Triphop could be compared to making passionate love after a bottle of good Chilean wine. The Nick Luca Trio’s style of triphop, then, is too drunk to fuck. Little Town, the band’s first offering, mushes the barely there percussion and smokiness common in triphop with smooth jazz piano lines and soft rock chord progressions in a most decidedly muddled way, leaving the listener wistfully wondering what could have been.
“Psychadelic Haze” is the unfortunately titled low point of the album, a piano laden track overlaid with vocals put through an echo-y effect that actually made me feel embarrassed for the band. The lyrics culminate in a chorus of “I live my life in a psychadelic haze/all my memories have been erased” as the effects grow increasingly trippy and played out.
The album has strong points, however. “Hatch,” in particular, aceives everything that “Psychadelic Haze” does not. The minor downbeat tied to lyrics that grab a listener’s attention (Are we just ghosts here waiting to hatch?) and dark effects work on levels that most of the album doesn’t. The overlapping of jazz and triphop come together to form a whole on this track in a way that the rest of the album can’t quite make happen.
If you’re a triphop enthusiast looking for an album with a really new sound, this is for you. For the rest of us, however, it’s a prime example of a band trying to do too much all at once and unfortunately failing to do much of anything.
Recommended if you like: Portishead, but think it’s a little too drum and bass