Y NIWL: ‘Y Niwl.’

 I just love these guys’ style! 

Not only are they a ‘surf’ band from the rather cold and misty North Wales coast, but as they themselves say, they are “probably the first Welsh language instrumental surf band.” 

Not that any language features predominately (or at all, really) on an instrumental album, but what Y NIWL (translation: ‘The Fog’) have done here is to name all ten tracks in Welsh. Welsh numbers, that is…. although apparently the titles do not necessarily correspond to the song’s placing on the album. (Still with me?) 

Far from appearing ‘weird,’ ‘wacky,’ or ‘zany’ for the sake of it, this all actually seems quite natural for some reason. You don’t get the impression that Y NIWL have developed a ‘novelty’ to distract from their music. And as if to reinforce their intention of ‘keeping it real,’ the album was recorded ‘live’ with no overdubs – just stacks of reverb – and straight onto tape using decades-old techniques and equipment! 

Musically, this is a fabulously refreshing listen. The four guys of Y NIWL (pronounced ‘Uh Nule’) may have taken inspiration from the usual suspects like Dick Dale, the Champs, The Shadows and The Surfaris, but there is a modern feel to its presentation.

And before you go thinking hat all ‘surf’ music sounds the same, then just lay aside twenty-eight minutes of your time to give this album a hearing. There is enough variation by way of pace, and darker intonations to maintain the interest of even the more ADHD orientated listener. 

Of course, in the main it is all driven along by the ‘twanged’ guitar, snare and crashing cymbals, but effective and sparing use is made of the organ. It really does have a lovely balance to it all. 

It’s kinda hard to try and describe the individual tracks without using the reference points made earlier, which I think would be really unfair on a band who have had the balls to go against the grain of what is perceived to be ‘current’ out there.

Best I can say, if you’re a regular reader of this site, or even have a feel for the type of music that’s essentially ‘my bag, man’ is that this is very possibly one of the best albums I’ve had to review this year – certainly within the top ten! 

Go check these guys out, daddy-oh! 

(Released through Aderyn Papur on 6th December 2010) 



About Cee Tee Jackson

I run three blogs: 1) ceeteejackson.com (my author blog.) 2) leadingpetcare.com (my business / dog walking blog) 3) loudhorizon.wordpress.com (my music blog .. infrequent posts) Guess what? I'm a dog walking, wannabee author that loves music.
This entry was posted in POP / OTHER Albums and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s