Harder. Faster. Louder. Wavves’ Nathan Williams abides by the punk rock code of conduct, but puts his own sun-worshipping So-Cal-centric spin on the equation. Blending Beach Boys-style falsettos, four-chord power-pop, and pervasive self-loathing, King of the Beach, finds a balance between lo-fi grit and pop-punk accessibility.
Wavves third studio album, King of the Beach has more studio sheen and polish than its predecessors, and casts a wider net in terms of song style and scope. There is the saccharin-sweet shuffle of Baseball Cards, the slamdance-ready Post Acid, and the sunny ‘60’s harmonies of Baby Say Goodbye, complete with sha la la-backing vocals.
But while genres may shift, the music’s punk origins and Williams’ artistic and personal insecurities shine through on each track. On Take on the World, Williams declares, “I still hate my music/ it’s all the same/ when it drips like posture/ my head just hangs/ and I hate myself, man/ but who’s to blame/ I guess I’m just fucked up/ or too insane.” So it’s a refreshing change of pace when the lyrics take on a positive spin. On the hyper-speed Post Acid, Williams intones, “I’m just having fun with you.”
No need to be so dour, Nathan, we are having fun with you too.
Wavves’ third full-length album, King of the Beach, releases TODAY from Fat Possum Records.
Timbre Tantrum’s rating 4 out of 5 stars.
Wavves plays an intimate record release show this Wednesday (8/4/10) at the historic punk venue, Madame Wongs in Los Angeles’ Chinatown district. Tickets are SOLD OUT, but check back with Timbre Tantrum on Thursday, when we will give you a first hand account of the festivities.