The poised alleycat swagger that underpins the verses to ‘Picasso Dream’ is a deception. Snaking grooves and slurred vocals turn to sonorous open chords and wiry lead guitar lines in the drop of a hat.‘Picasso Dream’ is a song about internalising your darkness, having it burrow away inside you until you can no longer contain it. It’s in moments like these when the facade drops and has to be quickly picked back up again. Drum fills careen through the mix as the squawking guitar lines make for some blistering dynamics.
“It’s about changing your perspective to gain drive and hope rather than suffer in sorrow – when you feel like you are imprisoned in life or whatever situation then just changing that prison into a prism means seeing many different paths out of the problem.”
The title of Neverman’s four-track extended play proposes a solution to our mind-made problems. Though their inspiration comes from the music of youth, there is a darker shade to the songs presented, which each examine internal conflict from the mirrored halls of the suffering mind. It’s not all gloom, as Neverman’s music will attest. Sharp grooves mix with explosive affirmative choruses to make an EP that is relentless in its vigour. Neverman tap into the wellsprings of darkness for inspiration, their solution to that darkness is simple and poignant. Prisons are dead-ends; prisms offers us the refracted light of new and varied possibilities.
Portchester-based Neverman is a convergence of four minds whose constant in their lives is the music that they produce. Frontman Matt McGowan initially met lead guitarist Craig Arnold studying music at Fareham College. Matt then went on to Bristol Institute of Modern Music, later returning to have a solo acoustic stint with Flutter By.
A crushed larynx prevented him from singing for three years, but after his voice came back he had developed an arsenal of songs to bring to life. He trialled the new material acoustically while searching for band members. At a pub gig he met bassist Aaron Payne’s mum, who put the pair in touch. Matt reached out to Craig, leaning on their tried and tested musical chemistry, and Aaron recruited his friend Liam Nesbitt on drums. Together they have put out four singles, and have amassed a dedicated fanbase in Portsmouth.
They headlined Wedgewood rooms to a crowd of three hundred and fifty, with plenty of support from local press and some BBC Introducing coverage. Since then they have played at Victorious Festival and gone on to record their debut EP It’s Not A Prison, It’s A Prism at Monnow Valley. In the two years, they’ve spent together, Neverman has crafted a distinct sound that carries all the energy of their influences, and with their thought-provoking lyrics and unbridled chemistry, they’re quickly rising to be one of the most authentic and invigorating indie groups in the country.