When I first heard the Notwist ground breaking album “Neon Golden”, my thinking at the time was that the album was so great that Notwist could never duplicate that album again. 1 For a long time, I was right. It isn’t that their long awaited follow up “The Devil, You and Me” wasn’t bad (it’s quite good actually), or their side projects like “13 and God” or “Ms. John Soda” were something not worth my time (both excellent too), but for me anyway, it didn’t reach the heights that “Neon Golden” had. 2,3
So when I heard that the Notwist were bringing out a new 2014 album, titled “Close to the Glass”, I was eager to hear it but wasn’t overly excited or expecting what was about to come out of my speakers. “Close to the Glass” is hands down the Notwist best album to date and all bets are off as to what this band is capable of with future releases. Don’t get me started about how great these songs will be to hear live or how excited I am to get a vinyl copy of Close to the Glass on my turntable.
The album starts off with Signals, a pulsating 80’s video games jingle that slowly develops just before Markus Acher’s Gary Numan style dry vocals come in. Things really kick into high-gear with the third track “Kong,” a pop masterpiece which has the perfect balance of bizarre electronica noises keeping you interested with stunning pop hooks, allowing you to play it anywhere, anytime, without getting bored of it. “Run, Run, Run” is another standout track that could benefit from heavy repetition and is one of the Notwist best tracks of their entire catalog. The album really flows along really nicely too because the band throws in stunning songs like “Casino” ,“Steppin In” and “Lineri” that stir up those reminiscent or ethereal feelings so rare and difficult to pull off and songs that their fans have come to expect. In short, this could easily be on most critics album of the year for 2014!
“Kong” by Notwist
“Close to the Glass” by Notwist
1 When I saw them at Lee’s Palace in Toronto on this tour, they were on fire at the top of their game.
2 Especially Ms. John Soda – (a side project consisting of Notwist bassist Micha Acher and Couch keyboardist Stephanie Böhm) for Notwist fans like myself this is worth searching out.
3 I saw 13 and God at the Majestic Temple in Detroit on this tour they were good but not as good as they were on the Neon Golden Tour.