by Sacha Kingston-Wayne
A key lyric appears on the last song of Nectar’s very good new album Knocking At the Door: “sitting with a Coke can next to me and it’s hurting my teeth but at least it’s distracting”. While working within a familiar pop-punk framework, Nectar have made a memorable album about the importance of small pleasures. Their bare-bones approach (give or take the occasional synth) is what makes the smaller moments in their songs dig deeper. Nectar understands that those fleeting pleasures are what keep us going in a tough world.
The album art for Knocking At the Door depicts someone asleep in a messy yet aesthetically pleasing bedroom. It’s a strong fit for the familiar scenes depicted in Nectar’s lyrics. “Even though it’s January, we still have a tree” sings frontperson Kamila Glowacki on “January,” evoking the annual post-holiday slump. The clean production foregrounds Glowacki’s voice, keeping no barrier between the listener and their low-key sentiments.
Glowacki also plays in Kowabunga! Kid and has a knack for emotionally honest punk songwriting (if those last four words turn you off, maybe it’s time to let some earnestness into your life). Though Nectar benefits from Glowacki’s contributions, the strength of the entire band is essential. Jake Mott’s simple, driving beats help make these tracks as catchy as they are while refusing to overshadow the melodies composed by Glowacki and guitarist Aaron Shults. Nectar are likely to connect with fans of genuine, clear-eyed feeling.