May 28, 2006

Nouvelle Vague, World Cafe, NPR, 21 November 2005

Posted in mp3, radio session at 10:12 am by rgsc

It has been a rather busy week here around bootlog central so I just have a short post to entertain you all this weekend. But quality over quantity, right?

Nouvelle Vague is something of an oddity, and I mean that in the best possible way. For those who don’t know about the group, they take classic songs from the ’80s and cover them bossa nova-style. At first I thought it was something of a silly gimmick, but rather than being silly or ironic in their covers, there is a seriousness and authenticity to their approach. The result is sultry, sensuous, and pretty great any which way you look at it. By and large, I think I like their versions better than the originals (but I’m not a conoisseur of ’80s music so you may discount my musical taste at will). Here’s what NPR had to say about them:

The French band Nouvelle Vague takes classic New Wave singles from the ’80s and adds a Brazilian twist — courtesy of the other “new wave”: bossa nova.

What began as a project between Marc Collin and Olivier Libaux — both with long resumes as musicians and producers in France — has expanded to include the efforts of eight female singers, each with their own style.

The idea at the heart of Nouvelle Vague was that the songs be performed by singers who had little or no previous exposure to the original music. The results range from breathy ’60s escapism to unusual approaches to familiar lyrics.

Intrigued? I thought you might be so I offer you three tracks the Nouvelle Vague crew performed for NPR’sWorld Cafe (where the above quote appeared).

Nouvelle Vague, World Cafe, NPR, 21 November 2005

1) Intro & Interview.mp3 (2.38 MB)
2) Just Can’t Get Enough.mp3 (2.43 MB)
3) Guns of Brixton.mp3 (3.04 MB) – check out the awesome whistling action on this track
4) Ever Fallen in Love.mp3 (2.58 MB)
5) Band intro & outro.mp3 (2.06 MB)

You can stream tracks from the NV site and Dodge and Goose will hook you up with some mp3s. Check out Justin Time Records to purchase their albums. They have a new cd coming out in June and will be touring north america in september (Toronto Sept. 14, Montreal Sept. 15).


  1. Cy said,

    Sort of an offtopic question… but how do you record a stream? You recorded this set so I assume you must know how to do it! Anyway, I want to know cause streams are not dial-up friendly 😦 and I really want to hear Gomez on Morning Becomes Eclectic. (which I think was weeks ago…) Thanks!

  2. rgsc said,

    Hey Cy,
    For you question I refer you to Swen. This is where I learned how to do Real Audio.
    Follow the steps and it should work for you.

    For others I record off my soundcard using phonostar for other things.

    There may be better ways but I have found this has worked alright. Hope this helps.

  3. Ju said,

    Cool-cool…very interesting sound, and I’m liking the tracks. *grins* Only complaint I have is that no, the Buzzcocks are NOT New Wave, and now, people have argued to me that they are…-_-;

    *shrugs* Ah well…keep up the good finds. XD


  4. rgsc said,

    Wait – who thinks Buzzcocks are new wave? I think you should pelt anyone you get into that argument with with copies of “Singles Going Steady” until they either see the error of their ways or blackout. Whichever.

    Hmm. I see what you are saying – the quote from NPR would suggest that they *only* cover New Wave. I tried to be a little broader and more accurate – that they cover “classic songs from the ’80s” to cover all the basis. As you rightly point out, Buzzcocks are not New Wave, neither are the Dead Kennedys (Nouvelle Vague do a great cover of “Too Drunk to Fuck” – that was the first NV song i heard and I was hooked) etc.

  5. Dan said,

    I LOVE N.V. — and thanks for the linguistics and music lesson to you and your commentors. I couldn’t get the fifth part of the show to come through, though… after renaming the files as they came in due to overwriting, the first four were fine.
    Merci beaucoups!

  6. rgsc said,

    Hey Dan,
    Glad you liked the post – I just checked the 5th track and it should work. Ezarchive could just be being uncooperative and you may wish to try again.

  7. […] posted Mp3’s this weekend of a session Nouvelle Vague did on World Cafe last […]

  8. Hey, I found your blog while searching on Google your post looks very interesting for me. I will add a backlink and bookmark your site. Keep up the good work!

    I’m Out! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: