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Nudge – As Good As Gone [Kranky]

October 1, 2009

The fearless comedown, a stalling sunset or the post-orgasmic yawn before the candles are blown out (or lights are switched off for all you long-term relationshippers who haven’t seen a drop of melting wax since the honeymoon period ended – I feel your pain), As Good As Gone, Nudge’s second full-length album, captures the warmth of blissfully fading away.

From the opening chords of lazy harmonica and the breathy, hazy vocals that barely shudder through the mist of ‘Harmo’, Nudge are like a pillowy raft, slowly and lovingly drifting along under warm rays of the sun, cooled by the perfect breeze.

Which is perfect, because it’s a Sunday and I’m suffering from the ultimate hat-trick hangover (drinking three nights in a row) so I’m tired, underfed and emotional. And nothing could be more suitable to calm my mood than the mystically blended sound of As Good As Gone wafting past my earlobes.

Digitally created sounds extend a peaceful hand to their instrumental counterparts, deep basslines making up the downy foundation for all the other layers to lay back on. Elements of trip-hop, dub and space-age electronica are woven together into the softest cashmere.Brian Foote, the integral core of the Los Angeles based collective, expertly revealing intricate patterns in the process. Valet, the moniker of already perfectly-named singer Honey Owens, trickles her vocals on to the track like – yeap you guess it – that gooey stuff made by bees dripping off a warm slice of toast.

‘Two Hands’ is the winner of the collection, sweetly warped, the showcase piece for Foote’s digital with analog melting pot. The distinctly gothic ‘Aurolac’ takes their sound for a séance, chorally enticing otherworldly characters out of their lair.

Nudge only needs seven tracks to create what Ibiza Chillout compilations fail miserably at with two twenty-track discs: an organic lull, a slowing of your heart rate and a shiver down your spine.

[Originally reviewed for Bearded Magazine]

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