Erland And The Carnival: Nightingale

Erland And The Carnival: Nightingale

B-

Erland And The Carnival

Album: Nightingale
Label: Yep Roc

On Nightingale, Erland And The Carnival succeed in integrating a variety of musical styles into a distinctly old-world vibe. But in the execution of an interesting concept, something falls a little short. Everything about Nightingale seems forced: the variety for variety’s sake (including stabs at folk, psychedelia, ambient, and garage-punk), the bizarre recording location (inside a ship moored on the Thames), and the blustery swagger. Erland’s take on prog-pop never feels as mischievous as The Dandy Warhols, or as blissfully carefree as Super Furry Animals. The group approaches its music with gusto, but only Erland And The Carnival could make trip-hop feel old-fashioned. Plenty of Nightingale is ear-grabbing—the gritty, raw guitar and throbbing synths of “Springtime”; the twitchy bleeps and bloops of “I Wish, I Wish”; and the creeping “East And West.” But the album’s calculated frenzy keeps Nightingale from being the rush Erland And The Carnival wanted it to be.