For those unfamiliar with the band, it concept is based upon a pun. Nouvelle vague translates to "Bossa Nova" in Portuguese, and "New Wave" in English. So, what they do is cover New Wave songs in Bossa Nova form. It sounds like the sort of novelty acts of Dread Zeppelin or Richard Cheese and Lounge Against the Machine, amusing, but either forgettable, or you wish it were. And it's true, when you hear them break into Mexican Radio the first time, a laugh will escape. But most of the songs are done with seriousness and style. Their version of Guns of Brixton is both chilling and strangely sexy. I Melt With You becomes less cloying. And really, why wasn't Bela Lugosi's Dead originally recorded with an accordion?
Watching them perform live was excellent. It was clear that they were having a lot of fun. During Making Plans for Nigel while one of the women sang, another stood behind her blowing bubbles for that almost Lawrence Welk show feel. They got the audience to help out with Too Drunk to Fuck. After reading the sign that instructs the bands that there is to be the NO STAGE-DIVING, the ladies daintily stepped off the stage to dance with the audience. Sadly, I was no where near that part of the stage, but I did have an excellent view of the accordion player, and she was simply divine. Accordions are now the new sexy. Well, until the next woman I see playing an instrument, probably.
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