Pardon me, but I couldn”t help noticing you from across this sullen, smoky room. Would you perhaps allow me to drape you in a few songs about romance, sadness, and moonlight?

Does your heart ache for someone to croon you off to Casablanca? Tonight at the Magic Bag, British loungers Cousteau will try and soothe all your romantic woes.

From the sleazy dives of London, Cousteau is the modern answer to Burt Bacharach. They know the pangs of romance and lost innocence while somehow avoiding the cheese of something like “The Way We Were.” Cousteau makes its money by deftly creating mood through music. Their woozy single, “The Last Good Day of the Year” builds an autumnal sense of uncertainty and change mixed with the fatalism of an approaching winter. The tune rises slowly and lingers like waves at low tide, concluding with the afterthought, “Don”t know where I end and where you begin.”

This kind of mood painting is always best seen live. Singer Liam McKahey”s silky baritone was made for a dive bar or a club. You will sigh gently, if not for nostalgia, then for simple difference. Cousteau is not playing for the masses, yet they feel the “encouraging” results from stateside audiences. Songwriter and pianist, Davey Ray Moor, told the Daily, “I think Americans appreciate a kind of athleticism or craft in music.” Perish any thought of egotism the soft-spoken Moor is the last to dwell on the band”s grasp of moody music. “We”re just big music fans We want to plug the gap in our own record collections.” Isn”t that what it”s all about?

For their bluesy, lounge cat style, Cousteau are a complete package. If you dig this deal, strut your stuff over to the Bag tonight and get a little swoony.

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