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Nouvelle Vague: The Sexy Side Of Depeche Mode

Covering new wave and punk songs in a French-tinged, bossa nova-infused style, Nouvelle Vague takes classic songs to new places. The group's most recent album, 3, tackles The Police, Violent Femmes, The Sex Pistols and more. But it's the album's first song that best applies the sensuous nature of Nouvelle Vague to a song that benefits from the treatment. Losing the campy sound effects and adding a rich bossa nova touch, Nouvelle Vague makes "Master and Servant" more deeply sexy than Depeche Mode could have imagined.

The slip of sheets is almost audible in Melanie Pain's bedroom whisper, which exudes suggestion and promise; meanwhile, the deep bass underpinning the refrains of "master and servant" is provided by Depeche Mode's own Martin Gore. The random twang of jaw harp underscores a shuffling, shimmying two-step, with each hip thrust drawing the listener in closer. It's enough to leave a sweaty sheen on the brow of even the iciest Depeche Mode fan.

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Claire Blaustein
Claire Blaustein is a freelance writer and music critic who writes for a variety of publications, including The Washington Post, Exclaim! Magazine and La Scena Musicale. She came to NPR as a Performance Today intern in 2005, and has thus far refused to leave. When not doing any of the above, she writes in her blog, I Dig Music..., and pouts until someone gives her a new CD to play with.
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