craft-spells

A product of Jack Vallesteros’ bedroom tinkering, Craft Spell’s debut album, 2011’s ‘Idle Labour’, mixed synthetic drums and layered reverb into an inspired collection of lo-fi dream pop. ‘Nausea’ distances itself from its predecessor’s muted mystery by taking a more full bodied approach to arrangement, but loses some clarity and charm in the process.

The first half of the album holds most of the highs, from the lush twinkling orchestration of ‘Nausea’ and the softly swirling chorus of ‘Changing Faces’, to the delicate piano breaks on ‘Dwindle’ and ‘Twirl’’s gentle garage-rock crescendo. But by the halfway mark there’s the nagging suspicion you’ve heard this before only in a more engaging effort from the likes of Washed Out or Wild Nothing.

‘Breaking The Angle Against The Tide’ aside, the album’s second half meanders too long, its lack of definition leaving what could have been a gareat EP as a flawed album. While its early highs are enough to stave off the titular nausea, the second half might leave you feeling like a narcoleptic.

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