Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Wye Oak – A Band Review

Guest contributor: Clark G.
     "Shriek" is the latest album released by the band Wye Oak. The band is the duo of Andy Stack on drums and keyboard and Jenn Wasner on guitar and vocals. They are based in Baltimore, Maryland.
     What strikes those of us familiar with Wye Oak's previous work is Wasner's sudden departure from playing lead guitar to playing the bass on the new album. In an interview, Wasner said she felt the lead guitar competed too much with her vocals and that she felt the bass would be a better fit.
     Well, Wasner is an excellent lead guitarist, as is evident on previous works "Civilian" and "The Knot," but she may be right. "Shriek" is a compilation of songs that feature bass, drums and synth - creating melodic, pulsating rhythms as a background, while Wasner's vocals soar above and paint a picture.
     While I love the new album, part of me hopes that Wye Oak can find a way to have the bass and lead guitar share time on the next project.

          Personal favorites from "Shriek" are "Glory", "Sick Talk" and "Schools of Eyes." Unfortunately, only "Glory" is currently accessible on Soundcloud, so the other two songs are embedded as Youtube videos.
     "Civilian" on the 2011 album of the same name is a good song to hear the difference with the lead guitar. 
      “Glory” by Wye Oak

      “Civilian” by Wye Oak - the 2011 Wye Oak

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