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Big No No - All My Lies (Birds Records)

17 February 2024

I was going to say that “All My Lies,” the new one from Stockholm quartet Big No No, sounds like an echo of the nineties. But that would be to understate just how (warning: oxymoron alert) forward-thinkingly nostalgic the song is – if such a thing is even possible. No, this IS the nineties or at least a sonic love letter to the indie music of that era.

It goes even further than that. 90s indie was weighed down with Brit-pop swagger and lad culture, self-congratulatory back slapping and underground indie-kid as tabloid celebratory nonsense, so much so that it took its eye off what it could be. “All My Lies” is the sound of what it could have been. What it should have been.

Big No No zips through the indie landscape with infectiousness and energy, almost to euphoric extents. The bass lines are buoyant. The beats are the perfect marriage of the tasteful and the technical. The guitars wander between soulful, sunshine riffs and rock-infused wig-outs. And the vocals are deft and delicate, dancing lightly over the top of the music. The chorus is instantaneous and addictive while the verses add some dynamics and breathing space.

In short, it is brilliant. Everything doing its job and doin it well and everything that an indie hit is about; in fact, they should be using this song as a teaching aid in music schools. Poised, polished, purposeful, pop-infused. Perfect.