Best Disco Revival: Hercules and Love Affair
The deep-seated bias against disco that many of us who were unlucky enough to have missed disco’s heyday carry around is often difficult to overcome. But a new breed of NYC dance-music artists, ranging from Escort to Baby Oliver to DFA-label heavyweights like Shit Robot and Still Going, are toying with house and disco in ways tremendously palatable to those with little to no experience in either genre. The best of these retro-minded but forward-looking acts, though, is Hercules and Love Affair. Led by Brooklynite Andy Butler, the group’s self-titled debut CD is a lithe, propulsive, catchy, deliciously slick dance-floor cocktail, its best tracks (including the semi-hit “Blind”) topped by lead vocals from ordinarily funereal indie-folk warbler Antony Hegarty, whose voice sounds exhilarating in such an exuberant context. Thus does a decidedly niche-y sound enjoy a slight bit of mainstream exposure—Hercules and Love Affair have even taken their act on the road. Which is great, since there are vast swaths of the Midwest to re-educate.
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