For Fans Of
Television show/Film soundtrack favourites Rogue Wave are back with their fifth studio album ‘Nightingale Floors,’ with their signature chilled out indie rock staying fairly unscathed. The band like to work off of the "if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it" theory, which doesn’t make for a very exciting progressive story but will keep the fans attentive.
‘No Magnatone’ slides its way in with some atmospheric guitar lines and gentle vocals suggesting that the band intend to play things extremely safe on this record. ‘College’ is the perfect example of this, it is a paint-by-numbers indie rock track, but it does offer up some of the finer melodies on the record. To step back and reflect early on this record is to admit that what Rogue Wave do, they do quite well, it’s just a little bit uninteresting.
The tone of the lyrics has clearly been influenced by the death of frontman Zach Schwartz’s father, as the importance of life and death rule the subject matter. There is also a sad musical tone, even in the more up-beat moments, present throughout the entire record. The melodies and their gentle delivery from Schwartz‘s clean vocals are certainly the highlight of the album, the music does well to support this, especially the swirling building guitar lines of ‘Siren’s Song’, which build up the end hooks incredibly well.
The sounds rarely vary though making it hard to tell these tracks apart, the one exception being ‘Used To It’, which uses a room recording style production which is a little rougher around the edges, like a Abbey Road Beatles feel, which serves the song incredibly well.
The rest of the record really just rides out with slow paced indie numbers, driven by the vocals in songs like ‘When Sunday Morning Comes’ during which the instrumentation phones it in. The record ends on the very slow and dragged out ‘Everyone Wants To Be You’, which once again relies on its vocal work to provide the entertainment, this time supported now and then by some heavily reverberated piano lines using the atmospheric feel present in the first half of the record.
Rogue Wave are capable of some good melodies but have played things extremely safe on ‘Nightingale Floors’ making it quite a forgettable addition to their catalogue. Indie rock needs to be more exciting than this these days.
1. No Magnatone
3. Figured It Out
4. Siren’s Song
5. The Closer I Get
7. Used To It
8. Without Pain
9. When Sunday Morning Comes
10. Everyone Wants To Be You