Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Mike Gentry
We wonder what kind of world Holden Lewis and Jeremy Mendicino of the Boston, MA band Pretty & Nice see out there, beyond their windows. It's one that seems to involve the normal array of scurrying squirrels and we're pretty sure there's a regular trash collection service operated by a city agency. There are probably good teachers, but the schools have gone to hell. What gets a little screwy are the people roaming around. You get the feeling that they're observers of a world that's reduced to something a little cockeyed. The first person that you pass on the street might seem normal enough - put together, showered and with conditioner in their hair - but the second and the third look like they're out of it. They're drooling, they're listless, their eyes are glassy, they're mumbling, they're agitated, they maintain an uncomfortable amount of eye contact.
It's all very unnerving and you wonder what's gotten into them. You find, in the Pretty & Nice, world that we might be looking at more of a post-apocalyptic zombie world than we thought we would be. It's filled with jumpy people. It's filled with cackles and weird, split emotions. It's filled with some sweetness and plenty of heartbreak and carnage as well. Sure, that sounds like the world we're all getting batted about in, every day, but it's taken to a different level.
They sing, "All of the people, the people you/They are all buried now, buried in snow/Shovel with patience, go with the flow/Shovel with patience wherever you go," and we instantaneously start to be very, very conscious of what we're stubbing our toes on, what we're tripping over. They're former loved ones and we feel bad immediately.
There are hints that some of the people in these songs - which feel hopped up and tapped into messier variants of the island sensibilities of the Friendly Fires - are being manipulated, that they can be plugged in, unplugged, that they're something other than they seem from the outside. They have their secrets and they can be rough with them, merciless. They hear voices - the laugh of the hyenas coming from up above - and they take the drugs that come in the capsules that people are so happy and eager to make for them. They look to them for their health, to fix their broken bodies and calm their nerves down. It could be just the thing to work.
Pretty & Nice Official Site
Hardly Art Records