I had the pleasure of seeing The Nudge live a week ago (check out that review here), before hearing their debut album Big Nudge Pie this week, which may have slightly ruined the album for me. Playing live, the band are able to spend time exploring their musical ideas, expanding on them and adapting them. Recording doesn’t allow this same flexibility and so the songs seemed to lack some of the spontaneity that made them interesting when heard live.
Despite that, I still enjoyed listening to the album. It’s well recorded (by Lee Prebble at the Surgery in Wellington) and has a really rich, lush sound that suits their style of retro-blues rock extremely well. At times you can almost imagine that you’re listening to a recording from the 60’s.
Big Nudge Pie gets better as it progresses and by track 3, It All Becomes Clear, it hits its stride. That song, and the one that follows it, Come Home, would be my top picks – to the point that I ended up putting those two songs on repeat for a while when I first put the album on.
The use of an organ in some of the songs lends a point of difference over other bands making similar sounds and adds to that old fashioned feel that permeates the song writing here – at times seeming to channel Hendrix, or even the Doors, along with a voice that wouldn't be all that out of place on a dusty porch in Mississippi sometime early last century.
Some of the songs do take a little while to get going and others do just revolve around one or two ideas, but if you’re into authentic, bluesy rock and think you might enjoy music made by people with a predilection for dressing in animal costumes and having a good time, then Big Nudge Pie should be on your playlist; it’s sure on mine.
The Nudge are a fresh form of innovative blues.
As a trio, they are all individually inspired by multi genres of music that help to form a complex sound often termed as psychedelic swampy blues with an element of party. The songs have been loosely based around singer Ryan Prebble's style of writing, but as a band they interweave their ideas to create a thick organic sound with unique forms due to their very different musical backgrounds. One thing that is however certain, this is music for the soul and the feet!