Paris- based Caravan Palace can’t hide its New Orleans-style heritage anymore than Donald Trump can hide his hair piece. The French electronic-swing group is drenched in early 20’s through 40’s jazz features and pushes a wallflower to get up and do the jitterbug–or perhaps, the boogie-woogie. I speak from personal experience, of course.
The band–originally formed to provide a soundtrack to silent pornographic films–is also rife with talent. Its members include Sonia Fernandez Velasco (vocals and clarinet), Arnaud Vial (guitar), Hugues Payen (violin), Camille Chapelière (clarinet), Charles Delaporte (double bass) and Antoine Toustou (electronics and trombone).
Caravan will be touring this summer in western Europe, where they first found popularity following a number of internet-released promos and demos in 2007. In the words of Natalie Imbruglia, “I’m torn.” Their 2008 album, redundantly-named Caravan Palace, may have little difference in titles, but its 23 songs float on a wide spectrum from extremely electronic (“Star Scat”) to extremely swing (“Suzy”). I wish I could showcase them all; alas, I can only choose one track. So, I hope you enjoy my pick and check out the rest of the album yourself.