Nosebora – Sink Your Teeth In

 Nosebora – Sink Your Teeth In

Nosebora – Sink Your Teeth In – Album Review

That is indeed, a strange name to have gone with!  Would have been tough to pin down what I thought Nosebora would have sounded like on sight alone…this time around, I was better off to just push play.  What’s in a name anyway, am I right?  As long as the music sounds good, that’s always going to be what really matters to the people the most.  Nosebora is the solo project helmed by Aaron Robeson – and if you’re among the savvy readers out there, you’ll figure out how he came up with the name he’s using.

Anyhow…Nosebora it is!  Because why the heck not?  When you’ve got “What It Takes,” believe me, there really ain’t much else that matters.  As I listened to the opening track from Sink Your Teeth In, it was crystal clear to me that amongst this myriad of clever effects and differences being made through the quality of his production, the stunning structure and songwriting we hear…I mean…Aaron seems to have a remarkable grip on what makes music stand out for all the right reasons if you ask me.  There are elements that are obvious to us all, like the fact that this dude can SING, which is immediately apparent as “What It Takes” begins boldly and brilliantly with only his voice and a piano melody.  There are other things that take a minute or two longer to learn, like the hybrid nature of his whole vibe and the music he’s making, or the intense level of attention to detail he’s put into these songs from both sides of the studio boards.  He’s self-taught when it comes right down to it…it’s a fact that will blow your freakin’ mind when you hear how impressive “What It Takes” is coming out of your speakers.  Aaron’s a talented artist without question, and trust me when I tell ya…if you somehow weren’t convinced in the first two minutes of “What It Takes” (which you should be, for the record), then you absolutely will be as the clock ticks past that mark and “What It Takes” surges into supreme clarity & creativity combined.  Every time I spun my way through this opener, I couldn’t help but admire it for how unique it is from so much of what’s out there for sure, but to hear how much Aaron gets right in the execution is truly staggering.

He continually throws curveballs at you, which I really like for the record.  Whether they pass or fail in the court of public opinion, or even with me, I still respect Nosebora’s quest for doing things differently.  You can boil things down to a sound that’s self-described as Pop-Punk/Emo-Rock – I can get behind that, but allow me to highlight that a label like that is actually incorporating four dimensions of sound as opposed to what appears like two…and I think that’s a bit of a better way to point out how much of a hybrid project Nosebora actually is.  Like, if you told me a song that sounded like his title-track does would come right after what I just heard on “What It Takes” right beforehand, I’d tell ya that’s unlikely – yet here we are and that’s the case.  Some things remain constant – his vocals for instance, are impeccable…Aaron’s a fantastic singer and knows how to get the right combination of attitude, sincerity, and endearing melody infused into one song.  Dude’s insightful, and an artist – that’s fully undeniable.  Do I love the lyricism of “Sink Your Teeth In…?”  Not so much if I’m being truthful with ya.  Some of it’s great – and those are the spots where you’ll find Aaron saying what he really wants to say, instead of the moments where you feel him adhering to a more phonetically-based concept.  Does that stop me from liking what I hear on “Sink Your Teeth In…?  Not at all really!  I don’t have to love every word in a song to enjoy it…and ultimately, I get what he’s going for in the way this title-track is written and I’d also be the first to acknowledge that it’s an approach that could just as easily make it a candidate to be a single based on the accessibility it contains.  What I like more than anything else about this second cut is that it makes it clear that Aaron knows how to get what he wants outta his music as Nosebora for sure.

You can hear how widespread the palette of the music of Nosebora is.  One minute, you might find Aaron’s music reminding you of an artist like Lukas Graham or bands like Snow Patrol or Semisonic, then in the next he might open up the Emo floodgates and he’ll sound more like something you’d find in All American Rejects…and honestly, his music seems to work in whatever direction he seems to want to take it, which is all of them.  “Can’t Trust You” is a great example of the hybrid sound he’s refined into his own…it’s cuts like this that prove he’s got a little something to get everyone’s attention, and probably more than a little in most cases.  I’m more partial to the title-track personally, and I’d still tell ya that the first impression & track we hear on this record is the best we’ve heard so far – but…this third tune confirms the dedication to the craft & the passion you hear is found inside of every song he writes.  All-in-all, you can never ask for more than that.  Aaron plays his music with purpose and conviction, and never goes into anything you’ll hear half-assed…and my ears appreciate that.  Yours will too, I promise.  We’re all going to like what we like or love what we love as listeners – and as an artist, all you can ever do is give everything you’ve got to every moment…if you’re doing that, you put yourself in the position where ANY tune could become someone’s favorite, and I’d argue that that’s what Aaron has done here.

“Use Your Better Judgement.”  Like…starting now?  I’m forty-three years-old at this point bruh.  And suppose I did…wouldn’t that send me running and screaming in the opposite direction of the music business?  I kid, I kid.  Nosebora probably isn’t giving me life advice so much as writing a few words to remember and live by that apply to him personally, and loosely to the rest of us as well.  Dude’s got a real great way of building his material, breaking it down, restarting it up again, finding that patch of melody to keep repeating for a moment or two…the structural stuff y’all – Aaron knows his way around the art of dynamics, and you can hear that in each of his songs, “Use Your Better Judgement” included.  I dig tracks like this that have multiple layers to’em, literally and metaphorically, and you can spend hours replaying them over & over and continually find something new to like about’em.  I’m always impressed by the way this guy sings – not only for how he sounds so spot-on, but also for how he seems to weave seamlessly between the styles of his hybrid vibe without a single hiccup.  As in, whether it’s the delicate side of his sound or the more intense & demanding notes he has to sing, he’s ready when the moment calls, every time.  “Use Your Better Judgement” is quite likely my next favorite cut in the record’s first half, following “What It Takes” – and I felt like I had days where I probably liked this fourth song even more as I spun Sink Your Teeth In over this past week or so.  We’re spoiled for choice though really; Nosebora hasn’t let any of us down even in the slightest when it comes to the effort that’s being put in.

Across the board, the music keeps proving that Aaron isn’t skimping out on the details or anywhere in the musicianship either – tracks like “Letters Are A Thing Of The Past” are dramatic, intense, and involved when it comes right down to it.  “I wish I could sing in another voice” he says – and I’m like, fuck – really?  I wish I could sing in HIS voice y’all…and many of us listening would feel the exact same way.  But yes…for the record, I get the point he’s making in this song, which largely revolves around what is and what isn’t effective when it comes to communication.  Lyrically, it’s one of my favorite tracks on the record, and I felt like there was a whole lot of meat on the bone here overall.  Like…chances are, “Letters Are A Thing Of The Past” might not be the first track that jumps out of the lineup to the majority of listeners out there, but I do think it’ll be one of the cuts that keeps’em coming back, you feel me?  Not every track on a record is cut out to be ‘the single’ of course…that’s completely expected and totally fine – but the more you can keep the consistency & quality of the material as balanced as possible overall, the better off you become when it comes to people touring the album all the way through – make sense?  Nosebora has put a lot of work into this record, and I feel like it’s something we can all hear.  “Letters Are A Thing Of The Past” is insightful entertainment that’s as complex as it is creative really.

I also really like it when we can feel the weight in a song right away…like, you can immediately tell that a track like “Clean White Dress” ain’t gonna be one of the happiest songs you’re gonna hear this year from the potently evocative melody in the piano & the way Aaron sings this track.  I’m not saying that’s any kind of requirement when it comes to the art of songwriting & such – but I am probably saying that I’d have no problem at all putting “Clean White Dress” right up there with the very best to be found on this record.  Do I expect that’ll be a universal opinion shared amongst at all?  As much as I can ever think we’d all agree on something…so no, not really – but it stands a better chance than most in terms of securing our agreement.  “Clean White Dress” is one of those cuts that’s every bit as devastating as it is beautiful…and it’s that exact kind of contrast that can often lead to real breakthroughs in art and music.  I think that Aaron has nailed the vocal melody of this track even more-so than he has the rest, and when it comes to his singing, it’s easily one of his strongest performances, even on a record that’s filled with them.  This is the kind of track you really don’t wanna miss out on…and though it’s a slower cut within this lineup, I think it’d still be well worth taking a close look at as a single to be the gateway into listening to Sink Your Teeth In.  Outstanding songwriting that’s only rivalled by an equally excellent performance.  All-in-all, there’s a large part of me that thinks this is actually right up there with the best of this year.

Good lord…then you listen to “Inhale” and realize that Nosebora possesses the power to shatter you straight from the inside out without having to use a single word.  I’ll fully admit to being THAT dude that sits and listens to music with no other distractions goin’ on…that’s why it takes me so damn long to finish the things I write, but it’s also why I’ve been able to connect with the songs from the independent scene on a completely different level than most ever will – because I genuinely listened.  I hear a song like “Inhale,” which is played entirely on piano and contains an incredibly evocative vibe…and I’m practically reduced to rubble.  Happily so too I might add.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m just about a mound of tears and nothing more every time I listen to this tune…but it’s songs like this one that make it easy to recognize how strong the connection an artist like Nosebora has to what makes music connect to US.  I’ll tell ya this much…you don’t write a track like “Inhale” without having some extremely overpowering moments of emotion too…so I know I’m not alone in absorbing this beautifully delicate punch to the gut that’ll make each and every listener feel all the feels.  There’s a lot of it that actually reminds me of how the piano in “Pink Rabbits” by The National can break me in the exact same way.  I don’t mind being broken.  I realize that I’m strange and weird and that it’s not all that simple to put me back together again when music makes me like this, but I couldn’t be happier to hear something come out so moving like “Inhale” does, despite the personal devastation it can cause.  For all of 1:49 – I’d have taken a ten minute version of this tune without hesitation…it really speaks volumes on behalf of Aaron’s stunning craftsmanship.  As much as I love hearing this dude sing, he’s also really nailed this instrumental, 100%.

Now…everyone tends to listen on different equipment of course, and beyond that, we all hear things differently anyhow.  For myself personally, I felt like Nosebora’s roll with the writing revealed another significant highlight with “My Truest Regret,” which features Elena M backing up Aaron on the vocals.  The performances are strong, the parts are great, the harmonies are nothing short of fantastic – it’s a really, really good song.  But!  I know, I know…there’s always a but, right?  Can’t I just butt out and leave it at that?  No.  I wouldn’t be me if I did, and I wouldn’t be doing right by Nosebora without sharing what I’m honestly hearing.  To me, for as subtle as “My Truest Regret” was at its core, the bass tones became overpowering in comparison to the rest…and I feel like there’s a mix of this song that would do it a little more justice than we currently hear.  I like the mix of sweetened sadness you’ll find here…almost like it’s borrowing a page out of the Postal Service’s playbook to a degree…or something from the immaculate ballads you’d find on Paloalto’s album Heroes And Villains.  I think Aaron sounds fantastic, and I think Elena M complements his whole sound & vice versa perfectly.  But yeah man…at least on these speakers of mine over here, that bass becomes entirely too dominant over the rest – and that’s a bit tragic in this particular instance…there’s a lot of stuff in “My Truest Regret” that should certainly be heard.  I always tend to look at music from a very simple angle – I ask myself, what’s supposed to be the star of the show, and I let that be the guide for what should reach ears with the least amount of obstacles involved.  To listen to “My Truest Regret” as it stands now, would be like saying the bass is the star of the show, and while I’m not saying there won’t be someone out there that might see it that way, I don’t.  The vocals, the lyrics, the guest-star…you could pick out anything other than the bass and it’d deserve a lot more time in the spotlight than it currently gets in this mix of “My Truest Regret” – but it IS a great song.

Make no mistake, overall, this dude is in incredible shape and deserves GLOBAL recognition for how good he really is.  I listen to a track like “It’s All Downhill From Here” and I practically can’t even speak afterwards, you know what I mean?  It’s spellbinding in the greatest of ways…and another testament to just how well Nosebora is able to get the kind of sound he’s looking to create out of his songwriting and production through the performances being put in.  While it’s a different sound at the end of the day, I found a lot in common with the way that Vaultry wrote a lot of their material on Eulogy…there’s a harder edge to that album, but a ton of similar emotional weight in the most melodic moments too.  Both projects had that same Emo bend to their whole vibe…and both ended up with songs that would be capable of stopping time around you as you listen.  “It’s All Downhill From Here” is nothing short of remarkable.  Every time I got to the end of the first minute, where Aaron would let that last line seem to stop just short like he was considering his words in real-time and connecting with the emotion behind them…I dunno…call me crazy, but I think that’s a fascinating and extremely powerful moment in music.  Dude’s got a solid grip on how to use piano within his songs to great effect…and he’s got an exceptional understanding of how to use his words to say what he really means to say without the bullshit pretense so many incorporate.  He’s unafraid to be vulnerable and real with us, and as a result, he’s come out with a lineup of gripping songs that speak straight to the soul – and “It’s All Downhill From Here” is certainly one of’em.  I love the way he’s used layers of his vocals in this tune & the effects on’em as well.

While the melody of a song like “…Your Lover’s Skin” would definitely have you believing I’d be onboard with this cut completely…I actually think I would have left this off the record.  Nosebora probably disagrees with me on that, and I totally understand – I didn’t create it, and the performance is still one that Aaron would absolutely be able to stand behind.  I look at it this way though – does “…Your Lover’s Skin” further the album or do something differently than we’ve already heard other tracks do?  I’m not so convinced of either of those things personally, despite still enjoying the sound more or less.  I suppose that’s part of why I feel the way I feel, the other reason would be that I think I felt like “…Your Lover’s Skin” ended before it even really had a chance to get going.  By that same token, I’m not all that sure where else it had to go…so in that respect, Nosebora gets the most out of it, but I’m not convinced there’s quite enough to warrant its inclusion on an album that’s got such powerful weight & substance. Don’t get me wrong…I’d never turn it down or off, but it wouldn’t be the cut that brings me back either.

Nosebora’s debut record Unfinished Rooms came out in 2017, and Sink Your Teeth In is technically his third full-length release, following ALRIGHT released back in 2021.  So we’re roughly four or five years into this dude’s professional career – and he’s been doing everything DIY…which should genuinely leave you in awe of what he can accomplish.  Let’s be real here…Aaron’s still on the early side of his career, even though he’s technically been doin’ his thang since around 2012 according to his bio online.  The reality is, he should already be worldwide famous as far as I can tell based on everything I’ve heard, and his future looks incredibly bright if this is the caliber of songs he creates.  Whether it’s as an artist direct, or behind the scenes as a songwriter, this guy has got the X-factor that most just don’t have…and I’m tellin’ ya wholeheartedly, Aaron’s got a MASSIVE career ahead of him.  LISTEN to a track like “I’m Sure You’re Not Holding Your Breath” and try to convince me otherwise!  From what I’ve read, he’s regularly on Twitch performing all the time…and I might just have to learn how to Twitch one day if that’s the way to see this guy play.  Don’t mind me, I’m still living in the mid-90s and just joined Instagram friends – one of these days I’ll surely catch up.  For real y’all – I’m blown away.  Everything about “I’m Sure You’re Not Holding Your Breath” is straight-up magnificent.  I kind of want like…a more pronounced horn section to show up for the finale to put this track right over the top into the stratosphere like The National did with “Eucalyptus” – but don’t mistake that for a complaint, it’s just an observation…and maybe a hope.  As it stands, it’s already brilliant as it gets…and Nosebora even cleverly incorporates the preceding track that I was fairly convinced I’d chop from the lineup.  I’m still convinced I’d chop it out, but it was neat to hear it come back in a different, more realized form.  Lyrically, “I’m Sure You’re Not Holding Your Breath” is another example of Aaron at his best – but so is the performance you’ll hear in the way he sings the verses of this song.  Hooks & chorus-wise…I’m pretty happy with it, though I feel like he still might have a bit more in the tank to bring to that part of the song too.  Like I said – I ain’t complaining – “I’m Sure You’re Not Holding Your Breath” was without question one of my favorite tracks on Sink Your Teeth In.

While “Exhale” isn’t quite “Inhale” for me, I’m not gonna be the guy to tell ya I didn’t love what I heard in this final song either – because I do.  Nosebora has an exquisite way with the way piano creates the most sincere melodies in music, and knows exactly how to use it effectively in a mesmerizing way.  From the rise and fall of the dynamics in the songwriting, to the technique applied in how it’s played – Aaron has done a supremely wonderful job in creating instrumentals that’ll captivate you and keep your attention every bit as much as his songs with lyrics ever could.  I felt like this was a really impressive album from beginning to end, and I think the world of the talent Robeson has and what he’s capable of.  As far as I can tell, he’s got every right and reason to believe he could take this music thang the distance or as far as he wants to take it…for a DIY guy, he’ll exceed even your wildest hopes and/or expectations.  “Exhale” delivers the conclusion ending you wanna hear in a record so moving and substantial…from the ambient sound in the distant background, to the evocative melody up close in your speakers – Nosebora finishes this album off on a thought-provoking final cut that’s heartfelt, engaging, and fully entertaining.

Make sure to find out more about Nosebora from the official pages below!

Main Site:





Find out what we do & how we do it at sleepingbagstudios, and be the next up on our pages by clicking here!


"I’m passionate about what I do, and just as passionate about what YOU do. Together, we can get your music into the hands of the people that should have it. Let’s create something incredible."

Send this to a friend