New Music Release: The Stories We Tell Ourselves by Nothing More
by Polly Hember
‘Everybody has an element of duplicity and deception’, a cold, clinical voice states in Nothing More’s ‘Convict Divide’ echoing Alan Watt’s enigmatic musings on psychoanalyst Carl Jung. The explorative excursion into the human psyche is the overarching theme that floods Nothing More’s new album The Stories We Tell Ourselves (out September 15). Frontman Jonny Hawkins takes inspiration from everyone from Jung to C.S. Lewis to delve into the human condition, producing an abrasive, interrogatory and introspective masterpiece that fuses rock and pop together in a sonic explosion that continues to expand and rework the genre.
This is an interesting point of departure for Texan rockers Nothing More; their new album presents a mixture of electronic and organic sonic palettes. This is a definitive ‘prog rock’ record in so far that is genuinely progressive; it is artfully crafted, highly ambitious and succeeds in all it sets out to do. My initial engagement was with their single ‘Go To War’ which was used for the Planet of the Apes, and with ‘Let Them Burn’ which is enjoying prolific coverage. The initial raw, grungey and immersive elements of these hits are emotive and catchy. However, the entirety of their album is engaging on a completely different level, stretching to new, unexplored and novel terrains, they carve out new territory with explosive energy and incredible craftmanship. With fragments of spoken word interjected between songs that are tense with unrest and political commentary as well as personal turbulence, this is a conceptually interesting release that engages
the private and public. Hawkins explains: ‘The Stories We Tell Ourselves is an introspective journey from the first song to the last. Making this album helped me stay tethered to reality as I navigated through challenges in my personal life’.
Old Nothing More fans who want to hold onto the grit, the grunge and the unabashed rocky feel of the unapologetic songs, will rejoice – but also be surprised. Catchy songs like ‘Don’t Stop’ and ‘Funny Little Creatures’ delivers high-saturated sounds, gigantic bass riffs and powerful metal vocals. Thrown in are sentimental departures from their debut sound that gestures to pop-rock; ‘The Great Divorce’ and ‘Still in Love’ are fantastic gems, and then ‘Just Say When’: an acoustic surprise that refreshes and revives the listener that is also one of the highlights of the entire album.
Conveying depth, sorrow and brave redemption – this album feels this most powerfully in its title song. With eighteen tracks, this progressive album never doubts itself and impressively holds its momentum and cohesiveness whilst exploring an original, emotive and sonic landscape wholly. This is a furious album that offers visceral emotion, complex conceptual musings with psychoanalytic, personal and political influence in a huge step forward for Nothing More; a brilliant point of departure and an exciting point of comparison that proves that they have, contrary to their defiant name, a hell of a lot more to give.
They will be touring with their new album. Famous for brilliant, high-energy performances with elaborate onstage props – this tour sees The Scorpion Tail emerging. A 14 foot-tall instrument made from scrap metal, automotive and motorcycle parts, hand-crafted by bassist Daniel Oliver. Don’t miss them.
Denmark, Copenhagen, Pumphuset
Sweden, Stockhold, Debaser Strand
Norway, Oslo, John Dee
Germany, Berlin, Misik & Friden
Poland, Warsaw, Hydrozagadka Klub
Czech Republic, Prague, Futurum
Austria, Vienna, Chelsea
Italy, Milan, Legend Club
Switzerland, Zurich, Dynamo
Natherlands, Amsterdam, Melkweg
France, Paris, Les Etoiles
Uk, London, Dingwalls
UK, BIrmingham, o2 Institute
UK, Glasgow, The Cathouse
UK, Manchester, Sound Control
Belgium, Antwep, Kvaka
Germany, Cologne, Underground
Germany, Hamburg, Headcrash