May 20, 2004

Nice Nice "Chrome"

Noodle noodle noodle noodle noodle noodle...

I wasn't really looking forward to listening to Nice Nice's debut album, Chrome. From the things I'd read about this young band, their musical ideas was a mixture of clanking noise thrown together with everything including the kitchen sink used as an instrument. On first listen, my feelings were confirmed; the sixteen songs on this record proved to be nothing more than clinging and clanging in that indie-rock kind of way, with no real focus.

Of course, in between the time I listened to Chrome and that I sat down to write this review, something happened. I listened to the album again, and the groove that seemed so elusive reappeared. There's a pretty rockin' vibe going on here, one that borders on funk--take a listen to "Nein" or "Pulp" and tell me they're not trying to get funky--but really, should you expect anything less than noise rock from a band who lists pots & pans and garbage cans as their instruments and who states that "there are no overdubs on this recording?"

Something tells me that Nice Nice are a band best experienced live; Chrome is simply a record that's caught up with the idea of being an instrumental funk-rock band, and the magic of improv--and I have the feeling many of these songs are results of jam sessions--just seems to be lost in translation, leaving the listener lost and slightly bored in a sea of instrumental goofing off. It's obvious that the Nice Nice duo of Mark Shirazi and Jason Buehler are good musicians, but the fact that their music is all over the place really clouds that fact. Perhaps with a bit of editing--sixteen instrumentals can be a bit much, even if some of the songs are very brief--Nice Nice could produce a really cohesive, solid musical statement.

--Joseph Kyle

No comments: