in a single day and reflect on the “importance of gratitude and the power of positive thoughts.” It was in this collaboration, and the positivity that he felt from Rouge, that Butler found the inspiration for the exuberant new track.

“As with this entire record, ‘Rejoice’ was born out of taking detours from a traditional ‘vocal house’ record,” he said over email. “The exuberance just pointed me to the word ‘Rejoice,’ so I asked her to bring that message to the song. It’s a message she brings every day to her life, so it was exciting to watch her once again share ‘the keys to the kingdom!’”

You can pre-order Hercules and Love Affair’s new record Omnion before it arrives on Sept 1st via Big Beat Records by clicking here.


The Olympics & Clubland, Mick Jagger Turns 69

With major events starting this weekend, the million-pound question is this: how will the Olympics affect clubland?

The time difference between London and New York has events slated between 4am and 6pm. The ability and the where-with-all to record shows for later viewing has increased sharply over the years. Will this Olympics be the TIVO Olympics, or will the public miss most of it or take sick days to see relevant events? In hospitality, sports bars will open early to accommodate viewers, and their bottom line will get a boost. Sports bars thrive during the NFL and College Football seasons, but baseball and its boys of summer rarely attract big crowds. The added revenue stream is a blessing.

Will clubbers be too tired to party hardy at night? Will they leave joints early because they plan on staying awake or getting up early to catch Michael Phelps live or a USA basketball team game? Will mid-day or afternoon beers slow sales at night?  My bet is that the only effect these Olympics will have on clubland is they’ll probably upgrade the small talk and pick-up lines.

I’m excited about the inaugural Catalpa Festival on Randall’s Island this weekend. It’s a 1pm-11pm affair on Saturday and Sunday with such acts as Hercules and Love Affair, TV On The Radio, The Black Keys, Matt+ Kim, and Girl Talk performing.  Snoop Doog will perform “Doggystyle” in its entirety. There is a reggae stage and a dance music venue with names like Alex English, Felix Da Housecat, and Hellfire Machina involved.

While I’m DJing at Hotel Chantelle tonight with Sam Valentine and Jes Leopard, another rocker event will be rocking at Sullivan Room. The party, called “Take Back New York," will celebrate Nicki Camp & Kerry Robinson’s belated birthdays.

Belated is right: Nicki was born on July 1st. I bet he’s telling folks he’s 29. I worked with Nicki when he ran those Sunday Rock and Roll Church nights at Limelight and kept in touch when he plied his trade at Don Hill’s. Tonight there will be performances by the New York All-Stars (Shannon Conley, Nicki Camp, Jimi K. Bones, Dave Purcell, Adam James, Al Mars), with special guests Michael T & The Vanities.

The soiree will be hosted by Lourdes Castellon and Ahmed Adil, and DJ Victor Auton will spin rock, metal, glam, and alternative throughout the night. I always liked Nicki and I wish him a belated 29th birthday.

Speaking of rockers, my favorite craggly-faced old bastard Mick Jagger celebrates his 69th birthday today. That makes me feel old, yet on some level, a bit young. I’ll have my editor link you back to last year’s article, which sums up my feelings toward Mick. The bottom line is that my set tonight will be top heavy with Rolling Stones tracks, and I’ll toast to Mick as I look forward to the 50th Anniversary Tour, which I hear will be pushed back to 2013. Somehow, a 51st Anniversary Tour sounds dodgy.

Weekend Recovery: ‘Sunset’ Remix

The xx already make music ideal for pulling the covers up to your chin and ignoring the world for a few hours more. “Sunset,” off of last year’s ultimately underrated Coexist, is a hushed, subzero kind of song—and here it gets a bit stirred up by Kim Ann Foxman, who was previously a part of Hercules & Love Affair.

And who says all dance music has to be abrasive bangers? Foxman’s take on “Sunset” preserves all the up-close dialogue and complicates the beat with the precision of a Swiss watchmaker. In the end, she’s warming up the song itself, pulling it out of its desolation.

(I won’t try to explain what the video for this depicts. Just know that it’s weird and pretty, and very soothing.)


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Celebrities, Shirtless Partygoing, & More @ Chanel

I’m here to recount in exhaustive detail the utter fabulousness that was last night’s Chanel party celebrating the opening of the Zaha Hadid-designed Chanel Mobile Art pavilion (open to the public in Central Park’s Rumsey Playfield until November 9). Upon arrival, I was politely ushered past the lengthy red carpet (at which Chanel’s Kaiser, Karl Lagerfeld, and his date Kate Bosworth, as well as Eve and Sarah Jessica Parker all stopped to show love for the paps), and subsequently greeted around every bend with, “welcome to Chanel,” and promptly handed a fresh glass of champagne. The party consisted of the Zaha Hadid installation, an outdoor bar, and a separate structure, which housed, in addition to a jam-packed crowd of exquisitely dressed and very skinny bodies, a second bar and a stage.

Close to 9 p.m., disco-heavy hometown/Lagerfeld favorite Hercules and Love Affair took the stage. Decked out in head-to-toe borrowed Chanel gear they’d picked out themselves (the price tags still on in some cases), they performed to the delight of a crowd that included Purple Fashion’s Olivier Zahm, who watched from a couch perched beside Vogue Paris’s editrix Carine Roitfeld, Misshape Leigh Lezark, model Agyness Deyn, and boyfriend/Strokes guitarist Albert Hammond Jr. Then there was Zaha Hadid in metallic leggings, plus Zac Posen and a slew of stunning models (of which Freja Beha was by far the closest to the stage, and seemingly most stoked for the show). The performance flirted with the raucous but leaned more towards refined. It was Chanel after all.

Following Hercules and Love Affair’s finale (appropriately, “Hercules’ Theme” off their namesake album), a storm of stiletto-clad ladies and slim suited gentlemen sprang into the open air for relief from the boogying body heat-induced steamy room. I took the opportunity to stroll through the stunning Mobile Art pavilion (at which there had been an extremely long line to enter prior to the show). Of the 18 different art installations — all inspired by Chanel’s iconic 2.55 quilted handbag — I will simply say that altogether they absolutely warrant a visit. Just be sure to grab the free audio guide as, fittingly, French icon Jeanne Moreau narrates. Highlights include nude men and women fighting with, catching, and swimming atop Chanel purses — all displayed as video within open cardboard boxes. And, near the exit, there’s an indoor prayer tree where one can attach a wish, which, in the case of last night’s partygoers, included messages like “Aggy Loves Albert, Forever,” “Obama,” and “I want to fuck Karl Lagerfeld.”

Back inside the second structure, LCD Soundsystem’s James Murphy was manning the decks for a substantially dissipated crowd. As for raucous, one guy managed to disrobe to his pants and smoke a cigarette for a full five minutes before security respectfully instructed him to put his clothes on and put out the smoke. The Hercules crew was still in attendance with a handful of friends when I left at 11 p.m., but by then, nearly the last of the fashion crowd had cleared out. As for the answer to the question, which was on my mind all night: Do the band members get to keep the clothes? Hercules’ Kim Ann Foxman, glancing down at the drool-worthy skinny suit and embellished white button-up she had on, replied “I’m looking into it.”

Photo: Tiffany Roth