Release Date: Mar 17, 2015
Record label: Captured Tracks
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Indie Pop
With his band Catwalk, 19-year-old Nic Hessler was one of indie pop's likely lads in 2010, having released a handful of beloved singles for YAY! and Captured Tracks and getting ready for a big tour. Five years later, having lived through an illness that left him partially paralyzed and unable to play music, he's made it back to the national stage with a solo record that fulfills all the promise that many feared would never be. It's not exactly the return of Catwalk, more like how Catwalk might have sounded after a few years of refining and perfecting their sound.
Although still at the sprightly young age of twenty-three, Nic Hessler has gathered enough experience some would say to last him a lifetime. Having signed to revered US indie Captured Tracks in 2009, off the back of two singles, the bright-eyed Californian went under the guise Catwalk, everything seemingly falling into place for him and his hazy, curious lo-fi pop output. Yet whilst writing for his first record, the song-writer was diagnosed with Guillain-Barré Syndrome, leaving him unable to continue work on his record until now.
Soft Connections is Nic Hessler's first solo release after a lengthy battle with the rare autoimmune disorder Guillain–Barré Syndrome. Hessler fell ill in 2011, after releasing a couple of well-received singles as Catwalk, and just before launching his first tour. Now reportedly in good health, Soft Connections finds Hessler dropping the band name and resuming his career as a proper solo artist.Album opener and highlight "I Feel Again" has a nice, hazy pop feel, and could be taken as a straightforward love song, or a comment on his rebound from near-paralysis; either way, it's a good song.
Signed as a teenager as Catwalk, Nic Hessler’s precocious beginning as a west coast indie guitar pop-smith was cut short when, aged 18, he was diagnosed with a rare auto-immune disorder. That’s not why you should enjoy this debut solo album though. Hessler has no need for sympathy: he’s already walking on sunshine, tilting at jangly power pop, the Lemonheads, Love and countless knock-kneed indie bands.