Novo Amor: 'Woodgate, NY' EP review

I fell in love with Novo Amor before the intro of 'From Gold' had even finished, I didn't need confirmation of British born Ali Lacey's voice to seal the deal, I was sold. Being a fan of Justin Vernon (Bon Iver) and similar artists like James Vincent McMorrow and William Fitzsimmons, this EP perfectly exacerbates my desire for high pitched, dreamy indie folk; It's the sort of music you debate life decisions over late at night.

[Published in Latitude Lookout magazine in 2016]

The opening track 'From Gold' is a perfect start to the record. Consisting of a plucky repetitive melody, it leaves just enough room for Lacey to use his imagination with his voice. However, this is my least favourite track; put simply, it is too upbeat for my liking. The rest of this EP has a very evening feel to it, and 'From Gold' came across as more of a bright and summery tune I don't want to relate to late at night.

'Weather' - the records second song - is atmospherically juxtaposed from the EP's starting point, consisting of subtle drum rolls and a simple yet effective guitar melody that compliments Lacey's heavenly voice. For me, the EP starts here, and leaves me wanting so much more...

It was track number three that really helped me relax and escape the day. 'Cold' is a slow paced, vocally driven track that is so peaceful I don't know how I made it through without drifting into a sleep... I'll blame it on the heavy last chorus that woke me back up. The soft introduction and verse are well contrasted to the more drum heavy choruses, and all the gaps are subtly filled with subdued guitar twangs that take my imagination to the sea. However, it doesn't shape up compared to the EP's final song...

'Holland' is by far the strongest song on the record. The first lyric, 'Hollow', shimmers heavenly between left and right in the headphones. With empty guitar strums, waves of noise and radiantly layered vocals, 'Holland' really does define Novo Amor as more than just a Bon Iver sound-a-like. I personally can't get enough of him.