Published on August 3rd, 2018

Haute Tension

Change is good. Imagine a world in which we’re grooving to the likes of the Tea Set, the Salty Peppers and the Weak Heart Drops — and then thank the musical heavens that those outfits instead became Pink Floyd, Earth, Wind & Fire and the Clash, respectively. As sound evolves, so, too, do band names.

Take Haute Tension, the band formerly known as Mo’Booty, as further proof of evolution — from surf-ish, guitar-driven pop punk to compositions fleshed out through myriad influences such as French new wave, decent top 40 and lo-fi home recordings.

“We saw a street sign that read ‘haute tension’ while touring in France last summer and were inspired by the concept of a reference to Booty’s [a.k.a. Alexandre Merbouti] French and Algerian heritage,” bassist Monica McGivern tells PureHoney, “as well as the general high tension of past and present world issues.”

As the band approached its third birthday and the release of its debut album, a new name beckoned. And while a lot has changed, the drive that animates McGivern and guitarist Merbouti has not. They’ve embodied the will-play-anywhere DIY spirit that keeps South Florida’s music scene afloat.

“There is this feeling of setting a clean slate with the new name but in a way it gives a sense of clarity and allows us to push ourselves forward in a more focused way,” says McGivern.

Haute Tension has company in recent rebranding with a couple of other bands: Las Nubes (nee Smvt) and Glass Body (the Water Colors). The coincidence has yielded plans for a merry triple-booking of “The Formerlies,” together for one night, date pending, as part of Haute Tension’s grand, ambitious micro-tour of greater Miami. The  forthcoming “31 Concerts in 31 Days in Dade” will precede U.S. and Europe dates in support of the debut album.

On tour, McGivern and Merbouti will be joined by drummer Nabedi Osorio whereas  the LP features new addition Cody Mentelos on the skins. “We will always continue to evolve as a band,” says McGivern, “and now that the first album is recorded, that leaves us room to experiment with something new.”

Haute Tension perform at Bumblefest on September 8. They also throw a record release party on August 31 at Sweat Records in Miami to wrap up their 31 concerts in 31 days serieshautetensionband.com ~ Abel Folgar

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