ON THE RECORD
By The WAEVE
This is The WAEVE’s eponymous debut album, released via Transgressive Records. It’s a collection of 10 tracks from two unique musical voices and songwriters Graham Coxon and Rose Elinor Dougall. A couple of songs in, it’s clear that the mood of the album is sombre, dark even, as seen in the first single Can I Call You – “I’m tired of being in love, I’m sick of being in pain”. The track starts as a ballad and Graham’s guitar solo transforms it to a rock song with electronic elements. Drowning begins with a piano intro, which is reminiscent of ripples on a lake. Whether it’s deliberate or not can’t be said. However, it offers artistic imagery. Someone Up There has a different sound from most other songs in the album. It’s fast paced, for one, the successive drumbeats creating this sense of urgency. On it, Graham insists, “I don’t care what you say man/I’m being watched by someone up there”. All Along stands out, with Rose’s velvety voice complementing Graham on cittern, a medieval folk lute.
Both, Graham and Rose are known for their individual styles and talent. Together, they make a promising duo and it will be interesting to see what they create in the time to come.
My 21st Century Blues
Released via Human Re Source, My 21st Century Blues is essentially a club anthem further elevated by British singer and songwriter Raye’s enigmatic vocals. A feminine voice that’s irresistible and at the same time fierce works brilliantly for the theme explored in the album – overcoming heartbreak.
On Hard Out Here, Raye resigns to the fact: “See for girls like me from the bottom of the tier/Believe that it’s always been hard out here”. But she immediately follows it with: “Baby, I bounce, baby, I bounce, baby, I bounce back”.
Escapism sucker punches you when you realise that it’s the ridiculously popular TikTok sound – “The man that I love sat me down last night/And he told me that it’s over, dumb decision”.
Black Mascara, a guaranteed dance floor hit, combines a sombre theme with upbeat music, creating an irony that’s hard to resist. Symbolising an undefeated spirit, it’s one of those on-loop numbers.
Flip A Switch comes as a warning to anyone daring to cross a line. Raye knows that “You can’t just let your guard down and fall for someone anymore/ That’s what stupid girls do” and Raye’s “been a stupid girl”. The music on this one’s groovy, with the “Ooh, oh no, oh no, no, no, no, no” making you want to play it just one more time.
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