Saturday, August 25, 2012
Adam Widener - Make Out EP on Fuzz City
Finally got around to writing up Adam's latest single, Make Out!, recorded by Matthew Melton and out on his own Fuzz City label, this is the one we talked about him recording back on my interview with Adam and it's been on heavy rotation for a while now. It's easy to hear why when Matthew was recording this he snapped these up for Fuzz City. When you see a track listing like this on a single, everything running under two minutes, it's a solid guarantee that it's going to be quick pop burst and what you're left with is that gleaming scattered pop trash on that cover. It's fast and dirty, plug in that broken tascam, tape a broken mic to the front of that amp and climb on top of that trash pile...it's time to rock!
A-Side's "Groovy Intuition" kicks out a gritty, thin distortion riff that counts right into a heavy pop verse, Adam has this great garage vocal that ranges from a snarling all attitude delivery to utterly sweet harmonic chorus. The stomp beat drums and twangy guitar in yes, a groovy garage vein. I swear I'm hearing a '60s organ keeping up with this main melody, but don't see it listed on the back. A great moment of beating the strings right into the pickups for clicky rhythm. An equally hyper underground sound as Ty Segall, but minus that big blues squealing influence. Adam's mining the ancient bubblegum pop punk sounds and playing everything on this record entirely himself. A completely amazing feat, able to keep these changes as tight and breakneck as they are.
"Make Out!" has another great cycling harsh guitar tone that explodes right into a Reatard style english punk heavy on the snooty vocal reverb, tightly wound, all those pieces in place. The drop out to nothing slowly piles up the instrumentation back into the punk with metallic reverb hooting and howling.
B-Side starts with "Enemy Dreams", a more punk referencing number at first with it's driving muted string locomotive sound, eventually making way for this jittery as always punchy chorus. You can hear why he would be the perfect choice to tour with Bare Wires, the bundled up energy and punch is all captured here, and it's a shame there's no where to catch this live yet. Same goes for "Slime Walker" and his great high tension guitar tone, he's got that reverb on the whoo!'s in between the fast and loose verses. There's no such thing as a fade out on these tracks, there isn't time, and he's got to move on.
"Make Believe Emergencies" could even be traced back to that Kinks garage sound, Adam's got a natural talent at unique catchy choruses and editing an impulse to keep them repeating. Less is more here and it's a whirlwind of pop punk refined down to the essential elements. Like a brand new batch of moonshine, you don't even give it time to age, it's burning all the way down and man are you going to be messed up when it's over.
Get it on Fuzz City who says:
With an enduring pop sensibility and gripping urgency, Oakland’s Adam Widener has crafted an arresting 5-song collection that was honed in the garage, but conceived in the cosmos. Formerly of The Zygoteens and Bare Wires, these latest recordings portray a seasoned player settling in to his most fully realized work yet.