I suspect most people whose curiosity is piqued by the new band the WAEVE attribute that interest to the presence of Graham Coxon, famous for bringing all manner of wild invention to the band Blur. I’m also glad to hear what he’s up to, but its the other half of the duo who has a tight grip on my music fan heart. Rose Elinor Dougall was one-third of the Pipettes, the glorious retro-pop group that burst like a firework some fifteen years ago with their pitch-perfect debut album. Dougall shrewdly left the group before their ill-advised, widely ignored follow-up album and has been making solid solo music ever since.
Grandly, the first single from Coxon and Dougall’s collaboration as the WAEVE doesn’t particularly call to mind either of their past efforts. It’s a moody, spectral pop song akin to something Marianne Faithfull might have come up during her run of grim brilliance from the late nineteen-seventies through most of the nineteen-eighties. At least that’s what the cut sounds like initially, and then it shifts into a headlong charge of icy intensity as the pair sing “I’m tired of being in love/ I’m sick of being in pain/ Won’t you just kiss me/ Then kiss me a again” in artfully discordant harmony. It’s piquant and pulsing, delivering a noticeable tremor of thrill.
The self-titled debut album from the WAEVE is scheduled for release in February 2023.