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Revulva - Single Review: This Town

17 Feb 2023 // A review by Cathy Elizabeth
A flute and muted trumpet herald in what sounds to be the start of a jewel-heist movie, then a cool but suspicious voice speaks out from behind the brim of a tilted hat, leaning in the doorway; “There’s tumbleweeds on the ground, recently I’ve found, this town, is like the wild west”.

Sassy, sophisticated, and street-smart are words that spring to mind upon giving Revulva’s latest single This Town a spin. This truly talented bunch of Poneke musicians have weaved their magic and their humour through this track, and together with Surgery Studios and Downbeat Mastering, have produced a bit of a masterpiece, I feel.

It’s a light-hearted take on some serious but relatable subject matter; dating in a small town. And let’s face it – New Zealand is a small country, so I’m sure we’ve all been there!

This Town tackles one of life’s more awkward situations with some of the cleverest lyrics I’ve come across; “He’s chasing her, she’s chasing him, I’m in the bathroom breathing out and breathing in.” At first, I took that to mean - not caring, just over here being alive and stuff … but then I realised that the breathing out and breathing in would be very measured and controlled, possibly while gripping the hand basin with white knuckles. An accurate depiction of the anxiety induced, and the self-soothing measures required to regain enough composure to get back out there and slay like a boss.

Musically the track is superb with an impossibly funky rhythm section, lively percussion and brass, topped off with very nicely arranged keys that add a rich layer of colour to the already beautifully detailed canvas. The breakdown has been dubbed the breakUP, and the singer wonders “Now that we’ve stopped seeing each other, when will we stop seeing each other?”. It’s definitely a fun time. And one that has me moving myself in a weird circular motion. Shoulders will shimmy!

The production on this is really slick, capturing all that detail, yet still managing to add more, without cluttering. Little details like having the keyboard solo sweep from right to left, and then back again on the following phrase, and the trippy delay on the vocal going into the breakdown. Massive!

Revulva are made up of Phoebe Johnson, Lily Rose Shaw, Hector McLachlan, Lennox Grootjans, Toby Leman, Olivia Campion, Zane Hawkins, Hayden Richardson, and Kaito Walley and have been playing together since 2020. Popular on the local music scene and online, Revulva have just wrapped up their nationwide 'This Town Ain’t Big Enough' tour. I’m sure they have increased their fanbase exponentially in the process, and with This Town being single no. 7 for them, Revulva are clearly a hard-working band who are planning on sticking around for a while. Check them out if you get the chance and definitely check out the single. 

Rating: ( 5 / 5 )

About Revulva

Revulva is a femme-lead soul, funk, disco eight-piece hailing from Te Whanganui-a-Tara. Making a scene since 2020, Revulva have been turning heads at their theatrical and epic live shows performing at festivals such as 121 Festival, Tora Bombora, Nest Fest, Welcome To Nowhere, Twisted Frequency among many more.

Revulva released their debut EP Girl's Gotta Eat mid-2022 to rave-reviews and an SRN 'Best EP' nomination. Their last release This Town remained in the NZ SRN and Hot Singles charts for months while the band toured the single up and down the country. Revulva is sitting on a lot of material and are scheming to release it into the world.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Revulva


Girl's Gotta Eat
Year: 2022
Type: EP

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