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I thoroughly enjoyed listening to Wild Nothing’s previous long player ‘Nocturne’; an album which incorporated a lot of the best bits of ‘80s indie (China Crisis, The Lotus Eaters, The Smiths) into a nicely polished piece of glacial modern day pop. I’m slightly less enamoured by this follow up EP not because the tracks are particularly poor but because they lack the sp ...

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REVIEWS

Empty Estate by Wild Nothing
1 review. Write a review for us »
6/10 Clinton Staff review, 17 May 2013

I thoroughly enjoyed listening to Wild Nothing’s previous long player ‘Nocturne’; an album which incorporated a lot of the best bits of ‘80s indie (China Crisis, The Lotus Eaters, The Smiths) into a nicely polished piece of glacial modern day pop. I’m slightly less enamoured by this follow up EP not because the tracks are particularly poor but because they lack the sparkle-in-the-rain melancholic Johnny Marr-isms of the previous record, where the guitar chords hit you just there, in that place in your heart that opened up when you first heard The The’s ‘Uncertain Smile’.

Opener ‘The Body in Rainfall’ is very synth based and is more in your Flock of Seagulls vein. ‘Ocean Repeating (Big Eyed Girl)’ is much, much better with a nicely choppy guitar riff and that kind of mystery late night feeling that is felt in the best of Wild Nothings work, the chorus isn’t bad though the synths are a little overdone (studio door ajar, Nick Rhodes sneaks in). ‘On Guyot’ is forgettable, ‘Ride’ sounds quite like Ride. How many songs have been called ‘Ride’ over the years? A lot I’d imagine. It’s a shoegazey M83ish thing. ‘A Dancing Shell’ exemplifies the issue I have with this record, its not bad at all in comparison to a lot of the shit around, it has a nice yearning chorus, I just think that the fluttery synths and hi-end polished production are making Wild Nothing sound like everyone else. Closer ‘Hachiko’ really pushes things in a different direction all Vini Reilly glacial guitars and synth pad ambience.  

Not a bad record and it must be remembered that not all of ‘Nocturne’ was great, it just had a handful of absolute killers AND it was a grower so I’ll be giving this plenty more listens. Overall this is a fair and brave attempt to move the Wild Nothing sound along with synths much more to the fore and a much more technoid production style...but...I liked them as they were. Why does stuff always have to change? Maybe all the great stuff will appear on the next LP.


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