Hadal EP

Written by: TL on 28/01/2014 22:00:16

"Nest is a rock band from Nashville, TN who purposely chose a name that made it impossible for people to Google them". Such reads the first sentence describing this young band on their label Broken Circles' website, and I guess when you list influences like Mew, The Appleseed Cast, Low, Sebadoh and Sainthood Reps among your influences, getting comfortable as an underground act is probably in the cards for you anyway. Listening to the band's second EP "Hadal" however, I'm hard pressed to pick up elements gleaned from any bands but the latter of the ones mentioned, and frankly if you had told me that these songs were mellower b-sides or demos from Sainthood Reps - or perhaps even more likely, from Citizen - then I would have believed you in a heartbeat.

Both of those bands are pretty good though, yet I am a bit disappointed to not hear a more eclectic sound based on the references that caught my eye. However, the band has picked up the sounds and the atmosphere of the whole down-beat, post-Brand New's "Devil And God" sub-genre well enough, implementing them in the five tracks on this EP quite confidently and convincingly, at first sounding no noticeably less experienced than either of the similar bands that are ahead of them by an album or two at this point.

What I regret to inform you though, is that "Hadal" exhibits an even stronger degree of a problem I also felt haunted a band like The Republic Of Wolves on their first album "Varuna". Simply: You keep waiting for the band to take the atmosphere to some climax or conclusion and they never really do. There are subtle developments in the striking- and strumming patterns built into songs like "Hands In A Hole" and "Father Adder" to give some sense of direction, and the vocals do switch ever typically from mutter to croon, but a sense of resolution is never really found, as the guitars noodle ever on and the songs continue to feel meandering.

This is symptomatic for the four songs on the EP (track four out of five, "Lamia (Lakeside)" is an interlude of less than a minute). I get the impression that the idea has been to offer an alternative to the Citizen's and Daylight's and Basement's of today that's more progressive, more dreamy and less screamy, but in perfect honesty I don't think the experiments on "Hadal" discover anything sufficiently profound to act as a substitute for the urgency those other bands resort to in their dynamics. And while it is not Nest's fault alone, isn't this whole style starting to feel just a little derivative and oversaturated right around now? I feel like I could easily list at least a dozen bands that have emerged over the past two years that sound similar to this, and while the "Hadal" EP isn't a bad listen per se, I could just as easily pick songs off any of those other band's records that beat any of those offered here. If you're still hungry for more though, definitly check out Nest, only allow me to hope that they'll refine their individuality and their songwriting to a more exciting level on future records.


Download: Father Adder, Hands In A Hole
For The Fans Of: Citizen, Sainthood Reps, The Republic Of Wolves (on "Varuna")

Release Date 14.01.2014
Broken Circle Records

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