The Nein refuses to be accessible

By By Jesse Peterson

By Jesse Peterson

Does anyone remember when your mother’s response was always a resounding no? How upsetting! Not only did she seem to get away with withholding, she was downright fascistic. Now, how much scarier would the situation have been if she had been a fat German? (No offense to those with moms who really are fat Germans.)

The Nein, although not German, is a band that is slowly embracing its moniker more and more and reveling in giving the listener less rather than more. “Nein” seems to have become a symbol of restraint and is known for its inability to indulge the listener–and for this band, this is a good thing.

Utilizing an assortment of sounds, white noise and tape loops, Luxury brings a new flavor to the new-wave indie dance crowd. These flurries and cadences of background noise, especially when showcased with strong picking and picaresque drums, make the album listenable, if not a little unnerving and kind of spooky. At times, the album becomes sonically inaccessible.

As for the dynamics, there’s enough movement in Luxury to keep one’s interests attached to the musicality of the songs, whereas the experimental side might be too far of a stretch for certain listeners. For me, I found that the creative intros and outros often were my favorite parts. However, vocally, I was not impressed. Not that there is anything wrong with the vocals–they added some necessary melody in parts–but I found that for me, Luxury would have been better as an entirely instrumental CD (except track 11).

The Nein certainly didn’t make things comfortable, but the lack of an upfront overindulgence makes what is available all the more special. Luxury isn’t a fantastic album, but like a mother, it seems to know what’s best?with the occasional mistake.