(Artwork care of Karen Ramsay (www.karenramsay.com), profile photo care of brianlackeyphotography.com)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

CD Review - Wakey! Wakey!, Almost Everything I Wish I'd Said The Last Time I Saw You (2010)

If the Eskimos have 50 words for snow, then Wakey!Wakey! has at least as many uses for lyrical repetition. Perhaps it's the iterative reassurance of Almost Everything ("It feels bad now, but it's gonna get better..") or the amused dwelling of Feral Love ("I bet you don't go crazy like you used to..."), maybe even the obsessive Car Crash ("At least you were thrown clear, cause I'm still stuck in here...").

It might even be repetition for the mere sake of sounding cool as in Square Peg Round Hole or the earnestness of Dance So Good. Over time, the echo becomes a little distracting, but the indie pop groove of Almost Everything I Wish I'd Said The Last Time I Saw You... is still engaging.

Dance So Good is a great example of where the lyrical repetition and music come together perfectly. It paints a picture of disintegrating relationship, a sense of what was there (and is now slipping away).
You're so beautiful...
So, tell me why we're talking when we dance so good...

This is a tight three minutes of ache, where no explanation will ever be enough. It takes me back to 17 years old, where the real world imploded what used to be a sweet thing. This conveys an emotional truth, well beyond clever lyrics.

The music is bright and open throughout the album. In some ways, there's a Celtic rock sensibility underlying the songs, maybe it's singer Michael Grubbs' accent or the way the lyrics echo. There's also a slight sense of Billy Joel buried somewhere within the songs, which have a singer/songwriter feel, despite the band adding their voices.

This is a perfect CD to mix with a nice Pinot Gris (King Estates?) - earthy, with hints of honey and citrus. "I hope you know it's a miracle, a miracle, a miracle..."

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