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Spinning Wheels

October 2, 2013 - Nicholas Terry
Nostalgia is a beautiful thing. Not only is it fond memories of the past, it's a time to reflect how the present is different from the past. More importantly, at least for me, it makes me wonder how things will be in the future.

When my friend Chris told me he was joining a new indie band, I was excited to hear what would come of it. The man writes the saddest, yet most comforting songs I've heard in some time. The man has good taste, so surely he was going to align with others just as talented. White Wives is a band that actually wrote a complete album. It's not a set of songs, it's a vision of ideas pieced together to make something special.

"Happeners" opens up with a news clip from the testing of the first nuclear bomb. Then the first verse of "Indian Summer, Indian Summer" kicks in.

"The talking self-reflecting the tv's blues All the savings that they're selling to the fools So tonight we'll be ourselves in these empty rooms Just middle American kids searching for the truth"

It's clear this album is about the struggle to understand and essentially how to deal with the chaos that is this modern age. It's ironic the United States government shut down today as I begin to write this entry. Whether you're 15, 25, or 55, it's hard to swallow what is happening in the world. On the horizon, war is seemingly inevitable. Disregarding the politics of the situation, this album serves as a reminder that we are all human.

There's an age where we all lose ourselves or the path we thought we wanted to take in life. It's different for everyone, but we all reach that vulnerability where we aren't sure what we want our of life. Or rather if the choices we made were the wrong ones. I believe this album captures that vulnerability beautifully. Roger Harvey's voice is reminiscent of a young Conor Oberst. You can hear the passion in his voice that makes it quiver occasionally. It's probably not meant to be artistic, but it makes the songs come alive and makes the listener feel human. I love an album that challenges the listener to let down there walls and let the music take over them. There's listening to music and then there's experiencing it as the author intended.

The second track, "Sky Started Crying" introduces Chris #2 from Anti-Flag. Chris' raspy voice cuts through the melodies and is the polar opposite of Roger's voice. This dynamic of back and forth is more complementary than letting one shine over the other. I believe the band wants to be known as a collective, so this makes sense. "Hungry Ghosts" is one of the more aggressive songs on the album, which leads into the ballad (and a personal highlight) on the album, "Spinning Wheels". The song is a song about life on the road, either on tour or that cobblestone road of life. The album continues to go back and forth between driving rock songs and ballads. Halfway through the album, we reach (currently) my favorite song, "Hallelujah, I'm Mourning". I love the lyrics on this one, but I think it's the way the song is presented as call and response that brings out the best of the band.

This album is for anyone that like Bright Eyes, The Weakerthans, Fugazi or emotionally charged rock music.


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