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EP Review: Nightmare and the Cat – ‘Simple’

3 min read

L.A 5-piece rock-pop outfit Nightmare and the Cat are no strangers to success. While the bands popularity is quickly gaining momentum, brothers Sam and Django Stewart have also been privileged to front row seats of their old man’s career who is none other than legendary Eurythmic, Dave Stewart. Growing up in a highly successful musical family has obviously taught the musicians and songwriters a thing or two as we hear through the units brand new EP, Simple, a brief yet bustling mainstream intro to this new collective.

NightmareAndTheCatSimpleThe band set out to include as many genres as they can cram into 5 minutes on EP highlight Alvarado. The track opens up as a southern scented folk number; the entire bands coming together as they croon a series of “ooohs” behind front man Django before the track lifts off into an energetic, indie-pop fueled anthem within its catchy chorus. Django’s  vocals sit on the track with confident control and sounding quite reminiscent of Rufus Wainwright, particularly in his lower range. The song soon evolves and ropes in some edgier rock elements as the track nears its end and provides the EP with a truly diverse gold nugget. What’s more is the fact that the band really sound like they are having fun putting this track down, something that make Alvarado even more fun and appealing to listen to.

Blackbird Smile is a mid-tempo, pop drenched inclusion, propelled by a thumping drum beat and multiple effects that keep the engine well-oiled and inviting on this track with its infectious, hook heavy melody.

The guitar work on Be Your Own God fixes the spotlight firmly on the bands instrument wielding talents while the title track delivers an injection of sentiment as it unfolds as, for the most part, a beautifully harmonized slow-jam. With periodic bursts of energy and a beautiful collision of instruments and effects, the track sounds quite similar to rock super-group Muse.

The band certainly has tapped into something unique here on this EP. Each of the 5 members making up Nightmare and the Cat have honed in on what makes them an asset to the collective and each delivers masterful individual performances to tie the Simple package together tightly. The production is also really quite impressive for an EP that serves as a commercial introduction to this new act and they have clearly enlisted the right people to help them put this collection together.

Despite the title, the EP is anything but simple. Its seemingly effortlessly merges multiple genres and musical eras into 5 tracks of impeccably well-produced and well written gems of musical deliciousness that I for one plan on making Simple a staple to my 2013 playlist.