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Vocalists Shourov Bhattacharya and Parvyn Singh from The Bombay Royale, performing live during globalFEST at Webster Hall in New York City on Jan. 12, 2014. (Ebru Yildiz for NPR)

The Bombay Royale: globalFEST 2014

Jan 16, 2014

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In The Bombay Royale, even the secondary musicians wear masks. The Bombay Royale's founder, saxophonist Andy Williamson, is "The Skipper." Vocalists Shourov Bhattacharya and Parvyn Singh from The Bombay Royale, performing live Sunday during globalFEST at Webster Hall in New York City.

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It's not often that a band composed of stock characters can be a successful live act, so one that boasts "The Mysterious Lady," "The Tiger" and "The Skipper" — all, of course, in costume — might make a newcomer think the shtick is more enjoyable than the music.

But The Bombay Royale, an 11-piece Australian band making its U.S. debut at globalFEST, seems happy to evoke memories of everything from the Village People to formulaic Bollywood romances of the 1970s (in which the music was anything but formulaic). The group crams vintage Indian film music, 1960s surf tunes and blazing horns into a set of sly covers and wry originals — all tailor-made for a screwball caper flick that's yet to be shot.

SET LIST:

  • "Monkey Fight Snake"
  • "You Me Bullets Love"
  • "Disco Bot"
  • "Wild Stallion Mountain"
  • "Bunty Bunty"
  • "Phone Baje Na"
  • "Bombay Twist"
  • "Henna Henna"
  • "Solla Solla"
  • "Dum Maro Dum"
  • "Bobbywood"
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