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9-Volt Velvet - Hey, Candy (Shore Dive Records)

30 April 2024

Any right-minded sonic explorer would assume that the worlds of dreamscape shoegazery and more glammed-up rock and roll concerns would be about as far apart on the musical Venn Diagram as it is possible to get. After all, the former is a world of insular intensity, technicality, and walls of sound, the latter more riffy and accessible, sing-along, and anthemic in a more obvious kind of way.

Yet, somehow, they do meet. I suspect that 9-Volt Velvet has possibly built its own personal bridge between the two worlds rather than stumbled upon such a Narnia-like doorway purely by accident, but however they got there it is clear that these two attractive opposites do touch—at least they do on their latest single, “Hey, Candy.”

So, what we get here is the repetitious groove and cavernous guitars of the shoegaze world plus the fist-in-the-air, sing-along anthemics of the foot-on-the-monitor glam world. It shouldn’t work, but by Quatro it works a treat.

Now, I’m not suggesting that people try to emulate this seductive sonic slice. I doubt if there are many that could get the balance right anyway, so why not just savour the moment? I’m just happy I was around to experience this gorgeous glam-gaze happening.

Man, what a time to be alive!

Riptide / Hey, Candy 7 single
Nude Beaches album
CD pre-order (as of May 10)