Review: TESSEL – ‘Cinema’ (single)

by | Mar 25, 2021 | Reviews, Singles

TESSEL – Cinema, feat. Amber Arcades (SoundCloud)

Netherland band TESSEL released Cinema, a fun bedroom pop single. The song has an addictive jangle pop sound, their second single from their upcoming EP, and follows their hook filled indie surf pop Family Time.

TESSEL is a four piece with Thijs van Zutphen on bass, Levi Manner on guitar and vocals, Jens Wierckx on drums, and Joshua Bredow on guitar. They hail from Utrecht, Netherlands, and tracked this single at Simon Akkermans’ Epic Rainbow Unicorn Studio.

The band worked with Dutch producer Simon Akkermans, and his production is golden on this single. Annelotte de Graaf of Amber Arcades is featured on this TESSEL single, adding such a nice touch. (He produced Amber Arcades 2018 dream pop album, European Heartbreak.)

The EP was recorded during the Pandemic, and is self-described as, “a collection of personal stories” (Spotify). The EP will be released through [PIAS], Holland’s family of independent labels.

Looking closely at Cinema

Thijs van Zutphen’s bass lines are phenomenal, elevating the song to a much higher level than if he had played a straight up bass line. The drums are set in a room, placing them slightly behind the guitar and vocals. Where Levi’s vocals had a slap-back in Family Time, they’re clean in Cinema, while Annelotte’s vocals have the slap-back (they sit nicely behind Levi’s vocals because of this).

The guitars are so nice in this song. Clean electric guitars running through a warm tube amp carry the song, panned to the right. A carved out tremolo guitar comes in during the intro and bridge, with a sound that sticks in your head. A vibey synth comes in during the chorus, adding atmosphere and depth, and has a nice widened stereo image.

This is such a great song, showing that this band is intentional with their sounds, and can explore different tones while still sounding cohesive. We’re excited to hear the rest of this EP as these are standout singles.

TESSEL – Family Time (YouTube)

TESSEL links:

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