MusicRecord Reviews

White Violet: Hiding, Mingling

Although it’s White Violet’s debut, band principal Nate Nelson has racked up mileage as a tour player for the likes of Nik Freitas and Azure Ray’s Maria Taylor, as well as having a couple solo albums under his belt. Emerging from the new imprint of esteemed alt-twang label New West Records, Hiding, Mingling is specifically inspired by Nelson’s native Athens.

Though Nelson’s evolving backing band is currently rounded out by Brad Elliott (Friendly Foes), Vaughan Lamb (Gift Horse) and Josh McCauley (A. Armada), the pillowed drift here has a distinct singer-songwriter mien. Emotionally, the downcast bedroom sound is content to stay indoors, trying to steel itself by keeping in the warmth against a cold world outside. Led by the vulnerability in Nelson’s voice, this is pop music that’s full of earth and heavy in heart.

Highlights include the lovely, sparkling soft-focus breezes of “Lays Around Lazy” (featuring vocals by Taylor) and the crisp, melodic jog of “Everyday is Listening.” But the collection’s crown, the quietly cutting “4 AM,” is an exceptional case of inward splendor.