Nehann TEC / Ending Song 7″
Japan’s NEHANN delivers a 7” of carefully constructed, goth-leaning post-punk. The first song starts with a bouncing bass line and clean guitar riff out of the JOY DIVISION handbook, followed by a slightly distorted guitar line that interplays with the first. Then, a third guitar enters to join the fun. That is what initially struck me about this release: the amount of effort and technique put into these two tracks is admirable. They both build atmosphere and boast thoughtful production so they sound like they were recorded in a cave, but a nice one with lamps and like a chair to sit in and read postmodern poetry. I also appreciate vocalist Hirotaka’s willingness to really go there with his vocals. He reaches for the high notes in a hair/glam metal fashion that might be off-putting in a record less earnest than this one. Likewise, there is a finger-tapping guitar solo near the end that works well, despite finger-tapping and solos being kind of ridiculous in general. NEHANN pulls it off though, and the song is a jam. “Ending Song” is a dreamy slow dance track with a flanged guitar opening over keyboards that sounds like FAILURE. A repeating catchy guitar riff carries through the entire song, and Hirotaka does his best BOWIE impression (it’s really pretty good, though). It’s a crush-worthy mixtape track for sure.