It’s difficult to swallow the Welshness of Zervas & Pepper (Paul Zervas and Kathryn Pepper). From summery, electric echoes of early Steely Dan, to James Taylor-esque acoustic sensibilities, everything about Abstract Heart screams ‘California circa 197-something’.
Fuelled by several weeks in LA, and a short tour in India, it’s a warm shot of exquisitely harmonised, blissed-out folk rock. But before you mentally consign them to Radio 2, trust us when we say it is extremely lovely.
Miller captivatingly opens a sun-kissed world of ‘cerebral American songwriter’ influences – from notes of The Posies in Foolish Dreamer to the pensive, ‘Dan-esque We Are One.
True, there’s nothing remotely new here. The California dreamin’, fresh-out-of-Laurel Canyon spirit at play is very familiar, and repeated in various (only slightly ‘varied’) guises across the album. Sometimes, however, a cosy, nostalgic cuddle is what you need to feel the world is a safer place. And there shouldn’t be any shame in that./o:p