WEDNESDAY – ” Twin Plagues “

Posted: December 10, 2021 in MUSIC

 I like to stumble towards a band with no agenda, no purpose, uncovering sound almost on accident. This is how I first heard Wednesday. The band came to me and I don’t remember how, or why. They simply arrived,  “I Was Trying To Describe You To Someone” soaked into summer of 2020, and in sound, in spirit, in central concerns and the execution of them, it took me back to an era before the current era, which I’d needed at the time.

Wednesday turn old memories into emotional kindling. Led by vocalist and lyricist Karly Hartzman, the Asheville five-piece takes ghostly imagistic echoes of small-town ennui and sets them ablaze in the searing flames of fuzzed-out shoegaze, watching them burn away oh so prettily. From the twangy Americana balladry of “How Can You Live If You Can’t Love How Can You If You Do” to the gnarled heaviness of the title track, these past traumas make for some remarkably present indie rock.

I love “Twin Plagues” first for its songs, plainly. If you, listening to Wednesday for the first time around or even the second time around, stumble onto this album, I promise you the songs will be what grab you first, beyond any of my foolish high-level emotional theorizing or projections. Every band that loves the pursuit of their craft the way this band does is one to follow, because getting to sit on the side lines and watch them level up is a real generosity. “Twin Plagues” is overflowing with hooks, but what most delighted me about the band from the start has taken a leap: they have managed, somehow, to get even better at structuring their noise from one movement of a song to the next.

The idea of the “song” itself is flexible in their hands, so much so that each song holds two, or three songs within. This, again, generosity. “Cody’s Only” is a ballad until it begins to threaten a storm of volume, and then, in its final act, it becomes something else altogether. “One More Last One” is a shoegaze-y trip that swells and swells until it overflows, but it doesn’t stop. It keeps offering and offering and offering. I say “noise,” and never in a dismissive sense. Everything has a place, and so much of its place is to serve the true heart of this album, and the true heart of Wednesday’s music, which is allowing cracks through which tenderness can enter and exit as needed.

Orindal

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