Carl JenkisonAmongst the current batch of US bands, Null Device, comprising of Erics Oehler & Goedken are certainly one of a kind as their sound takes on board a wide range of styles & influences which are incorporating into an easily accessable pop sound.
Although usually labelled as synthpop this only begins to scratch the surface of what this duo are about & has led to them gaining a great deal of respect even from those who don't much like more commercial musics with the duo easily able to take their music away from the obviously synthetic realms with the inclusion of violin adding to the ominous mood of the opening “Destinies & Destinations” [sic], the wa-wa guitar that combines with old-skool rhythms to add a touch of funk to “Easier” & the authentic middle eastern effects Orkestra Evdeyim bring to “Travelogue” (& which are put to especially good use on the 'Versiyon Turk' mix) being three such examples of this 'anything goes' approach. These ethnic touches make further appearances during “The Hourglass” & “Sevgilim” where they mix with a slightly darker feel. As such, this band could have a very wide appeal, from those who appreciate the duo's versatility right through to the average 30-something listener looking for something a little different or thought-provoking & such people would, I'm sure, appreciate the lighter pop of “Walking In London” while the dancey rhythms of “Someone Else” (which also boasts an impressively dynamic opening) or the trance-like sequencing of “Prevailing Winds” where the gritty lead guitar adds to the show of strength both show the duo spreading their wings to encompass an even wider range of modern musics.
This all leads to the closing instrumental ballad “Speechless” which casts it's spell through a heartwarming combo of piano & violin that even the later rhythmic colouring does nothing to dilute. The haunting, almost mournful feel that has already taken hold is then embellished upon in a masterful manner to make for a most impressive & heart-engaging ending.
Not a band for those who prefer their music to be easily pigeonholed Null Device prove time & again that pop music can be progressive, too.