The Omaha rocker and Artist To Watch David Nance is prolific, and he’s not wasting any time getting his newest project out. Nance recorded Wet Candles, his new surprise album out today, throughout March of this year. Now, on the first day of April, it’s available on Bandcamp to purchase and stream. Think of it as the musical equivalent of farm-to-table agricultural commerce, except online, or something. The music is better than the metaphor.
Wet Candles is kind of a covers album, though Nance isn’t going out of his way to point it out. None of the songs have recognizable titles, and even the music does not quite jibe with anything familiar, yet listen closely and the songs turn out to be reworkings of decades-old hits. “Hit Me From Behind” is James Taylor’s “Carolina In My Mind”; “Yesterday Don’t Matter” is the Rolling Stones’ “Ruby Tuesday”; “Matchbox” is a truly bizarre spin on Melanie’s “Alexander Beetle.”
Because you read the headline, you know this music is restless, roughshod, and rambunctious. It’s a little rootsy at times, too, but four adjectives in a row seemed like too much, especially with the alliteration to account for. As long as we’ve already blown past the point of good taste, though, I might as well add that these pseudo-covers are on balance groovier, nastier, and harder than the originals. There’s a pleasing looseness to it all — the sound of open-minded rockers jamming in a basement, reinterpreting the oldies in real time, not bothering to clean up the scruff.
This album is brand new, and yet it sounds like dust is flying off it. Stream it below and buy it and Bandcamp.