14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars
From Manchester to Rio..., 16 Aug 2004
The idea of post-punk classics performed in a bossa nova/lounge style sounds as though it may have been conceived purely as a joke and if you're familiar with some of the original tracks then the extent of the transformation achieved by the versions on this album may raise a wry smile on occassion. But for the most part the music here transcends that kind of ironic detachment to achieve something altogether more deeply affecting.
Joy Division's "Love Will Tear Us Apart" has been covered many times before but has never been suffused with such longing, like lying on a beautiful tropical beach as the sun goes down contemplating a love left behind on the other side of the world. The version of Public Image Limited's "This Is Not Love Song" exchanges the mocking snarl of John Lydon's delivery for that of a sassy French diva singing in a voguish underground club, simultaneously sounding both breathlessly seductive and coldly detached. And the Cure's "A Forest" is transported from the depths of the cold, dank darkness of the original to a tropical rainforest repleat with the chirruping of nameless insects and the squawking of exotic birds, something sinister lurking in the undergrowth as the percussion builds to a tense climax.
A couple of the tracks don't quite reach the generally high standard of the rest of this collection but the two tracks that represent the album's pinnacle more than make up for this. Both "In A Manner Of Speaking" and "Making Plan's For Nigel" are nothing short of beautiful, filled with a poignancy and sadness that instantly makes you want to hear them again as soon as their last note dies away.