“It’s one of 2013′s great albums” – Jeff Jenkins, Inpress
VAUDEVILLE SMASH’s stunning debut album, ‘DANCING FOR THE GIRL’, opens with singer Marc Lucchesi declaring, “I’m stepping out for a while.” Over the next hour, he takes the listener on a thrilling trip, “hoping that this night will last forever” (Dancing For The Girl), where “I hear music in the air” (Devil Said) and “You make me wanna dance” (I Got That Feeling).
Call it the best night of your life, ‘DANCING FOR THE GIRL’ is like an ’80s teen movie come to life, the soundtrack to the perfect Blue Light Disco. But it’s not all some kind of wonderful. There are some delightfully dark moments: Don’t Say A Word is an account of desperation and infidelity, Ghouls is like an eerier version of Flashdance’s Maniac, while I Got That Feeling is a song about the joy of love – after devastating heartbreak.Fasten your seat-belts; it’s going to be an unforgettable ride.
“Let’s write a story about us …” (Best Night)
VAUDEVILLE SMASH is a band of brothers and two mates. Marc, Dan and Luca Lucchesi had a diverse musical upbringing. Their dad sang Italian and Spanish folk songs and dug The Beatles, while their mum’s dad was the conductor of the Adelaide Latvian men’s choir and taught the kids classical piano.
Ever since VAUDEVILLE SMASH played their first gig (at Fitzroy’s Bar Open in September 2009), you knew they were something special. No other Australian band sounds like ’em. In case you’re wondering, they took their name from an Italian children’s karaoke machine that was around in the late ’80s, and they list their influences as Hall & Oates, Michael Jackson, Huey Lewis and the News, Todd Rundgren, Earth, Wind & Fire, and Prince.
VAUDEVILLE SMASH have carved their own niche, building a formidable following in their hometown of Melbourne, selling out the Corner Hotel, playing at the Australian Open, being awarded the Most Popular New Band at the St Kilda Festival, and hailed as one of the “13 bands to watch in 2013” in Inpress. They’ve also twice been invited to perform at South by Southwest in Austin (after being acclaimed as one of SXSW’s “buzz bands” by The Huffington Post in 2011, they made a triumphant return in 2013).
“I’ll be damned if Vaudeville Smash aren’t the most mind-blowingly refreshing live act to emerge from Melbourne since God knows when.” – Lachlan Kanoniuk, Beat
The dance floor is packed at a VAUDEVILLE SMASH gig. The band is all about entertainment. Their early EPs – Hey, It’s The Vaudeville Smash; Love Yachts Geronimo and Breezy Summer Hits – captured the live vibe. “But this time around we didn’t just want to emulate our live sound in the studio,” explains singer and sax man Marc Lucchesi. “We wanted the album to be more of a sonic feast.”
“Vaudeville Smash: perfect soundtrack for a montage in an ’80s movie.” – Mark R. Collins, The Huffington Post
Dancing For The Girl – which manages to sound both wonderfully nostalgic and right now – was mixed by John Castle (The Bamboos, Washington), who also produced two songs (Don’t Say A Word and Strangest Dream). The rest of the album was produced by Dan Lucchesi –“the most pedantic, OCD, stressful dude on earth,” according to brother Marc. “But he comes up with the magic touches.”The guys considered calling the album “Exploring MOR”, a wry reference to their affection for middle-of-the-road sounds. Then they thought of “Hey There, Danny” (with a pic of Dan on the cover), named after a song they recorded but which failed to make the final cut. In the end, the band opted for Dancing For The Girl, the last song written for the record. “It really explains who we are,” Marc smiles. “When I was young and dumb, everything I did was to try to impress girls. That’s the reason I became a musician. Then I learned to love it.”Don’t be mistaken by the band’s easygoing charm. There’s some serious musicianship on show on ‘DANCING FOR THE GIRL’ – check out the Beach Boys-like harmonies that serve as the intro to Ghouls, the delicious doo-wop harmonies in Honeymoon, the frenetic flute introduction to Devil Said, and the sax solo at the end of Time. Vaudeville Smash might not take themselves too seriously, but they take their music seriously.The album concludes with Time, a moment of sober reflection, the morning after the night before, when “All I have is memories …” Who knows where you’ll end up after the Vaudeville Smash experience? One thing is certain: ‘DANCING FOR THE GIRL’ is an album you’ll never forget.
“Like New Zealand’s Ladyhawke, the band aims to remind the hippest of hipsters of certain truths they’re afraid to acknowledge: Those high-NRG, quasi-disco dance tunes of the late 1970s and 1980s didn’t suck. In fact, a lot of them were amazing, and they made people smile and dance for a reason.” - Blurt