[sic] Magazine

Nutopians – Rewind

A breath of fresh air.

Nutopians first burst onto [sic]s scene in 2016 with their long player, What Does The Future Sound Like. We loved the Sunderland duo’s unabashed 80’s leanings. Taking cues from new wave, post-punk and even a dash of Northern Soul, Nutopians set out to re-write the future, using the very best that the past has to offer. The same ‘past/future’ dynamic exists throughout the latest album Rewind. Those of us of the Cassette Tape vintage will appreciate the cleverness that has gone into the song titles and sequencing here. If you’re younger you’ll still pick up on the recurrent themes of rushing toward something (better?) whilst simultaneously wishing that we could go back and revisit some moment from our past.

Musically Rewind is a continuation of the good work that littered What Does The Future Sound Like but structurally Rewind is the stronger album. After the title track launches proceedings we’re treated to a succession of indie anthems punctuated only by one ambient instrumental piece which signifies the ‘pause’ in this particular cassette journey. Rewind feels like a Greatest Hits collection from a band you might have missed first time around. Crucially these anthems aren’t samey in the slightest. There’s plenty of variety on show across this hit parade. ‘Fast Forward’ and ‘Claustrophobia’ have actually already been singles (or EP title tracks if we’re being picky) and rightfully so. On the latter you can detect the mildest of Goth leanings that brings bands like The Chameleons into the picture if we’re looking for influences. ‘Fast Forward’ typifies Nutopians skill for a damn good chorus. I challenge anyone to listen twice and not find themselves singing along, subconsciously trying to mimic Ian Jackson’s heartfelt whoop.

The post-punk revival is nothing new of course; What Nutopians bring to the party, their USP if you like, is their precise, clean optimism. Their music and words are as sharply pressed as their clothes. If Secret Affair had decided to stop being a Mod band and rebranded as The Sound, they’d have been Nutopians. I love how they avoid the angst and gloom that typifies the genre. Rewind will appeal to bedroom boys (of all ages) but it’ll also inspire us to get out more. Nutopians music is hopeful.

Fast Forward, Pause…

… Rewind

As a metaphor for life Rewind doesn’t work but for hopes and dreams it pretty much nails it.

For fans of The Cinematics, The Domino State, early Tears For Fears and the aforementioned acts.

What Does The Future Sound Like


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