Los Angeles five piece Neverever is the brainchild of husband and wife Wallace and Jihae Meek, who met some years ago in Glasgow, whilst both were playing with different bands.
To cut a long story short, they got together, decided to start a band and moved to California – which suits their sun drenched pop stylings perfectly.
Neverever are as suited to summer as ice cream and sun screen. Odd then, that album opener ‘Here Is Always Somewhere Else’, begins with the sound of a thunder storm and continues into a morose song which seems to deal with a long distance relationship ‘I was crying half the world away / I was dying to hear you softly say / Don’t you worry about a thing Today’ and as the thunder fades out things begin to get more lively and we’re treated to the the kind of sun tainted pop gems you might expect from a band living in Southern California.
‘Blue Genes’ immediately hooks you in with a vocal akin to 60’s girl groups but a guitar part that owes more to the 80’s and The Smiths. It’s a glorious slice of pop and, I’d wager, the catchiest song about incest ever written ‘He’s her Brother / That’s his Sister / Is it true / I heard he kissed her’.
And from here on the record continues largely in this blueprint; a juxtaposition of 60’s vocals and 70’s and 80’s punk/pop and happily, it works brilliantly.
It’s not often you can hear echoes of The Chiffons, The Ramones, The Cure and The Smiths all beautifully mixed together in one song but Neverever seem to be masters of creating such unlikely cocktails.
‘Coconut Shampoo’, ‘Bitch Boys’, and ‘Teardrop Tattoo’ all recall the aforementioned bands but yet somehow manage to sound fresh and vital at the same time. A cover of The Plimsoul’s ‘Now’ sits very comfortably on this record too, so much so that you could easily believe it was written by them.
Where this album falls down slightly though, is when they attempt to slow things down.
Songs like ‘Young and Dumb’ and ’16th Wonder’ sound as if they came a lot less naturally and as a result, feel awkward and out of place sat amongst the joyous, summery pop on show here.
Even moments like these though, do little to detract from what is a very enjoyable listen.
So if you’ve ever wondered what you would get if you were to take Glasgow and California, pop music of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s and throw it all into a huge melting pot – Angelic Swells is the answer. A record to soundtrack the greatest summer ever.