Noveller is the music project of Sarah Lipstate. She uses an electric guitar and a whole bunch of effect pedals to make her experimental sound. Arrow is her latest album. It comes at a busy time for her as she has been touring as part of Iggy Pop’s band as well as earning writing credits on some of his songs. In the past she has played with Glen Branca, JG Thirlwell and Lee Ranaldo and supported St. Vincent, U.S. Girls and Helium - acts she can also refer to as her adoring fans.
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My favourite bits of Noveller’s ‘Arrow’ are when the musician known to her pals as Sarah Lipstate veers off down the same path of peyote-hazed ambiences walked by the much-underrated Cankun. Granted, there’s none of Cankun’s hypnagogic looping to ‘Arrow’, but tunes like ‘Effektology’ and ‘Zeaxanthin’ share some of the French artist’s psychedelic modes and half-cut atmospherics. I’d also head back to the parts of the record where a distinct sense of jeopardy upsets the otherwise clement drift - ‘Thorns’, for instance, is full of eerie harmonies that give off a sort of spooky noir-type effect.
Otherwise ‘Arrow’ is surely an impressive record, but apart from a general sense of pleasant awe I wouldn’t say I was particularly moved by it. It’s a classic background listen - not that you wouldn’t get anything from it by locking in directly seeing as how there’s plenty of space for contemplation here, but it works best as a soundtrack to daydreaming. Or, indeed, just as a soundtrack - you imagine some of this music will be used in a TV show or film before too long, particularly given its sonic proximity to the scoring work of Nick Cave & Warren Ellis.
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- Arrow by Noveller
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