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Wild Nothing

Empty Estate

Wild Nothing
8
With heavy, scuzzy opening guitar chords, it's clear that Empty Estate will be a departure from the silky, reverb-heavy, '80s-style dream pop that Virginia's Wild Nothing have become known for. There's a striking sense of command and confidence evident on this EP, which Tatum previously developed on sophomore album Nocturne and has fine-tuned here. This set expands upon the nostalgic aura of previous albums to include more electronic elements and a flurry of catchy synth riffs ("Ride"), focusing heavily on beats and bass lines that serve to consistently propel the collection onwards. There's a directness, both in thinking and motion, to this throwback to the glory days of feverous '80s synths and hook-laden pop beats, so the stark contrast of the sparse, murmuring ambient chill of closer "Hachiko" is an interesting choice worth noting. Experimental lead single "A Dancing Shell" is without a doubt Empty Estate's standout track and a brilliant cool kid head nod to Talking Heads (unaffected, vocoder-ed speak-singing included), while the instrumental "On Guyot" is the record's weak point, sounding far too long for an interlude. "Tell me what you think of me," Tatum beckons at the start of the album ("The Body In Rainfall"), but it's clear he doesn't plan on waiting for an answer. His experimentation in the diverse '80s sonic field will continue; we're just along for the ride. (Captured Tracks)

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