Cloud 9 – The Violet Nines (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

As this song kicks in it somehow reminds me of that strange retro vibe that crops up in The Flaming Lips music from time to time. But whereas they are trying to be arty and ironic The Violet Nines seem more honest, making a sound that comes naturally to them rather than delivering such smooth grooves with a knowing wink to the elitist and snobbish student audience.

But it’s an interesting set of influence at work here none-the-less, part modern pop-rock, part soul soaked retro-vibes,  a future-past hybrid of sultriness and sass and a million miles away from the college common room of the aforementioned bands fanbase. It’s smooth and sensual but it is also confident and commercial, the perfect pitch between chart territory and a more interesting, more underground roots world. I keep using the “S” word and technically the band aren’t a soul band at all but, as the word suggests, there is something less tangible, more mystical about those four simple letters and this song has it in spades. But don’t go looking for it in what is actually being played, or the musical hallmarks that people associate with the genre, the soul coming from this band needs to be absorbed by osmosis. Which, if you ask me, is the only way to access it anyway.

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