Nantes – Limbo

by Riley Fitzgerald

nantes_limboBlending cold post-punk and alternative rock Sydney four piece Nantes deliver their best material to date on their new mini album Limbo.

Comprised primarily of core members David Rogers (bass/vocals) and Josiah Eastwood (keys/ guitar/vocals) Nantes begun after a few bedroom recordings sessions amongst friends drew some attention of triple J Unearthed listeners. Things quickly gained momentum when the band dropped their self-titled EP in 2011 and landed prominent festival gigs such as Parklife, Big Day Out and Peat’s Ridge Festival. After some uncertainty following the 2013 release of their synthy sophomore EP Beingsbeing the band decided to take the plunge with another EP. Recorded in Sydney Limbo was mixed by Tony Doogan (Belle and Sebastian and Mogwai) in Glasgow and mastered by Abbey Road mainstay Frank Arkwright of (Blur, Mogwai and Joy Division) in London.

Limbo solidifies the band’s reputation as music lovers who aren’t afraid to do their own thing. While the icey post-punk synth on tracks like Avid from Beingsbeing may have hinted at the transition of the band towards a new sonic direction, there is an unmistakably darker and heavier vibe which sets Limbo apart from the band’s uplifting and poppier early singles Charlie and Fly. While analogy could be made to bands like Radiohead andInterpol Nantes don’t play it too close to their influences.

Jos Eastwood has noted that this effort is [a] more cohesive and focused outing than [the] previous EP and it shows with driving bass, vocal drones, foreboding backing vocals and [an] overall air of apathy pervading the tracks and tying the EP together. First track 7 is a churning riff driven number which sets the tone of things to come. Static energetically continues on, working in atmospheric synth elements, ominous descending piano lines and chorus vocals to tell an embittered tale of the breakdown of a relationship.

Adaptor takes on a bouncier indie rock style reminiscent of The Strokes, an influence drawn upon by the band on single Unsatisfy. Detached melancholy vocals and sinister synth counterbalance the more upbeat instrumental elements, keeping the song in line with the darker tone of Limbo. A floating slow groove drives standout track Stay the Same which oscillates between a crashing guitar driven chorus and verses swathed in layered synths and glitchy vocals while building towards an overpowering crescendo. Gloomy track Reimagineweaves together thundering drums, droning vocals, fuzzy synth and seriously heavy guitar licks into a woeful and fatalistic narrative. The wavy guitars and shimmering washed-out synth tones cogently take things out on surprisingly a warmer tone for closer 1199.

Limbo sees the band take some imaginative and original choices which succeed in bringing together five distinctive, original and altogether great tracks.


Courtesy of The Happy Blog



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