There’s only so long I can go between New Wolves releases before I start to feel restless. Today I’m happily immersing myself in their latest single A Modern Debt. You’ll experience the softer, more vulnerable contours of the Welsch trio. And with a cherry on top–featuring the lush and lovely vocal work of UK’s singer-songwriter Flo ( Floriane Hu). I could write an entire article on her musicianship alone. Here in A Modern Debt, Flo is swept up in New Wolves‘ style, together producing an experience truly worth savoring. I’m delightfully absorbed and will be for a while.
Like most of New Wolves‘ work–and what I’ve come to feel is part of their signature– the track reaches toward me with a deep, warm, mesmerizing bassline.
Yet there’s a particularly compelling warmth here, an intimacy that draws me in with its gentle and muted ambiance. The song describes two lovers separated by the rising seas. Layers upon layers of vocal harmonies leave my skin tingling. It’s gentle, but I can’t call it mellow. The tempo pulses clear and steady, at the perfect pace of a mid-afternoon walk. Or perhaps, as the imagery of the lyrics suggests, the rolling in and rising of a cold, salty tide. Slow and steady, simultaneously gentle and powerful. The percussion work is intuitively and expertly executed, giving the song movement while not overwhelming the gentler tones of the ambiance with any stark touches.
And true to their style, it’s all wonderfully saturated in guitars and synths. Mixed by Mercury music prize nominated Shuta Shinoda, the variety of components are brilliantly blended into a lovely, subdued kind of vibrancy.
I continually admire the artful and intuitive way in which New Wolves can articulate mood. A Modern Debt seems to imprint me with a kind of soothing ache.
This is longing, made into music.
The band is gaining momentum with attention from BBC Introducing. A Modern Debt was the Pick of the Week from BBC Radio 6 Tom Robinson on freshonthenet.co.uk.