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Les Georges Leningrad - Deux Hot Dogs Moutarde Chou

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Artist: Les Georges Leningrad

Album: Deux Hot Dogs Moutarde Chou

Label: Blow the Fuse

Review date: Aug. 19, 2003

The Painfully Hip

Montreal has sprouted many bands this year that are reportedly making music ‘uniquely their own’, but all the while drawing their sound from specific, heavily discussed musical genres. Hipsters and scenesters know to take their staple cues from electrofunk, garage, punk, and no-wave, then mashing it up into some kind of musical blend of noise with a trashy sensibility. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that this Montreal foursome, Les Georges Leningrad, has cranked out thirteen tracks of their own dirty version. It is 2003, after all, and this means that being original takes effort. LGL’s catchy grooves, a penchant for ’70s art-punk and lo-fi aesthetics have made Deux Hot Dogs Moutarde Chou palatable enough to surpass its oh-so-cool tawdriness.

A certain cheapness, in a non-monetary sense of the word, permeates tracks like “La Chienne” (or translated, “The Bitch”) in which quaint snippets of lyrics about a Gucci dress, Chanel belt, and chi-chi nails overlay hypnotic twangy samples. The hypnosis only lasts so long however, as an outburst of the words “la chienne, la chienne” are unleashed like the snap of a dominatrix’s whip. Various indecipherable warble, screeching yelps, desperate whining pleas, and their own secret language accompany an overall preference for repetitive drum patterns and thick, heavy basslines. Tensions abound, and the annoying vocals are at times as painfully shrilling as nails on a blackboard. Obnoxious whines, like that of a bratty child, in “Georges V” will test anyone’s aural tolerance level for high-pitched vocal frequencies. Shrieks aside, its ghoulish tendencies and electropop beats could have a Halloween costume party dancing till the wee hours (until the end, when the music comes to a halt and the whiners carry on like a child playing out a good tantrum).

Unquestionably a bunch of pretentious attention seekers, Les Georges Leningrad present themselves donned in cabaret mystique and theatrical antics good enough for a dark comedy – this decade’s Rocky Horror Picture Show. Their jigsaw sound conflates The Birthday Party, Chicks on Speed, Lydia Lunch, Quintron, Lake of Dracula, and the Flying Luttenbachers – a bleak, yet sarcastically humorous gimmick that fits the times.

By Heidi Chapson

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