Nouvelle Vague

Bande à Part

The ’00s are the new ’80s. When poseurs like She Wants Revenge and Rock Kills Kid are stealing so heavily from the sound and style of ’80s rock and pop, it feels as if we need an ’80s covers album like we need another, uh, I don’t know, Limp Bizkit record. But the French (male) producers and (female) singers responsible for Nouvelle Vague, now on their second full-length, have a secret weapon: bossa nova. Or, as I like to call it, “the best genre of pop music ever created by humankind.” There is no song that doesn’t sound sexy in bossa redux, and Nouvelle Vague proves it by taking on strait-laced numbers by U2, Blondie, Bauhaus and a slew of others. Angular new wave is transformed by nylon-stringed guitars and Brazilian percussion. Against all odds, it works.