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Tarot Bolero

Washington, DC's Tarot Bolero is an extremely theatrical ensemble whose rollicking, wacked-out cabaret rock has a bit of the flavor of a old-timey dusty saloon, a Storyville all-nude female revue, and a rickety Eastern European circus operated by midgets. The group features former members of equally theatrical, but slightly more abrasive art-punk ensembles such as Heroin, Antioch Arrow, The VSS, and Slant 6. The band is the brainchild of Aaron "Baron" Montaigne (Heroin, Antioch Arrow), who has led Tarot Bolero since 1997, navigating through three different lineups, defining its singular warped vaudevillian style with dark, melodramatic vocals, warbly creepshow organs, scary haunted house violins, and swinging boogie woogie rhythms. It's a timeless, witchy, demented brew of sounds. The Doors and Nick Cave are obvious reference points, but this is pretty unique stuff. "When My Love Turned Blue" comes from Tarot Bolero's 1998 LP, Vaudeville Rising.

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