Les Sans Culottes

Influenced greatly by 1960s French pop, les Sans Culottes moved in 1996 to Brooklyn, NY, where the group of eccentric musicians established itself with wild, outgoing live performances. Led by Clermont Ferrand and frisky chanteuses Kit Kat le Noir and Celine Dijon, les Sans Culottes (which translates to "those without undergarments," but also refers to the working-class members of the Third Estate during the French Revolution) found inspiration in the classic French pop of such artists as Serge Gainsbourg, France Gall, Jacques Dutronc, and Jacques Brel. The group's backing band -- bassist Jean Luc Retard, drummer Harry Covert, keyboardist Morris "Maurice" Chevrolet, guitarist Cal D'Hommage -- brought a rugged garage rock sound to the singing, resulting in a strange hybrid of garage cabaret that made the group sound quite unique, particularly in New York. Les Sans Culottes issued its self-titled debut album in 1999 on its own Escargo-Go label. The album featured a collection of '60s French pop such as Gainsbourg's "Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde" and Dutronc's "Les Cactus." The Ennui & the Ecstacy followed in 2001 and Faux Realism in 2002. ~ Jason Birchmeier

    Brooklyn, NY

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