If ex-Metronomy man Gabriel Stebbing’s self-identification is unsure, his work certainly isn’t. “In essence, I suppose I am Night Works, although we play as a band; it was kind of born out of the ashes of ‘Your Twenties’ and some of it was co-produced by Joe Mount.” The very nature of Night Works may be just a tad confusing, but the effortlessly cool sound of the music which appends the name plainly isn’t.
Recent release ‘The Eveningtime’ certainly gets the nod from Clash. The piece has a particularly jaunty and soulful feel to it that lifts its listener into a sprightly mood, or, according to Stebbing, a drinking mood; “It’s sort of meant to represent that point in the night when you’re having your first drink, and there are no real plans so the evening could go off in any direction. You know, that moment when your shoulders drop and you just think ‘Aaahhhh…’"
The overall Night Works sound concocts a mysterious blend of R&B and ambient electro-pop, backed celestially with woozy vocals and weeping guitar grooves, a mold not too distant from first musical love Metronomy.
Stebbing admits that his decision to leave the band wasn’t an easy one, but felt it was unavoidable if he wanted to give his solo mission the necessary attention it would require. “I wished there was two of me, so I could do both,” he exclaims, “but it’s worked out brilliantly for them because obviously now they’re hugely successful and they deserve to be.”
The gracious soloist is anything but resentful of his former counterparts, and in truth he needn’t be if his next offerings are anything as gratifying as what we’ve heard so far.
Words: Josh Taylor
WHAT: Morphing British Soul-pop
GET 3 SONGS: I Tried So Hard, The Eveningtime, Modern European
UNIQUE FACT: He has a thing for French stuff - namely cinema, wine and cheese.
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