Last year, Demon Hunter’s Randy Clark and Project 86’s Randy Torres crowdfunded the release of an electronic side project called NYVES. Their debut album Anxiety was released this last month on Spartan Records. Had I expected this album to moody? Yes. Had I expected it to be dark? Yes. Had I expected it to be earnest? Not necessarily.
The album opens with “Return,” a notably cinematic track that broods its way up through hope and struggle, telling us that “every trial is a chance to change.” The album moves to “Something Divine,” in which we find the prayer-like cry: “I wanna feel there is something real down inside.” Mid-album we find an exquisite cover of the Psychedelic Furs’ “Love My Way.” NYVES takes this tune and transforms it to their dark electronic sound, while still paying tribute to the original structure of the song. The rest of the tracks vaguely speak to darker times where pessimism reigns. However, the album closes hopefully with “Light.” This closer addresses the darkness in the previous tracks, attributes it to us humans; but then it professes belief that everything will be made right in the end.
Musically, NYVES walks similar ground to Depeche Mode and Nine Inch Nails. It pulses and growls its way like a heartbeat through the eleven tracks, rising and falling as if it has breath of its own. It didn’t take very long for Anxiety to reach its crowdfunding goal because it is prominent that Ryan and Randy know what they’re doing from both a production and business standpoint – a bit of a rarity in the music world. Even though it’s dissimilar to their former projects, the album feels very natural and coherent. There aren’t any disturbances to the flow, which makes for a pleasant – even relaxing – experience. Altogether, Anxiety paints a dark canvas both musically and lyrically. But this darkness allows the hope that bookends the album to shine even brighter through the represented murkiness of life.
Get connected with NYVES at the following links. You can get physical merchandise, including some sick vinyl at their label’s site.