Nick Waterhouse – Time's All Gone
Although only 25, San Francisco’s Nick Waterhouse excavates the roots of American popular music with an unnervingly obsessive attention to detail. In contrast to Mark Ronson, whose production adds a contemporary sheen to the sounds of 50s and 60s Detroit and New Orleans, Waterhouse insists upon using only vintage amps and recording equipment. Time's All Gone, as a result, has an uncanny graininess, as though the funk-inflected guitars, saxophone and organ really were being transmitted from another era.
For Waterhouse, this disorientingly atemporal quality is to be welcomed: “a record is a moment in time,” he states, “and something recorded in 1955 is the same as something recorded in 2010”. Sonically, yes; but Time's All Gone cannot, as a result, be easily comprehended within its contemporary cultural context. Yet the catchiness of the riffs here, combined with Waterhouse’s instinctive ability to blur the boundaries between soul, R&B and funk, suggests that may be an advantage.