These guys are comfortable in their own skin, and therefore there is matching natural skin photography on this page. They court controversy and as an all female fronted band they choose to sometimes play topless and so does Sam their drummer!
The SoapGirls Armed with unforgettable melodies and catchy choruses, The SoapGirls energy, rawness and authenticity live, has earned them a formidable reputation. Performing continuously throughout 2017, 2018 and now 2019 these fearless French born sisters Mille and Mie, have slayed critics and earned a dedicated group of followers known as the ‘The SoapSuds’, who follow the band across the UK and Europe.
The SoapGirls are society’s rejects and their punk credentials were rubber stamped by scintillating performances at the legendary Rebellion Festival in 2017 and such was the their success that they were asked back to play the Blackpool event again in 2018. The SoapGirls write outsider anthems that are androgynous, audacious and straight from the heart.
I arrived in Lewes by train, and the Sunday services put me behind schedule. I wanted to catch a friend who plays for the advertised support band Perjury, I heard afterwards that their drummer had left. A shame. The unfilled space gave me a chance to chat to all of the members of The SoapGirls and have a catch up.
Why you should see The SoapGirls? Well, they are a good band. They have the talent, personas, stage presence, activities and, importantly, they have the songs to pull it off and put on a great show. Go and check them out on their UK tour. The SoapGirls tonight reminded us that music can still be straight to the point, efficient, honest and exciting.
Scene Sussex is not taking part in any online arguments or discussion involving this band. We take no-ones side on what the band decide to wear, that is down to the band, its what they want. As they say if you don’t like it then either don’t come or go to the bar. This is a report and write up of the gig only.
Noemie Debray – Mie on guitar and vocals.
Camille Debray – Mille on bass guitar, vocals and body contortions.
Sam – flaming red hair and drums!
Noemie Debray – Mie on guitar and vocals. She puts out some damn fine fretwork throughout the fiery set. Mie sets your ears on fire with some superb breaks and with plenty of buzzsaw riffs!
Mille on bass guitar, vocals and body contortions. Mille is fabulous, you cant take your eyes of her as she hurls herself and her body around the stage all the whole producing some awesome gut moving bass riffs!
Sam – flaming red hair and drums! The man at the back is an absolute powerhouse. Sam keeps it all together with some power on the drums with some fine fills and patterns and he can come in for some band banter from his band mates!
The Soapgirls take to the stage, to a warm cheer and the room in Lewes was comfortably full and the band were greeted by smiles and a buzz of anticipation from those who had not seen them before. The SoapGirls took to the mic and in a phased down Dalek sound effect said hi and introduced themselves.
I had learned from previous encounters to grab as many shots of Milles arms and legs early, this is where the set list was! As the set progressed and it got hotter the set list started to smudge and vanish!
The SoapGirls will continue to prove that punk is NOT dead. The SoapGirls show and prove that women can kick ass. The SoapGirls can be as fearless and individual as any male musician you may want to compare them with. Good luck to them and long may they continue to deliver their great sounding music in a way they are comfortable performing it.
The SoapGirls: The Set
Please excuse any running order of the set listing, but here goes! Step Outside was up first and their punky grunge fuelled garage with some killer riffs is most enjoyable, as we flow into the kicking tune Johnny Rotten. A great start to the night. Last time I saw them they played quite a short set, tonight they promised a longer, fuller gig. Two songs in and Mille kicked off her 5 inch heels and untangled her head gear. It was hot in the venue and the girls were doing a great job in generating some real steam heat.
Mie and Mille work so well together. They are sisters and seem to know in advance what each other is going to do. We had songs loaded with screaming vocals, harmony, and some sublime growls. These girls give everything. Society’s Rejects, the title of their first album, fired up next and this is really an attention grabber, a song full of attitude. Fall Down, the wonderful Sams On Crack had the assembled bopping along quite nicely with the chanted chorus. Original Sin made the set list and is has a darker, heavier feel to it than the other songs.
Ex Girlfriend and Fall Down were in the set again. Its a bit rougher, a bit aggressive, these two musicians don’t take any prisoners as their guitar and bass blasts at you, its all brilliantly mixed in with some really top heavy drumming from Sam. The set moved along and there was nudity, lots of it, as a few members of the audience stripped down, wearing only a smile. The sisters by now are on unstoppable form and lead on the audience to dance and sing with them. One guy refused to cover anything up with a nappy that was produced by Mille and was quite happy to dance around in the skin he was born with.
Mille amazed the audience with her moves and contortions! We had leaps, bending over backwards and of course her trade mark splits! Hate Breeds led us toward the last section of the set. The big thing that comes across from these guys is just how much the sisters enjoy what they do. They are always smiling.
The last three songs came up hardly allowing us to gasp for air! Bad Bitch (what a song!), the twanging guitar heralded Party in Hell and finally Real. That was it, The SoapGirls had us fixed to the spot for almost an hour and 30 minutes. Sure, there is plenty of chat but there is plenty of good music. Camille expressed the sisters’ frustration about the way they are treated because they choose to expose their skin. “Skin is just skin and shouldn’t be seen always in a sexual way”. She had told me about some events over the previous two days, and their fabulous manager Sam filled in some of the gaps. I was staggered to learn what they had been subjected to. These guys don’t deserve that.
It’s got to be hard to keep that level of intensity up for a full on set, but the commentary from the girls seemed to fuel them on to higher levels. The songs, like the band when on stage are filled with angst, power and a passion you can almost touch. But, at the same time, you can have a good dance. At one stage Mille pulled off a perfect Iggy back breaker pose!
I was lucky to have spent a bit of time with all three members of the band in Brighton and Lewes and I can say, hand on heart, that they are 3 of the nicest people you could want to meet. They don’t seem to care what people think of them. They will dress in what they want and look how they want. They are what the essence of punk rock was meant to be. The SoapGirls do it well. Live, these guys are totally unpredictable and they have a wonderful sense of mischief and a generous hint of mayhem about them. Sure, they have an agenda and talk to their audiences to expand perceptions of gender, race and bullying. I cant find anything to fault these guys on. They sing, they play and come to entertain in their own way. It is unique and these guys deserve a page in punk history.
There’s some great audience participation towards the end of the set. We all had a bloody good night, and speaking to folk a couple of days after the gig we all agreed to see them again if they come back this way. A night with The SoapGirls is a night you aint gonna forget in a hurry!
Thank you The SoapGirls – we had a blast and thank you for the photos and conversation. Go on, now go see these guys as their tour continues or if they happen back down this way. You can catch The SoapGirls:
The SoapGirls are on Facebook
The SoapGirls are on the WWW
The night was hosted by The Big Blue Shed, love these guys. They love what they do and bring great artists to great venues across the region – and they are on Facebook
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All original pictures / video – copyright to IANB/MEDIA WORKS/ SCENE SUSSEX – Ian “The Lens” Bourn 2019.
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