Stolen Peaches


Pennywine Records, 2016

REVIEW BY: Vish Iyer


Like many others, German artist Novaa calls Björk as one of her main influences. Although Novaa’s quirky, electronica-driven music might hint at this fact, she is an artist like no other. Her music is too complex to be meaningfully reduced to a single point of comparison.

Novaa’s self-described “organic electronic” sound on her debut solo album Stolen Peaches  is sparse and calming, almost with a bucolic feel. The vocals of this 19-year-old singer/songwriter/producer are very mature. Her soft, timid singing style is inviting and relaxing, adding to the album’s overall hushed and rustic vibe.

The music and vocals on this disc seem to create a kind of forest of serenity, if you will, welcoming you into its abode. But it should be trodden carefully, because there just might be a big bad wolf lurking somewhere within, for Novaa uses the sparseness of the album to create an atmosphere that is pretty dark. A great example of this is the album highlight “Sex,” which consists mostly of Novaa’s vocals and sporadic synthesizer notes. The stillness of the song, agitated by Novaa’s powerful singing and blobby synthesizer notes that come down like heavy bricks, create quite an edgy number, on which Novaa quite bluntly and nonchalantly sings about having…sex!my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

There are many facets to Stolen Peaches, as Novaa associates a character with every cut: “Money,” “Sex,” “Sleep”…The titles themselves speak for the moods of the songs. For instance, “Money” and “Sex” are the tracks with the most chutzpah, featuring quite the impetuous electronica sound, while “Hands” is more intimate and not as cold. “Sleep” sounds like an upbeat psychedelic dream, and Novaa does pretty cool things to her vocals, like making them “squeal” artificially, as if she sucked helium. This is a pretty common theme throughout the album, in which Novaa creates various effects with her voice, such as pulsating it to create “vocal” beats for example. Another album highlight, “Hermit” is beautifully introverted. The music is delicate and pastoral, fitting “organic electronic” theme of the album perfectly.

Stolen Peaches has an ambience that is dark, but it is by no means a gloomy album. In fact, it sounds self-assured, confident, and positive, just like the story behind it: while trying to complete the album initially (then titled Peaches), Novaa’s car was broken into, and her laptop, which contained all the material for this album, was stolen. As a consequence, Novaa unfortunately had to start all over again, and this release was born. Considering the album’s backstory, Novaa appears to be an artist with not only immense talent, but also with tons of maturity for her age. It wouldn’t be a surprise if this young artist might one day herself become an influencer in the indie music world, much like the woman she presently calls her inspiration.

Rating: A-

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2016 Vish Iyer and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Pennywine Records, and is used for informational purposes only.