Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Local band on the brink

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I had gone to see Wild Light, a four piece out of Manchester, New Hampshire that seems to be making a break for the mainstream. Okay, I went because it was in Keene and only 10 miles away, but it was a pretty good night anyway. Arcade Fire fans should note that Tim Kyle who plays keyboard, bass and guitar in Wild Light was a founding member of AF.

Here’s the best part of the show review:
This evening, and perhaps always, Wild Light conveys a sense of embarking on a journey, of leaving home and heading for parts unknown. Early on, they juxtapose two of their best songs, one a frustrated love song about a girl who leaves town (“California on My Mind”), the other a tribute to the frozen familiarity of home (“New Hampshire”). “California”, with its big four-on-the-floor beat and triumphant guitar chords sounds like a romp, even though the lyrics are sad. Guitarist Alexander is suppressing a grin as he sings the buoyant tagline, “Fuck today, fuck San Francisco, fuck California.” “New Hampshire” balances a melancholy, nostalgic verse with uplifting chorus. The body of the song enumerates local landmarks—a fork in the road where a car crashed, a childhood house with three generations of history—but the refrain loops and soars wordlessly, braced by strident, pushing drums.

And here’s the rest.

An early performance at Randall's Island

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