SoftSpot | Nous EP
Most likely to: start a photo Tumblr that contains pictures of turtles, libraries, abandoned buildings, light passing through leaves in a tree, pages from occultist manuscripts and triangles.
SoftSpot’s Nous EP is a sublime, ethereal and gorgeous take on Brooklyn’s burgeoning crop of New Age indie rock. Nous fails to identify itself in the 20 minutes allotted and so becomes 3 tracks of unfocused art. A virus of musical concepts infects SoftSpot’s artistic potential.
Ideas are the infectious, overwhelming and awesome (in the truest sense) dictators of our collective mind. A single idea drove Don Quixote into madness; it took Cervantes just under 1,000 pages to tell his story. Is it possible to express yourself as an artist in 20 minutes? Hardly, it is a dictionary definition of quixotic. Nous is not a bad album, but SoftSpot need more time and ambition to define what will set them apart. The last eight minutes of Nous might be the one time SoftSpot proves me wrong.
“Notorious Debris” is said eight-minute standout track, the one track with single-mindedness in conceptual vision. The track is a determined effort in expressing Sarah Kinlaw’s astounding cadence—her primal yelps in the track’s climax are chilling. Bryan Wade Keller Jr. showers the listener with a glistening guitar waterfall, working equally hard to break your heart as he does to repair the damage. Andrew Spaulding shows supreme capability in his focused drum work. He plays slowly and deliberately here, creating a pulling, searching quality that draws you down until the crescendo where he drives “Notorious Debris” upwards into ecstatic completion.
SoftSpot make a noble attempt at defining their musicianship in Nous, but is that possible in a 20-minute span? It recently took Anthony Gonzales a double album to express his ideas on dreams in M83’s Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming. SoftSpot has potential, plenty of it, so I am excited to hear their ideas take form in a full length with my whiskey.
Listen to “Notorious Debris” below: