NVDES – Life With Lobsters EP

After a slew of singles over the last couple years, NVDES have finally released an EP via B3SCI Records. The group is a creative collective that is produced by Josh Ocean, who also performs with the band. At four tracks, “Life with Lobsters” is an extreme expression of experimental music.

Just when you think you’ve figured out NVDES, they shift styles and change their tune. Many have tried to fit them into a category: punk alternative rock, synth pop with 50’s surf infusion, and tropical house mixed with hype-rap, to name a few. “Life of Lobsters” manages to break all of these constraints and explore the depths of experimental sounds, while still managing to sound like a coherent EP (for the most part). All of the tracks are extremely hyped and overtly energetic, leaving the listener mildly out of breath by the end. But while it may be a fun and wild listen, “Life with Lobsters” is not without its misgivings.

NVDES‘ “Life With Lobsters EP” is extremely hyped and overtly energetic but severely lacks of meaning

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The first issue I take is with the originality. While it may sound like a new and exciting wave of music, listeners should remember their music history. Back in 2012, The Cataracs were playing with a similar sound palette in their full-fledged album “Gordo Taqueria”. “8AM” sounds like they took The Cataracs’ “Calling Me”, amped the BPM, and put the electric guitar synth on some serious steroids. While finding inspiration in others is encouraged, in some aspects, there are too many familiarities.

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Another source of disappointment is the complete lack of meaning in the lyrics. Most of the time the lyrics just act as another instrument. This is fine and well at specific points, but becomes rather frustrating for an entire release. There may be portions where NVDES are trying to express something of interest, but we’ll never know – most of the vocals are completely indecipherable.

On the surface, NVDES latest “Life With Lobsters EP” is experimental and fun. However, delving deeper into the music reveals derivative style choice and a lack of meaning that cannot be excused. My advice: listen once and forget.

Peter Vowell
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