Nudge is one of those groups who have always seemed to have a revolving-door policy in regards to who performed and played on their released. On their debut Trick Doubt, a wide range of people showed up with instruments in hand before the whole thing was run through the processing gamut, and on their previous Elaborate Devices For Filtering Crisis, 9 different musicians played a total of 20 instruments before sonic edits and touches were again added in the studio.
On Cached, the group has taken a slightly different strategy in that they've whittled their number of members down to a trio, yet the overall musical outcome hasn't really changed a whole lot. This time, the group consists of Brian Foote (who released the first album from the group on his own Outward Music label, and has been a backbone of each release from the group), Honey Owens (a member of the excellent group Jackie-O Motherfucker), and Paul Dickow (aka minimal-electronic musician Strategy).
Like other releases from the group, the release treads ground between the organic and electronic, and as usual the group mix in a batch of almost improvisational tracks alongside some more song-oriented ones. The album opens with a more straightforward track in "Classic Mode," but the track will never get mistaken as something aiming for top rotation as its wobbly beat constantly sounds like it's going to slide out from under the track while minimal atmospheric touches blend warmly with the vocals of Honey Owens. "Contact" takes the dub influences (surely a bit of Dickow's doing) and cranks them up a notch as delayed guitar twangs glint over throbbing rhythms as rapid bursts of electronics spray for dynamics.
Even moreso than in the past, the group seems to take wild stylistic swings on the release, and sometimes they pay off while at some points they don't. The awesome "My New Youth" finds the group rocking out more than they ever have before, rumbling along with a sort of minimal post-punk track that sparkles with electronic production and dance-punk beats. On the other hand, "Dee Deet" is a rather aimless six minutes of wanky electronics and lumbering beats that lurches and lurches but doesn't really go much of anywhere. While the release isn't quite as consistent as their previous effort, the group really seems to benefit from having Dickow on board, and he seems to benefit from having the added instrumental variety to pair with his beat and rhythm programming. Nudge is a group that's really hard to compare to anyone else making music, yet their glitch/dub/ambient/jazz thing is highly infectious.