For the Savoy-Doucte Cajun Band, mainstream needn't have ever occurred. Their accordio / fiddle / guitar lineup has warded off amplification, modernization, and cross-genre diversification for the past 22 years (despite some members feeding contemporary cravings on the side via the crossover band BeauSoleil or the recent Evangeline Made dics). While regionalized musics of yesterday are today submitting more and more to the promiscuous temptation of stylistic co-mingling (Cajun music included), this trio sticks to their traditionalist vow of celibacy. Or, as succinctly put by the band: "We are regressive rather that progressive." Marc Savoy (accordion, vocals), wife Ann (guitar, frequent lead vocals), and Michael Doucet (fiddle, vocals) are today's old-world masters, as were mentoring heroes like Dennis McGee, D.L. Menard, Lionel LeLeux, and Austin Pitre before them. Very danceable proof resides in this "Best Of," with songs that hark back to another era or pre-aged originals that wish they did. Billowing fiddle and steel-belted accordion telepathically devetail and then instigate solo breaks that dart above crosscut guitar vamps. These "live" and studio performances sport the same natural spontaneity and spirited freedom as those Saturday morning jams at the Savoy's Music Center in Enice, LA. Waltzes revolve in circular beauty, one- and two-steps leave clouds of dust (an unstoppable live "Amede Two Step" included), and blues drip melancholy (like "Pretty Pink Cheeks"). And so tradition is safe in these preservationist hands, with as pure an all-acoustic, all-Cajun French vision of Acadian music as you'll find in the 21st century.

- Paul-Emile Comeau, Dirty Linen