Presenting the return of “the beautiful losers”, Tender Is The Nightshift: Part 1 is the new 12” EP from MY FAVORITE. That nickname was placed upon the cult indie pop band in their heyday when they released two acclaim gathering albums between 1999 and 2003. Their demise in 2005 left a hole in the lining of their fan’s world but one they now refill whilst surely coaxing even richer and broader attention with the first of a three part series of releases which share a half decade of songs and ideas.
New York hailing MY FAVORITE return with founder, vocalist, and principal songwriter Michael Grace Jr. being joined by Kurt Brondo (synthesizers, piano, drum machines) and Gil Abad (Bass) plus guests in Jaime Allison Babic (lead and background vocals), Joseph Babic (Electric & acoustic guitars) and Stephanie Cupo (background vocals and saxophone) as well as others upon the new release. The band’s first extended play release in nearly 20 years, Tender Is The Nightshift: Part 1 brings a fusion of the past and the now, nostalgic and fresh sounds as relevant to the imagination as the merger of tragic totems like James Dean, Princess Diana and Major Tom with contemplations and explorations of love and loss which are made even more potent given the past two years and current horizons.
The record opens with Dean’s 7th Dream; an eight minute plus synth pop captivation which enthralled with a tapestry of past and present invention. There is something of a Spandau Ballet meets Paul Haig hue to the song but only a flavour aligning with its jangling originality and ethereal individuality. Euphoric melancholy blossoms across the track and indeed the release as a whole, calling out from within as the song evolves by the moment with funk and jazzy twists colluding with pop and indie inclined turns. The track, which also features the guitar of ‘Captain’ Kirk Douglas from The Roots and the sax prowess of Peter Hess, simply beguiled and has haunted our attention since its first seducing.
Princess Diana (Awaiting Ambulance) follows, a ballad casting implications set in a certain moment in history to “all the illusions that ultimately consume our hearts.” With gossamer keys and radiant harmonies, it is calls like a light around the emotive silhouettes which shape our lives; an echo of our intimate shadows which sublimely mesmerised before Blues For Planet X took flight to cosmic heights and opportunities only to find disappointment and failure. Again the intimacy of its shadows and melancholic beauty homes in on the personal, its kaleidoscopic reach rapturous in its tempting.
The release is completed by firstly Second Empire (Second Arrangement), another bewitching hug of heart felt melody and affectionate harmony courted by earnest shadows, and finally it’s just as hypnotic alter ego Dub Empire, itself an instrumental symphony of emotive and seductive suggestion and fascination.
Tender Is The Nightshift: Part 1 is a breath-taking return by MY FAVORITE, in so any ways a tonic for ears and the imagination.
Tender Is The Nightshift: Part 1 is out now digitally via the band’s Bandcamp page and on vinyl via HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME RECORDS in the US and WIAIWYA in UK/Europe.
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Pete RingMaster 06/10/2022
Copyright RingMaster Review
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