January 07, 2002

theStill "Nectar"

I have nothing but love in my eyes for DC's Slumberland stars the Ropers, who put out some really killer records They ended way too soon, and many pop fans such as myself bemoaned their ending. Now its several years later, and we now have theStill, featuring most of the Ropers. Instead of the Pale Saints worship, theStill have a West Coast Experimental Pop Band meets Velvet Underground meets Pale Saints kind of sound, and, man, it sounds great!

At first glance, this record seems to have a Stones Sticky Fingers thing going with the packaging...I winced. Then I put it on, and....well, the first three songs were nice, but I wasn't really grooving to this. And then..by "ready now,"something hit me....and it wasn't just the smell of charcoal fluid burning and seeping into my room....there it was...that magic...that glimpse...the ropers! There it was, in a different form, but there was that magic that I loved and longed for and missed oh so much. It's like loving your wife or husband's smile and then when your first kid is born, and one day the kid smiles his or her smile, and you just know it's that magic that you loved being passed on. It took a couple of kicks, but if you really loved the Ropers, within one listen, you'll be grooving on theStill.

Now there's not as much noisy shoegazing going on here; it's not as lush as the Ropers, and, in places, Nectar almost sounds like demos. The songs are also short--very short. I don't think any part of this album runs over four minutes, but it's not the length, it's the quality; theStill never wont for a quality mix of psych and garage, with a touch of shoegazing.

If the album's greatness doesn't knock you over, don't feel alone. The first time I listened to this, I though it was nice, but not particularly memorable. I popped it on the other day for the first time in months, and it was a different listening experience. Maybe, after having to hear crap like The Strokes and BRMC, you realize that these guys aren't trying to knock over the world with their fashion sense, but simply want to make good music. Nectar is a good little beginning to what could be a promising career for these already-proven-their-talent guys. Keep it up!

--Joseph Kyle

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