You never know what surprises New Orleans will have in store for you. We kicked off a perfect weekend there with a blissfully debaucherous meal at Boucherie. It was enough to make anyone’s head spin. From there, the rest of our trip followed suit. There is no better setting for a music festival than the streets of the French Quarter.
Saturday the crowds were so heavy that we sought out a smaller stage at The Mint for a little reprieve. We were minding our own business, listening to music, relaxing, and drinking Pat O’s Bloody Marys when Debauche came on stage. We had no idea who they were, but by the looks of them, it was obvious this was going to be good.
It was so good, it was bad.
Debauche is a “Russian Mafia Band” that plays Russian folk music… but it’s not what you think.
We were sitting about 10 rows back, watching a scattered few dance amidst a mellow crowd. People slowly started filling in and blocking the view. And before we knew it, we were up with the entire crowd, jumping around and dancing. There was an energy in the air, a sort of frenzied celebration. That’s really no surprise– every song makes you want to jump up and down like you’re doing the hora at a bar mitzvah. Little do you know that you are rejoicing to a song that is probably about some sad, violent mafia story.
So have you ever watched True Blood? Remember Maryanne, the Maenad, from Season 2? She used her powers to control people and make them believe she was a goddess, worshiping her and taking part in complete primal chaos. At the height of her power, she possessed everyone, turning the whole town of Bon Temps into a gluttonous orgy of sex, drugs, alcohol, and violence. They were insatiable, and they loved it. In this moment, we were like the people of Bon Temps. The more we watched this band the more we were slipping under its spell, and we couldn’t get enough. Okay, so this wasn’t quite the orgy they had in Bon Temps, but Debauche did mesmerize the crowd, and it turned into an orgy of total party debauchery. We were possessed by Debauche, and it got wild… er, minus any obvious sex, drugs, and violence, of course.It was the lead singer’s gritty voice belting out Russian lyrics; the bearded bassist banging on his instrument; a rocking accordion and violin, and a few other guys this short girl couldn’t see; and the exuberant Ay-Lay-Lay-Lay’s that reminded me of a bunch of old drunken Russian men reveling in excitement at a wedding. And, oh yeah, see that lady on the drum? Well, she is multi-talented. She also belly dances. The things she does with her belly are just as freaky and gritty as the lead singer’s voice. Even the busy workers on the roof of the nearby building took a break to ogle her. She was kind of like the dessert at Boucherie. I was so excited by everything else that was going on that I forgot to take a picture of her dancing. Plus, her moves were indeed the icing on this sweet, sweet cake.
Thank you, Debauche, for showing me a great time.
I think I’ll go have a smoke now.