Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Novella - Change Of State

Novella are one of the most consistent alternative guitar bands that Britain currently has to offer. Consistent to the extent that each track they play generates a landscape not entirely dissimilar in quality, texture and variation from the last. It's the layering process that make listening to their albums an experience akin to surrendering to a hypnotised state for the listener, (they actually use the phrase 'feel like I'm hypnotised'  themselves at one point, so it seems it's at least partially deliberate).

Of course the spell they conjure up is by no means unprecedented. Think Stereolab, Broadcast, Jane Weaver and Pram in particular,but for me with Novella the original template always seems to be Wire's glorious Map Ref 41 Degrees N 93 Degrees West one of the finest four minutes in art rock history which seemed to lay down the stones for the road that Novella make their way down on Change of State, their second album, just out.

In a way it's not a hugely different record from its predecessor, 2015's Land. It's merely a thickening and refinement of the ingredients and recipe there. As I suggested, one track very much merges into the next but this is a definitive strength here rather than a weakness. Fine record!

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