Tuesday, August 11, 2020
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Nature of Wires: Reborn

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Artist: Nature of Wires (@)
Title: Reborn
Format: CD EP
Label: Echozone (@)
Rated: *****
I haven't been this excited about a synthpop band in a long, long time. Maybe you've heard of Nature of Wires, an echo of their beginnings in the early '90s before they faded into obscurity. From the UK (Herefordshire) and originally formed in the 1986 by Gary Watts and Andrew Stirling-Brown, and later joined by Lady B (Sarah Bouchier), they released one now-impossible to find album called 'Modus Operandi' toured a bit, then disappeared. Watts re-emerged in 2015 and teamed up with someone by the name of Countess M. for an album called 'Cyber Rendezvous'(2016). I checked the album out, and it was okay, kind of Gary Numanesque, and the electronically processed vocals of Countess M. sounded more like a guy than a Countess. They weren't particularly strong, but plenty cold and alien. Synthwork was good, but nothing I'd call a hit in the songwriting department. I'd give it a B-. Flash-forward to 2019, Lady B. is back, and so is Andrew Stirling-Brown, and 'Reborn' proves this band is in it for keeps, not just shits and giggles. The opener, "Try" is a killer all the way around, and Lady B.'s vocal recalls the power and glory of Yaz's Alison Moyet. This is EXACTLY what's needed to propel this simple but effective song to the top of the chart. Everything about it screams MEGA-HIT. If it were released in 1983 or so, these folks would be synthpop icons and still collecting royalty checks. Few synthpop songs I’ve heard written in this millennium have this much commercial potential. I’m dead nuts positive that if "Try" were entered in 2019 Eurovision song contest, it would have done way better than Michael Rice's piece of crap that doomed the UK to finish dead last. Not that Nature of Wires is the kind of act that appeals Eurovision's uber-commercial fans and judges, but even they would have had to respect this talent. "Human Nature," the song that follows is almost as good as the opener; the hook isn’t quite as strong, but Lady B's shows a lot of soul in the vocal department. The deeper into this EP, the darker the tracks get, but lose no melodic appeal. "Suffer" is good and does not stray from the formula that has worked so well for the previous tracks. Final track - "Fight" delivers similar quality. All along the way, the synthwork and rhythm by the guys is designed to support, not upstage the vocals, Dark, but not too dark; dance-worthy but not beat-overwhelming; just the right combination of everything. It's almost like this band studied exactly what makes hit material in the synthpop genre, put their own dark spin on it and struck gold. It’s serious, rather than frivolous synthpop, but still serious fun with an emotional kick. This outfit is one to be reckoned with, and I can't wait for the release of their full album 'Modus' this summer.


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