The Roches: Maggie Roche, Terre Roche, Suzzy Roche.
The Roches' second album, NURDS, made it clear from the very first song that the group had more up its sleeve than its critically heralded debut would have indicated. After that album's ambient quiet (produced by Robert Fripp), the three Roche sisters came out roaring on NURDS (relatively speaking) with a rhythm section comprised of Jay Dee Daugherty (from the Patti Smith Group) and Fred Smith (formerly of Television). The album was produced by Roy Halee, who was Paul Simon's longtime engineer, and features songs that are each given their proper, individual setting. There's the a capella rendition of Cole Porter's "It's Bad for Me"; the raucous melding of '60s girl group singing with CBGB-era raw and spare electric backing on "Bobby's Song"; and an update of the Irish traditional song "Factory Girl." The album closes with Maggie's "This Feminine Position," a track that recalls the warm and strummed sound of the Roches' first release. These three voices are braided together in a manner which is by turns startling soothing.