WEAVES: WIDE OPEN

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       Weaves is a band that has, in my books, been under the radar and thus underrated. Every since I stumbled upon their NPR Tiny Desk Concert last summer, I knew they were destined for greatness and well deserved recognition. With offbeat vocals and impeccable grooves that bend genres, it's hard to deny the incomparable energy and sound they bring forth. Their sophomore album, Wide Open, is a work that exemplifies this genius and provides them with the spotlight they so well deserve.

    The Canadian four piece formed in 2012, comprised of Jasmyn Burke (vocals), Morgan Waters (guitar), Spencer Cole (drums) and Zach Bines (bass). They’ve released an EP in 2014 and a self-titled album in 2016, yet neither work truly compares to the magnitude of Wide Open.

     The record illustrates the band’s versatility, as their sound blends influence from rock, r&b, 80s pop, and the happenings of the world around them. Burke has a raw, imperfect voice that has a captivating quality to it. Her tone is capable of drawing you in with each line, whether it's during a time of self-reflection and melancholy like on “Puddle” or in an effort to create rebellion, as during “Scream.” Burke’s tone paired with her insightful and witty lyrics create an environment within each track that makes the listener feel as if they’re the only one being spoken to in that moment.

     Some stand out tracks on Wide Open are hard to pick but easily identifiable. “Slicked,” which reveals a more mature sound of Weaves’ early work, is an uptempo, groovy and gritty song perfect for pumping you up in the morning. The record’s title track is also a fascinating one, as it gives off an ethereal vibe with minimalist percussion and guitar as well as lyrics that are abstract and profound.

      Aside from the ricocheting vibrancy and outstanding instrumental aspects, there is something additional to the respective tracks and work as a whole that constitutes its grandiose feeling, and that is the emotions behind the songs as well as the emotions they attempt to convey. The lyrics, as mentioned earlier, are impressive and empowering but it is also important to note how political they are. Each song, regardless of whether it's fast paced or more of a mellow tempo, is an act of defiance and activism in bringing forth the importance of recognizing the struggles of everyday life as well as the struggles being met in today’s political climate. The album, it's sound, it's themes, and it's overall vibe is something astonishing and necessary, as it provides a sense of comfort and hope among the havoc of today’s world.

     Wide Open is for anyone desiring not only a stray from the usual but also a taste of something so honest it will make you want to be more honest with yourself.

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LYDIA VELAZQUEZ