Meadowlark, Nocturnes

Kate McGill and Daniel Broadley, formally known as Meadowlark have released their latest E.P. Nocturnes. 

By Jane Howkins.

   Meadowlark are back, and this time it’s with new E.P. Nocturnes, which features three remixed songs and one cover. The remixed songs are Headlights, Satellite, and Eyes Wide, and all three sound absolutely stunning. In fact, they actually sound better than the original versions of the songs, which we thought would be hard to beat, considering their innate quality. However, Meadowlark have managed to pull it off, and in spectacular form.

   Lead vocalist Kate McGill has a certain twang to her voice that immediately reminded us of Emily Haines from Metric, Broken Social Scene, however it’s something that people might not pick up on unless they’re big fans of both groups, and both bands are rather different from each other – at least in musical terms. Instead of the guitar driven, electronica backed tracks that Metric usually go for, Meadowlark have relied mostly on atmospheric, piano-driven set pieces. It’s also worth pointing out that Meadowlark set out specifically to create stripped down versions of their singles, and that a string quartet were also used to full effect, with the result being simply magnificent. There’s also a cover of the Sugababes About You Now, which sounds so much better than the original tune, with a haunting and almost mournful hint to it.

The four songs on Nocturnes are relatively simple, and yet they work so well. There’s nothing bloated and embellished about them, and there’s a wonderful production quality that we don’t hear often enough that shines through, bringing McGill’s voice and the stark instrumentation together into one beautiful package. It’s actually rather haunting, and there’s an icy coolness to the E.P. that hints at a hidden darkness, which is something we would love to see erupt in full force next time around.