Summer in Seattle is a magical time of year. The marine layer that hovers over the city gives way to the sun and the foliage catches the sunlight at an angle that radiates green in a color so vivid, it seems like it can only be found there. Seattle is home to NAVVI, the duo consisting of Kristin Henry & Brad Boettger, whose sound feels like the dying light of a Seattle summer’s dusk, bottled to be enjoyed year round.
NAVVI’s debut album Omni was released last month by Seattle label Hush Hush Records and is the perfect soundtrack to summer evenings in the park. The first thing that stands out about Omni is how sharply focused the instruments sound but also how much depth and space there is in the recording, Henry’s vocals perfectly placed among Boettger’s chiming guitars and patient, evolving synthwork. The album’s fine guitar melodies and lithe drum work are on full display on the opening track “Simpatico”, a perfect bed for Henry’s deep, full vocal delivery.
Elsewhere on Omni, “What Reason Do We Need?” shows off Boettger’s knack for contemporary drum programming whose deep low end notes, skittering hats, and errant snares would sound at home on a rap record. “In Gold” links a distant surf guitar line to echoing woodblocks and a slowly emerging background of pulsating DX synthesizers.
The album feels effortless in its execution and, track for track, is far more consistent than albums by musical peers of NAVVI.