One Score and Four
The Good Players coalesce around the refined songcraft of one Stephen Nichols, equal parts weak-in-the-knees crooner and twisted studio-as-instrumentalist. Their most recent EP, One Score and Four, channels Jeff Lynne’s aesthetics of orchestral rock excess into the 21st century, absorbing the aleatory dissonance prevalent in contemporary electronic/art music while somehow leaving pretension to us music critics.
This is itself an impressive aural feat, but how he and his dirty dozen manifest this meticulous multi-dimensionality live has to be seen to be believed. The Good Players have the uncanny ability to put the kitchen sink center stage without ever breaking the pop magic spell. Nichols and company’s polished studies in polarity brandish more analog bloops and unexpected segues than you can shake a theremin at while masterfully evoking a full spectrum of human emotion, from regret to exuberance. Listen and learn.