Updated: Aug 24, 2021
Illustration: Beyza Çelikmen
Still Woozy is a curator of sounds before anything else. Over the course of the previous years, Sven Gamsky managed to create a new indie-pop sound that was uniquely his. Each single that he put out so far established a colorful vision of Sven's perspective on music. His most popular release Goodie Bag introduced us to a world of swirling melodies, funky bass lines, laid-back vocals and electronica fueled beats. From then on, he continued to feed his project with other releases that mixed and bended different genres through different production techniques. His debut album "If This isn't Nice I Don't Know What is" encompasses everything that we love about Still Woozy's music yet it has a lot of surprises and interesting reference points.
One of the most important elements in Still Woozy's success trajectory was the fact that he was self-made. He did it all, like some sort of superhero. He had a knack for music whether it'd be with producing or recording. With this charm in mind, he could have easily stayed inside a repetitive-DIY-bedroom-pop sphere which would generate enough success for him already. The way he created new layers through exploration of new sounds hints to how serious he is about digging deeper and seeing what he can do better as an artist and not conform into specific genre boxes. He is comfortable with distancing himself with the Still Woozy sound while still keeping the defining elements of his music like electronic influences and textures intact.
The record starts off with Woof, a heavy rock influenced song that mimics the percussions of Reptilia by The Strokes. The starter track contrasts the rest of the album as the rock reference is a new territory for the Still Woozy sound. It's a soft track that eases the listeners into the more punchier songs to come. Rocky has a very similar charm to his previous releases. It shines with repetitive use of words, hazy bass lines and a soft-spoken kind of singing over R&B beats that we know he loves to use. The hypnotic grooviness of the song has amazing parallels with his old singles yet it sounds more refined and sturdy. Woopie opens with a confused and an overwhelmed state of mind; "Why would you want me? / Why would you care?" Knowing that Sven makes music to calm himself down, Woopie seems to be the best emotional release for dealing with his mind-boggling thoughts. There is a common thread that ties these songs together through their grooviness yet when we reach the seventh track Drake, there is a palpable change of pace and influence.
It sounds like a sand-drenched song that would be the best fit to start any morning with. Window is like an extension of the previous track with similar guitar numbers. The R&B influenced back vocals adds a poised effect to the song, making it a perfect easy-listening summer track. The record closes off with These Days, another righteous track that serves as a good concluder as it harmonizes the best parts of of the album with a two minute interlude-y final.
The album feels more mature in terms of experimenting compared to Still Woozy's old releases. Sven has finally refined his sound in a more niche way by feeding his music with new references and inspirations. We get to experience the other depths of Still Woozy. If This isn't Nice I Don't Know What is playfully drifts between the newly-found references and the classic Still Woozy sound. Rock, R&B and hip-hop all come into a creative pot, resulting with an eclectic album that flows perfectly in terms of sonic cohesiveness. Stylistically and thematically, Still Woozy is more interesting than ever and his debut album would be a solid proof of that.