Wire: Change Becomes Us (Pink Flag/Southbound)

 |   |  <1 min read

Wire: Doubles and Trebles
Wire: Change Becomes Us (Pink Flag/Southbound)

Few bands are worth a biography but Britain's Wire certainly earned the just-published Read & Burn which traces their story from influential post-punk minimalists (the first three albums) into art projects, electronica-engagement, side projects and back into sometimes searing rock (on the excellent Red Barked Tree two years ago).

This album connects quite a few of those dots: they went through unreleased and unrefined live material from their classic period (77-80) and used the ideas as the starter's gun to bend the material into other shapes.

So here are electro-influenced pop (the brief Keep Exhaling, Re-Invent Your Second Wheel, Love Bends), wide-screen prog-metal (Adore Your Island), flat-tack rock takes on their former reductiveness (Stealth of a Stork), delicious ambient-landscape ballads (B/W Silence, & Much Besides), unease (Time Lock Fog, Attractive Space), social politics (Eels Sang, As We Go) and more.

So yes, this hydra-headed collection comes with multiple hyphens, but that's its strength.

It's an album of the old style, one that looks for boundaries and heads towards them at speed rather than sits in the safe place.

Wire rarely made safe music in their 35-year off-on career and, pleasingly, they aren't starting now.

Recommended to old fans, the willing and seat-belt wearers.

Elsewhere has an archive interview with Wire's Colin Newman here

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Hollywoodfun Downstairs: "The Mancunian Swing" (Muzai)

Hollywoodfun Downstairs: "The Mancunian Swing" (Muzai)

Things not quite in alignment here? One part concept album, another part “What I did on my holidays”, this debut from Wellington noise-rockers apparently documents singer Kurt... > Read more

BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2009 St Vincent:Actor (4AD)

BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2009 St Vincent:Actor (4AD)

Not having heard the (apparently) much acclaimed debut Marry Me by St Vincent (aka Annie Clark out of Texas) means coming to her particular talents with fairly high expectations -- and she doesn't... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Arinushka: Old Faith (ARC Music)

Arinushka: Old Faith (ARC Music)

Years ago I was given a birthday card which read, "If you didn't know your age, how old would you be?" Let's flip that a little and ask about this fascinating album, "If you... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Fraser and Naomi Browne of Paper Cranes

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE SONGWRITER QUESTIONNAIRE: Fraser and Naomi Browne of Paper Cranes

The Japanese writing on the cover of the debut album album by Auckland's Paper Cranes (and the band name, of course) alert you to the fact that there is something a little different about them.... > Read more