Nap Eyes – ‘Four More Songs By’

Review by Andrew Patterson

A quadruple threat from Halifax, Nap Eyes make music that is unmistakably their own, yet with a striking mood of familiarity. The melodies feel tattered and comforting, the words feel like a scripture you’d once memorized and since forgotten. The music is slack, but it comes on quickly. The songs roll by in a sing-a-long lull, but have an acute perspicacity powering them.

Here is the best exemplary metaphor I can muster: hearing other pop songs is like watching a spiralling, instantaneous high-dive by a taut and trained olympian. It’s super impressive, but suddenly the athlete is underwater and you have the sense of being cheated somehow, of being unable to perceive exactly what made the feat so impressive. Nap Eyes is the slow motion replay in which you can observe the rotations one by one, appreciate the hard-earned muscle tone and witness all the nuances of the sparkling water droplets. It looks much more glorious this way.

Last November, when they released their first four songs on a self-titled cassette, singer Nigel Chapman’s words felt righteous, sprawling and all-encompassing; a series of feverish, idiosyncratic dreams that typified the peculiarities of life’s emotional corridors. Comparatively, Four More Songs By presents longer songs, deeper explorations and a furthering of Chapman’s inimitable take on modern living. Backed by the familiar thrumming of Nap Eyes’ impeccable players, his wily voice is at once more venomous and more vulnerable, his points of interest further out and further in.

From a coastal town ripe with under-the-radar brilliance, Nap Eyes are the teeth in the mouth of the beast. Rarely seen, formally beautiful, solid and frighteningly sharp.