Album Review


Cinematic in scope, often luscious in its arrangements, it’s a singular gem.

‘The WAEVE’, this self-titled debut from the pairing of Blur guitarist Graham Coxon and journeywoman songwriter Rose Elinor Dougall is a curious collection of contrasts. Most notably, that between the protagonists’ own voices; Rose’s a strong, smooth and often deep one with an almost RP accent; Graham’s his signature twang, faltering and vulnerable. The rough and the smooth rub up against each other - the squall of Graham’s guitar juxtaposed against slick brass, soaring strings or - in the case of ‘Undine’ - appearing just as the lyrical content threatens to veer into soppy territory. A contrast between Graham’s perceived persona - spiky, contrary, a man who refused to participate once Blur’s exploration of pop culture’s depths went too far - and the lyrics he’s boldly presenting here (“Find the right dream / Taking a chance on forever”). That said, the duo know when to complement each other, too: ‘Drowning’ makes like its title, its layered cacophony creating aural overwhelm. And the clear highlight, ‘Someone Up There’, revels in its convergence: whirring guitars, a punkish bassline and an ‘ooh ooh ooh’ chorus refrain of “You’ve lost your power / It’s all gone sour.” Cinematic in scope, often luscious in its arrangements, it’s a singular gem.

Tags: The WAEVE, Reviews, Album Reviews

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