Wedlock - Witnesses
In many respects, North Carolina's Wedlock is a band displaced in time and genre. The band's latest release, Witnesses, evokes sounds akin to Nine Inch Nails sans the brooding thralldom or Ministry before they discovered metal guitars. On one hand, Wedlock embraces electronic pop-rock rooted in the late 1980s without the sterility or goth-affected industrial languish.
However, it also bears the good-natured danceability associated with the 1990s era of electronica. You could call Wedlock a throwback band, to a time when Moby, Orbital and La Bouche ruled the earth. Pop-friendly vocals. Yet grinding beneath it all, Wedlock wields an ambient, mischievous air of experimentalism that really hasn't existed in electronic music since Art of Noise.
The vocals complement the songwriting style classically, as the singer bears a resonating tone that blends the heartfelt sincerity of Simon Le Bon with the calculated emotion of Peter Gabriel. "ST," which features Wedlock mainman Paul Allgood's daughter Bryanna Rain, plunges further into Gabriel's realm, bearing a spatial narrative construction that would not have been out of place on his 2002 Up album.
Whether or not there is room in the 21st Century for this kind of music is completely up for debate. But I can say this about Wedlock - the band performs with an earnest belief in its craft. And it is that authenticity that pulls the band away from the cookie cutter, crank ‘em out, pop rubbish that has plagued the air waves for years. So if you are a fan of electronic music with a fun, kinetic energy, then Wedlock definitely has something to offer.
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