ROTW: Bare Wires - Artificial Clouds
BARES WIRES - ARTIFICIAL CLOUDS (Tic Tac Totally)
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From Oakland comes Bare Wires, a garage rock trio intent on creating a world around them that appears far more primitive than the one most 21st century Americans are living in. From releasing a VHS video tape that accompanies the vinyl release of their first full length album featured here to the makeover of singer/guitarist Matthew Melton that transforms him into someone who had walked right off the set of Wonderland, Bare Wires are taking some extra steps that most retro-rock bands wouldn't dare.
Thanks to the employment of Jay Reatard's methodical mastering skills, Artificial Clouds plays like it is layered in artificial dust, especially when played directly from the vinyl version. Each cut offers a faux-listic listening experience that can be compared to the sensation record nerds have when discovering a lost KBD single. Therefore I must give this album the highest rating possible in the nostalgic ambiance category. Artificial Clouds contains twelve extremely catchy power-pop tunes featuring thin, sharp rhythm guitars with thick melodic leads (much like The Undertones) and a lo-fi punk'n'roll grit resembling 1976-era Saints. Throughout the record you can hear moments that recall mid-70s English pub rock or possibly New York City proto-punk. Most of what I hear is not too far off from what The Exploding Hearts were trying to replicate just a few short years ago.
However, the aesthetics here can be slightly confusing. Some songs, featuring analog delayed vocals and sound effects, actually hint at possible psychedelic traits. This is especially true of the title track and it's music video, which includes the band performing while video projections of various frantic cloud patterns sprint on and behind them. Yet all of Bare Wires' songs are relevant to a time period when bands like The Nerves and the Ramones were trying to bring the public something different than the acid rock that was popular with the kids of 1976.
From where Bare Wires go from here is anyone's guess. If a regression through rock'n'roll's fad-driven timeline is in order, expect Melton and company to utilize autoharps and bell bottoms on their next LP.
Clicking >>HERE<< will give you a pop-up player where you can hear samples from Artificial Clouds
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