La Monja Enana
La Monja Enana's chic, synth-kissed indie pop tunes hark back to the '80s and early '90s, and seem to draw as much inspiration from new wave (Altered Images are a good touchstone here) as they do from indie pop (Stereolab, Saint Etienne).
Ana, Juan, and Julia formed La Monja Enana in Spain in 1997; Julia would leave the group shortly after they recorded their first demo. The demo tape made its way onto heavy rotation on Spain's Radio 3, and La Monja Enana, now a duo, were signed to Elefant Records soon after. The buzz surrounding this demo tape was considerable; listeners to Radio 3's Diaro Pop program selected La Monja Enana's demo as the best of 1999. The duo's first single, "Pideme un Deseo," was released that summer; the disc would go on to be selected as Melody Maker's single of the week in January 2000. The hype surrounding La Monja Enana grew over the next year; songs from the band's first single made their way onto John Peel's radio show, they appeared on several compilations (including a compilation put out by March Records), and the duo played a string of gigs in Russia. Ana married Felipe, formerly of Los Fresones Rebeldes, in the spring of 2002; the newlyweds debuted their new band, Cola Jet Set, the day after they were married. La Monja Enana's second single, "Un Cadaver Que Abre un Ojo," was released on Elefant that fall. It would be the last new release La Monja Enana would have for a while. Over the next six years, the duo played a smattering of shows and released an odds-and-sods disc, Un Secret Terrible (released in France on La Bulle Sonore), in 2005; Ana also dedicated quite a bit of energy to working on Cola Jet Set's first recordings. The duo's very first full-length album, Humo y Espejos, was released in the spring of 2008. ~ Margaret Reges, Rovi