Friday 1 March 2013

Wave n400 - Wave n400

EP review by

Apparently the n400 is a part of the brain that reacts to words and other stimuli. We'll have to take their word for that, not being experts in that field of anatomy. Bristol band Wave n400 are therefore attempting, we assume, to provide stimulation to our brains through their music. And, by Jove, they manage to do so on this self-titled EP. The main style is synth-pop that's fairly minimalist in nature but with distinctive vocals that contort words into slightly unusual shapes and it's this that grabs the attention first. There's definitely promise here, especially on the opening couplet of 'Notorious War' and 'Sunblind' which is part modern day electro-pop and part the quirky end of new-wave. The second half of 'Sunblind' in particular is quite a thrill when it gets up and runs.

Overall it's a quirky sounding EP, maybe in part down to the fact that members are from Spain and Australia as well as the influence of the experimental Bristol scene they're now a part of. The pace drops on the beginning of 'Night Light Glows' but they soon pick it up again, seemingly keen to keep our attention, and across this EP they manage to do just that. If they want to go beyond being a cult local band with plenty of support from the blog world and alternative music press then a change is needed but it needn't be a commercial one. You get the suspicion that they'll better songs like 'Equatorial' (although the guitar works well here) and 'Fuss' on future releases without compromising themselves. Or as the late Reg Presley once said during a famous recording session, "put a little bit of fucking fairy dust over the bastard", then they'll be well on their way.

Wave n400's website

Stream or download the EP

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