It’s ridiculous, I’m 43 and this sort of music is for nice girls who keep diaries, not me. But I want more. Now.
Let me say one thing to start with. I’m slightly disappointed with this EP. I appreciate this is raw pop music, no overdubs, no affectations and as such really captures NV at their real honust injun best. It’s one of their trump cards, their unaffected, good lad charm.
Let me say something else before you think I don’t dig Nouveau Vélo’s new EP. I’m pissed because in that overbearing “reviewer knows best” way I think there’s so much more to come from them and I want to hear it now, now, now. Because next week I could be locked away in a Buddhist monastery or summat, listening to the sound of my own thoughts. Stranger things have happened. This EP is just not enough; it’s still the work of a band finding their way. And in a way I sort of wish they’d blown it, made something far worse, a dark folk LP, or nothing at all. Because like a randy vicar at the WI cake bake off, you’re never going to get what you want with what’s in front of you. The interlude Surfing drives you mad cos’ it’s just a riff when it could be a massive track; not hearing Rolf’s vox on Like A Sun is also maddening. Too many things are maddening here.
I’m mostly pissed because what you are listening to is, potentially, one of the truly great pop bands who can put a smile on everyone’s faces, wash away all cares in that way that only great pop music can. And I mean great. They have such, such a knack for writing brilliant melodies - they can mix up savage essays and guitar runs with the sort of nostalgic wistful sounds not heard for years, or so it seems. This band could if they so tried make a record like Murmur, or the Feelies’ first one, or even Words of Love, ferfuckssakes.. and pull it off. I demand a longer record, I demand a bigger sound from Niek when I hear that driving riff in Kite, where he just pulls and pulls at the sonic umbilical chord that links you with those aching teen memories…, I demand to hear Rolf’s vox and feed off his lost boy vibe in Asleep or Aurora. Can’t they see how close they are to emulating songs like Made of Stone? I demand that I hear Bart’s bass runs expressed with more clarity and weight, especially on that utterly magic bit in Nostalgia where the bass turns the song on a sixpence and then underscores that beautiful tail out, making everything crystalline and otherworldly. It’s ridiculous, I’m 43 and this sort of music is for nice girls who keep diaries, not me. But I want more. Now.