steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Novi Split

"Keep Moving" CD

Sunset Alliance

Genres: indie pop, lo-fi

Sunset Alliance
PO Box 32048
Mesa AZ 85275

Aug 27 - Sep 3 2004

Keep Moving is yet another original project for Sunset Alliance, that Arizona label that keeps on broadening their field of expertise.  Like Rajiv Patel's Obey The Cattle, this Novi Split disc introduces an entirely different style to the primarily rock-concerned record label.  These songs are much less electric and more personal than the imprint's previous work - each tune has been carefully laid out and recorded on lo-fi equipment, resulting in fifteen distinctly potent pop nuggets.  The songwriting is calm but deceptively intricate - the lyrics, meanwhile, are heartfelt and emotional.  At times the band sounds like Guided By Voices, while at others they tend towards Sparklehorse tendencies.

"The 'Risks'" is a nice example of what Novi Split are capable of when they're on their game.  A close comparison would be Pedro the Lion's "The Longer I Lay Here."  The two songs share the same personal atmosphere, and also have somewhat similar melodies.  Other favourites include the bare-bones "300 Copies" and the very warm, Sparklehorse-tinged "You Sleep, I Drive."  None of the tunes are particularly unpleasant, but only a select few stand out from the rest.  This makes for a listenable album - one you could be inclined to play more than a few times - but not one you're likely to grow attached to.  If enjoyable, lo-fi pop appeals to you, Keep Moving is an obvious choice.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 15 tracks, distributed by the label, released 2003]