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Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Review: Wire - Send

Wire has a website. Excuse me while I look at it........and..done. 2003's Send is comprised of seven tracks from the two Burn and Read EP's (2002) plus four new ones, appearing after twelve years of side projects, DJ work and fizz-widdling. It's a great record and about fricking time.

In the last few years a number of great bands decided to put their self-indulgence on the back-burner and release albums with relevance beyond the usual suspects of record store clerks and kool-aid drinkers. I thank The Rentals, The Strokes and every other band who enhanced nostalgia for a time when punk and new wave were variations on the same theme, and it wasn't a crime to dance and enjoy yourself. Wire were strict followers of the anti-art creed that dictated a band should never cater to the desires of their fans, and better yet to avoid all eye contact and give 'em what they least want. Send is exactly what the people want, and Wire had to be aware that if their first album after twelve years was another The First Letter they might as well pack it in for good.

Grounded in walls of noise and straight ahead song structures, Send recalls the trifecta of their first three albums and adds the pounding intensity of Killing Joke. Drummer Robert Gotobed (no relation to Holly Golightly) is really a drummer here, as opposed to the percussionist of earlier albums. "Comet" and "Read And Burn" are my favorite tracks. "Being Watched" has a funky Peter Gabriel feel but the lyrics are lame ("You like to be watched and be the watcher too"). "Nice Streets Above" and "Spent" have that Killing Joke zeitgeist while "You Can't Leave Now" is slow and gothy. "Half Eaten" sounds like the "The Name Song" ("Banana-fana-fo-fada"), which is great if you can do it with your friend's names. Be the hit of any post-punk progressive pop party.

Send is great. It's everything it should and needed to be. It's today, 1977 and next Tuesday. Buy it, copy it, and cut off people's heads with it like the alien bad guy in the Dolf Lundgren film I Come In Peace. Dolf has a master's degree in chemical engineering. So there.

5 Comments:

Blogger Robert G. said...

That's all well and good, but what about Killing Joke?

I'm not sure what you mean about the "drummer" versus "percussionist" thing. Elaborate--or else.

The First Letter is a good record. I shall prove this objectively, if need be.

8:18 PM

 
Blogger Emerson said...

Yes, what about Killing Joke?

I have, in my hand, a cd-dvd set of Wire performing on Rockpalast on 2/14/1979. Gotobed does everything BUT play the skins part of his drums kit. I also consider Stewart Copleand to be a percussionist. I have my own definition maybe but it works for me.

You can defend The First Letter all you want but I'll only read the first eight chapters.

Did you get the chit I sent you yet, Robert? The stuff I sent across international borders?

2:57 AM

 
Blogger Robert G. said...

In bed by 7, my hot sweaty foot, sir.

Most of Wire's output from P. Flag onward has used standard drum kit. The skins weren't where the sonic experimentation was going on, at least not in the studio. Their bizarre 1980 show included in "Document & Eyewitness" is another story though.

Don't mess with a drummer (lapsed).

5:56 AM

 
Blogger roxanol said...

I thought I was like the only one who knew about Wire besides the weirdos that listened to them in like England or whatever when they came out!!!

Or perhaps you are those weirdos.....

(PS... I am still way punker than you to the third degree squared with an ANARCHY symbol on top!!!!)

(PPS... ok im not)

9:07 PM

 
Blogger Emerson said...

Roxanol:

Welcome to the club. Gooble Gobble, gooble gobble we accept you, one of us, one of us.

8:35 AM

 

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