Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Check It. Nouvelle Vague.

The week after the 8.8 earthquake that rocked Chile, I started having trouble sleeping. I live in Santiago, which wasn't nearly as affected as other regions of this skinny country, but certain noises would just set me off, and I'd stay up until 4-5 a.m. missing the days when I'd just drop off at night.

That's when I reintroduced myself to Nouvelle Vague. Their soft, romantic bossa nova covers of 80s punk songs were exactly what my haggard, nervous spirit needed.

Just wrapping up the U.S. leg of their 2010 tour, the French Nouvelle Vague does extraordinary covers -- and I generally hate covers, but these are great.

Despite the dreamy, soft quality of their music, it's anything but boring. Sometimes drawing from the dark and dissonant like Depeche Mode, Joy Division, Bauhaus and sometimes softening up old pop ballads like Blondie's "Heart of Glass," the dreaminess is exactly what those who are, well, dreamless kind of need.

Lamentably, I just missed their Los Angeles stop at the Henry Fonda (because I'm in South America), but their vintage-style videos are readily available on YouTube. Below two of the four appear on the Brittish BalconyTV singing Sex Pistols "God Save the Queen."

-- Lauren Williams

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