The Breeders: ‘All Nerve’ – review by Zoe Biggs


Sometimes timing is everything. If I would have listened to “All Nerve”, the latest from The Breeders, at another time, in another frame of mind, perhaps I wouldn’t have understood it or really listened hard. As it was, I was pretty ignorant of The Breeders’ music, save for ‘Cannonball’ and knowing that The Kim Deal was part of this band. Foolish. But now actually taking the time to listen to this their fifth full length album, and the first in 25 years to feature the line-up found on their famed 1993 release ‘Last Splash’, has proved fruitful.

The opener ‘Nervous Mary’ starts softly, slowly, brooding, but only for the briefest time before the heaviness kicks, the gloom looms in, and takes over with its sinsiter intentions. “She runs for the exit but she never got away” is a line that drills through.

“Good morning!” bellows Kim Deal, kickstarting the catchy ‘Wait In The Car’, riff laden and spiky, and just when you’re up and raring to go you’re abruptly told to “wait in the car” because she has “got business.” That’s us told.

‘MetaGoth’ is a lurking, haunting track driven by Josephine Wiggs’ steady and striving basslines, which urge the song forward into dark territories.

On ‘Spacewoman’, we get to be blissed out for a few minutes. Its dreamy, almost hypnotic fuzzy vibes wrap all around you in some sort of sonic comfort that you didn’t know you needed. Jim MacPherson’s drums shimmer and crash is equal measure to round out the dynamics of the Deal sisters’ guitars.

The inclusion of a cover of ‘Archangel Thunderbird’, originally by German rockers Amon Düül II provides an interesting addition to the album, pushing forward with a new energy.

An exciting and compelling return for The Breeders, so let’s hope they don’t keep us waiting so long for the next instalment.

The Breeders All Nerve

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