If you’ve had your ears open in London’s sprawling music scene, then Nostalgic Brightlights needs no introduction. For those of you just tuning in, they’re the hometown alternative rock four-piece whose sounds can be heard resounding around town! Comprised of August Wickman (vocals, guitar, keyboard), Tyler Nichol (lead guitar), Sandra Vaughn (bass) and Chris DeMelo (drums), the group’s been working steady since their beginnings in late 2015.
Their efforts have garnished an EP (2016’s The Cold Hard Truth) and full-length album (2017’s Dream Killin’ Machine), a handful of video singles, as well as rockin’ the reputable stages of last year’s SesquiFest, Rib Fest, Rum Runners, FitzRay’s, Old East 765 and just about any other local venue you can think of. If you followed along and tuned to in CHRW last Saturday, you heard a fantastic live performance of their to-be-released EP, Time Capsule, with Chris DeMelo reprising his role behind the kit. They also followed up their live-to-air set with the release of their new video single from the EP that same afternoon. But we’ll get to in a moment…
Their sound can be described as what should be the standard for modern day alternative grunge rock, drawing inspiration from 90’s legends like No Doubt, Hole and Garbage while staying true to their own. August’s vocals transition from soft and heartfelt to declarative and passion-addled, pulling it altogether with her personal, yet relatable lyrics which are very characteristic to the band’s sound. Her guitaring meshes seamlessly with Tyler’s, creating a cohesive sound that’s very befitting and complimentary to the band’s overarching style. It’s an awesome combination that just gets your head moving in tandem with their music. The guitars trickle off of Sandra’s stream of silky bass lines and smashes off the rocks of Alex Murray’s (the drummer featured on the recording) work behind the drums to create that feel you’ve been waiting to hear since the 90’s itself!
Much like the London summer nights of late, this track is hot! All the more appropriate given the EP’s title, Time Capsule, since the song has the ability to get you going full 80’s mode. The keyboard synthesizers perfectly capture the essence of the era that brought us MTV with a blend of fresh, rocky riffs that Nostalgic Brightlights incorporates ever so expertly into their sound. Filmed in and around London, the video is a re-imagining of how Chris Stein and Deborah Harry came to be. The lyrics “making plans on the payphone” encapsulate the intimacy and magic of setting up a summer soiree with a that special someone, especially after pumping quarters in the slot and hoping you don’t get the answering machine or busy signal. Those familiar with that point in time know exactly where I’m coming from. Band members aside, Mr. Lamb’s nephew makes a brief cameo, which is a fun bonus for you NB fans in the know as well as a few subtle nods to a particular 80’s group (wink, wink).
Their musical presence is nostalgic and the lights are shining brighter with each move they make and it’s almost time to dig up a copy of Time Capsule, the highly anticipated soon-to-be-released sophomore EP. In the meantime, crack a soothing beverage, crank the system and relive that feeling from a time when life wasn’t so complicated with “Summer Nights”.
Always keeping busy and making great music, Nostalgic Brightlights are on the move with more new material for the fans to enjoy. Find out what they’re doing and where they’re playing by following them on social media! They’ll also be playing a set this Friday at Old East 765 Bar & Grill!
Facebook – www.facebook.com/NostalgicBrightlights/
Instagram – www.instagram.com/nostalgicbrightlights/ (@nostalgicbrightlights)
Website – www.nostalgicbrightlights.com