EP Review – Go Native – Sleep Patterns

Go Native are a fascinating new prospect from Manchester consisting of Nick Toone, Catherine Bebbington, Alex Kirk and Joe Freegard. They are producers of some open and refined synth pop with added grandeur and atmospheric stirring and with those such as New Order’s Peter Hook speaking highly of them, then you’d think they are certainly worth a look. Go Native released their second EP entitled Sleep Patterns on April 5th. The opener; ‘Beaten By Butterflies’ slowly breathes into life as the whirring guitars and gradually joined by trickling synths, sparse percussion, Nick’s whole and highly charged vocal, the silky strings and the undulating bass line. This gives the song great potential for those gentle atmospheric moments but with the ability to generate those dramatic soundscapes which they do with ease. The title track opens with a pop driven purpose with the darting synths and the melodic pop vocals. This is still moulded and crafted to deliver a more profound and effective result with the hanging synths hovering over the pop-like urgency of the drums and the initial synth forays. To have that more thought provoking feel entwined with that infectious rhythm and style is something that should always be applauded. ‘Napoleon’ generates a quick-fire hook with the light pulsating synths that beckon you in with it’s key change and act as a solid foundation for the vocals to fall upon. These hooks and melodies are only enhanced and amplified by the guitars and percussion while the bass line and the combined vocals really whip up that dramatic charge before you latch back on to the songs hook as it comes around again.

‘Atom Heart’ does initially sound like one of those sophisticated Eurovision entries before it quickly finds it feet with the flashing and rotating synth chords tied up by the bass line. Nick pulls off a difficult rise in the vocals which ushers the whole song into another tempo and is similar to ‘Sleep Patterns’ in how it can have that dual purpose of being quick fixing and rhythmic while also having much more to it. Whirring and undulating synths slowly develop into urgent and snappy rhythms for the opening of ‘Dunes’ and go on to alter and develop in an early Daft Funk fashion. However the percussion and sharp riffs combined with it, give the song a completely different feel along with the natural and powerful vocal. ‘Electric Chair’ is the final track off the EP with yet another variety of synth style. This time in a more dance like mode. They then expand and shoot across the songs space that is balanced off by the rooted bass line and the high tempo engine of the percussion. It is like Hurts but with more ideas, feel and atmospheric quality and they have seriously raised the bar and nudged the boundaries of synth pop which can only be a good thing.

Image from scruffoftheneckrecords.com

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