Zweng - Needle
Don't get me wrong, this EP is not going to break new musical boundaries, taking you where no one has gone before. That is not the point. What will happen, though, is that you will discover that a combination of influences can be drawn together in a new and interesting way to create something which, on the surface sounds familiar, yet underneath is very far removed from it. It has a nice lo-fi feel to it though it is clear that effect is created rather than grown organically from the paucity of professional production.
Straight away, the clearest connection you can make is with Prince. It is indefinable, but it is as if the Purple One had decided to play the music he wanted to play, anonymously, to see if anyone would still like him. The opening, title track, brings with it a sense of Death Cab for Cutie, perhaps even Yo La Tengo as well, and kicks off the EP with a sombre sounding voice and acoustic guitar which gradually morphs into a brighter track with a light and airy feel carrying with it still a hint of something menacing. "Morning After" brings out the best in Ryan Zweng's voice and has probably the best lyrics of the three tracks on the EP. "City Something" is probably the best of the three overall. Vocal harmonies lead into a track which, heavy in echo, gradually builds into an almost anthemic song which has something of the Built to Spill about it and has the feel of a lonely night wandering the still busy streets.
In the end, you are left wanting a bit more than the EP offers in only three tracks. There is some good music here, music which prompts the listener to search out more by the band. This is not your usual bog-standard indie rock and for that really deserves a wider audience.
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