Ladies and Gentlemen


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"Ladies and Gentlemen" is the debut CD from America's foremost practitioners of the ancient art of Bossa Nova, the fabulous House of Swank.

With arrangements from sparse to lush, vocals from sultry to soaring and tempos from languid to frantic, "Ladies and Gentlemen" explores the outer reaches of bossa nova, swing and torch. Of the album's 11 songs, 7 are original compositions, and 6 are bossa novas, each with a uniquely Swanky twist. So kick off your espadrilles, mix up some cocktails and surrender yourself to the soothing sounds of Swank.

Produced by Marcel Chouteau, Robin Terrault and Bob Deverell. Recorded by Greg Frey at Graphic Sound, Ringoes NJ.

Do you ever feel that some retro-lounge acts feel superior to their material? House of Swank's brand of retro-lounge keeps the irony at bay and has the musical chops to pull it off. Although their foundation is pop-jazz, vocal albums and old soundtracks, their members actually come from the rock world and have played with such alternative acts as Ween, Henry Rollins and Moe Tucker. But you wouldn't know it by listening to them, especially with chanteuse Robin Terrault singing a fine batch of original tunes--her bossa nova rhythms and femme fatale vocals play it so sincerely, it all comes off like a Rickie Lee Jones cameo on "The Courtship of Eddie's Father." The lack of any smugness may give the Bill Bixby in you the warm fuzzies, but these cool tunes aim for the show's groovy uncle in the Nehru jacket.

--Nick Dedina,

2003 House of Swank