Label: Transgressive Records
Released: 3rd February 2023
The arrival of ‘The WAEVE’ marks the start of a busy year for Graham Coxon, he of Blur and general ‘your dad’s favourite guitarist’ status, with the summer Wembley shows beckoning in the distance. But before all that nostalgia, there is serious business in the here and now with his collaboration with Rose Elinor Dougall in their dreamy yet haunting new project.
If we must surely be coming to an end to “lockdown project albums”, then this self-titled effort is a good way to exit from that particular era. Playing against type, Coxon is on saxophone duty as much as he is on guitar, the mood and sound bouncing between genre as Dougall’s vocals and piano grip their talons in tightly. As motorik Krautrock beats crash into classic English folks tropes, and noise rock interrupts jazzy interludes and orchestral swirls, it might drift into late-night jazz lounge territory at times but never finds itself too far away from somewhere interesting.
Constantly innovative and restless, The WAEVE makes for that perfect spirit of collaboration where each artist is pushing the other onwards rather than allowing either of them to settle into the same old tricks. It very much sounds like what it is – two of the country’s most consistently interesting indie artists having a good time and stretching their musical wings.