Thursday, March 3, 2011

CD Review: La Femme - Le Podium #1

Note: This review originally appeared in the Illinois Entertainer.

There has been a controversy involving the explicit nature of the cover of La Femme’s debut CD, Le Podium #1, so I’ve decided to use a photo of Inspector Clouseau instead.

La Femme is a new band comprised of four Paris-based guys who recruited a rotating corps of female singers to augment the spacey keyboards-based arrangements on their debut EP, Le Podium #1. Sung in French, the vocals are alluring, but almost secondary to the quartet’s fun and irresistibly catchy blend of surf rock and vintage new wave. Still, it’s hard not be curious about what those exotic words might actually mean.

The pulsating opener, “Telegraphe” could have been the theme song for a cartoon show back in the 1960’s, while the synth beats and twanging guitars on the energetic “Sur La Planche” evoke James Bond style espionage. “Francoise” is slower and more mysterious, like a tour of a haunted chateau, as disembodied voices drift through the various synthesizers. “La Femme Ressort,” like the other tracks on Le Podium #1 exudes a nocturnal ambience that seems perfect for dance clubs and parties.

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