Life right now feels as if we were just served the nastiest shot of well tequila, without even a lime to chase it. But Yacht Rock Revue offer an optimistic solution in their new song “Bad Tequila”: “When life gives you bad tequila, make a good margarita.” It’s just the right state of mind — and soundtrack — for this quarantined Cinco de Mayo.
The Atlanta-based band, best known for their note-perfect live renditions of smooth Seventies jams like “Brandy,” “What a Fool Believes,” and “Rich Girl,” released their first full-length album of original material, Hot Dads in Tight Jeans, in February. With its pithy, made-for-merch chorus, “Bad Tequila” is an irresistible highlight and, musically, proves Yacht Rock Revue to be more than just a party band in cheesy costumes. The song’s sumptuous production and atmospheric vibe evokes modern-day acts like Portugal. the Man, Daft Punk and Tame Impala.
“We finished recording this album and were mixing it in spring and summer, and that’s when Tame Impala started to leak tracks from their new album,” singer Nick Niespodziani told Rolling Stone. “They were really similar to the sounds we had on our record, and that made me feel really encouraged, that the sound that we had was not going to be throwaway or irrelevant.”
Still, the bandmates can’t fully resist their comedy instincts. In the video for “Bad Tequila,” and in a just-released faux talk-show sketch, the group run headlong into the schlocky aesthetic of cable-access programs, embracing the green-screen backdrops that have once again become ubiquitous in the age of Zoom meetings and concerts.
Along with the “Bad Tequila” comedy shorts, Yacht Rock Revue have been hosting their own social-distancing livestreams. Last month, they teamed up with yacht-rock vet Robbie Dupree for a version of his “Hot Rod Hearts,” and on Tuesday at 5 p.m. ET, Niespodziani will host a Cinco de Mayo happy hour and Q&A to tee up YRR bassist Greg Lee’s livestream gig at 6 p.m. ET.