The cover to NO/NO's first EP, "Drag" was found in the public domain. Originally titled "New Romantic Photo Shoot" 1981.
The cover to NO/NO's first EP, "Drag" was found in the public domain. Originally titled "New Romantic Photo Shoot" 1981. (Photo: Unknown)

NO/NO is not The Delphines (but it used to be)

One of my favorite bands to come out of Milwaukee in the past couple of years was The Delphines, which handled dreamy, poppy shoegaze and fuzzed out rock and roll with a youthful, too-cool-to-care attitude, best experienced in a small, dark club.

The band's shows were frequent and album releases were fast and furious, but also quite abbreviated. An EP here, a cassette single there. Even a YouTube-only release (one of my favorites). In my 2013 interview the band admitted it wasn't terribly interested in full-length releases.

"When we started the band we didn't want to do albums," lead singer Harrison Colby had said.

Eventually the band produces a full-length album called "Hush," but shortly afterward the band quietly broke up.

Disappointment followed. How could we allow this to happen? This band felt like it was composed of sun-bleached driftwood, waiting for a match to drop and set fire to the music scene. It was a band that made Milwaukee's music scene vibrate.

So I was surprised this morning when my phone lit up with a message from The Delphines about a new release:

Three fourths of The Delphines (Harrison [Colby], Lucas [Riddle], and Jeremy [Ault]) have made a new band called NO/NO with singer Cat Ries and just released a new EP.  Drag is available for free on their bandcamp…

With curiosity I clicked through and hit play. NO/NO is not The Delphines 2.0. The new sound incorporates more synth and pushes the fuzz into more of a New Wave territory, but it still holds the same achingly disaffected vibe.

Within 30 seconds I dropped everything and got in touch with Colby.

Apparently the marriage of former singer Jami Eaton was the driving reason behind the divorce of The Delphines. "We found all this out mid-way through the recording process for Hush so it was kind of a rough album to finish, mainly because we knew we wouldn't be able to continue after it was done." Colby said. "She couldn't commit to the band nearly as much as before."

There was a brief m…

Read more...