Sultry and ultra laidback albums of original material nodding firmly towards the likes of Serge Gainsbourg and the more blissed out end of the European Sixties film market don’t come better than this in the first half of 2015. Whilst the chap behind Nouvelle Vague is still pottering about doing cover versions in I Declare Nothing two artists with real talent have created the best kind of homage imaginable.
The work’s timelessness is one of its major selling points. Authenticity without slavish posturing and originality minus over-inflated egos, successfully combine to fully realise the aims of the collaborative project. Hearing these ten tracks unaware of what you were being played you’d be hard pressed to say what era actually spawned it.
Tess Parks’ stunning vocals weave a spell from beginning to end on the album, alternately beguiling and matter of factly freeing the listener as Anton Newcombe wraps the whole thing up in layers of lush psychedelic lounge and late-night clubland melancholia.
Self-produced & self-released by Newcombe on his A Recordings label, the benefits of having full artistic control over proceedings whilst work was progressing at his studio in Berlin over the past year or so are readily visible in the looseness achieved and the way the album flows together. Not a single track feels like it would have been better placed elsewhere in the running order.
The music buying public don't need constant re-hashes of the music of times and eras long since past but stylistically those sounds are as relevant as they've ever been, when expertly performed in up to the minute compositions as Parks & Newcombe have created here. Take the time to lose yourself in I Declare Nothing and see where it leads you.