nzoa july 2019

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Reviewed by Joel Thomas

Sub Dude: Self-titled

Reviewed by Joel Thomas

Sub Dude: Self-titled

There’s a definite warmth to Christchurch band Sub Dude ’s debut album.

‘Sub Dude’ feels like it was recorded in a dingy basement with a thunder storm going on outside and friends hanging around as they crank a heater and sip away at coffee or beer. Maybe I just say that because it’s a winter release.

Sub Dude is fronted by Adam Hattaway, who released two prior EPs and has also been the guitarist for folk singer Bryony Matthews, was a part of the band Tracy Barlow, and fronts his own folk project, The Adam Hattaway Band.

The album is charming, a bit psychedelic rocky and a bit indie poppy. The mixture is a good one.

The songs start off contained, with groovy bass lines and steady drums lining traditional song structures. As the songs progress, the psychedelia takes over and the noise spill through the structural seams into a more psychedelic trip.

The mixing coincides with this. Starting off simple, panning escalates as things get more intense. Spoken work samples and other interesting chunks of audio are often mixed in to bring the songs to a peak.

The vocals are similar to Orange Juice and some tracks like BF4 Eva and Finger Daddy Bad News have the full ‘80s jangle pop vibe, but without losing the distorted psychedelia of the rest of the album. The Pixies also come to mind.

Slug Woman highlights what everything seems to be about – the light-hearted lyrics, the groove, the weird guitar effects and solos, as well as the escalating absurdity. ‘Sub Dude’ proves a solid debut from a band that really know what their vibe is.

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