Album Review
Wild Light - Adult Nights Album Cover

Wild Light - Adult Nights

Reviewed by
Wild LightAdult Nights
Record Label: Columbia
Release Date: March 3, 2009
Wild Light have been receiving a lot of attention for their single “California on My Mind”, and with good reason. The track is simple but not too simple; repetitive but not annoying. So okay, Reader, you’ve got this track lodged in your brain and you want to know if this is some buzz band throwaway, like say a Rooney. The answer is yes and no. It’s ballsy to kick off the record with the single and leave the listener to 12 more uncharted-territory tracks, but Adult Nights propels from its strong start and never really loses the momentum hook-wise. Having said that, there’s definitely no improvements made on the “California” style, and so while no individual track sticks out sorely, that’s exactly the problem: no individual track sticks out at all. You’d probably be better off buying the single.

Nothing is groundbreaking about the album; there are plenty of borrowed tricks from peers like Arcade Fire, and none with the same artistic flair – but the songs really are catchy enough to hold their weight. Subtle flourishes like the keyboard leads in “New Hampshire” truly make the song. Then there’s the stop-start rhythms of “The Party (Oh My God)”, which save it from being a mere Interpol replica. It’s an extremely listenable disc, even if it never finds its own style exactly.

But there’s really only one moment on Adult Nights where the group seem to have their own personality, and that’s in the folky “Heart Attack”, easily the most memorable song on the album (save for the single.) There’s equal parts The Bends-era Radiohead, Arcade Fire, and Arcade Fire. You might have a better time listening to The Bends once and then Arcade Fire twice, but Wild Light may have just saved you some time.

It was tough for me to get used to the fact that the vocalist sounds like he used to front Sixpence None The Richer, The Cardigans, and Matchbox 20 (in that order.) But if you take your indie rock with a subtle hint of yodel, then Wild Light should be right up your alley. Besides, once the album has been running for a little bit, you tend to forget about those vocal quirks anyways.

Catchy single aside, Wild Light may have a tough time being remembered. I can foresee either a radically different, genre-swapped sophomore release or else a quiet drift into the background of popular music. But there will surely remain some indie music enthusiasts who make it their responsibility to keep up with the group.

Recommended if You Like
Arcade Fire, Guster, Paper Rival

Judge For Yourself
This review is a user submitted review from OKComputer1016. You can see all of OKComputer1016's submitted reviews here.
Displaying posts 1 - 7 of 7
12:44 PM on 02/19/09
Occupy Your Mind
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RamInGoreville's Avatar
I just sent my review in for this like two days ago! Guess you beat me to it..

Good review, but I found the album to be a lot better than what you claim.
02:00 PM on 02/19/09
Prison Strength
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hockeyguitar99's Avatar
I don't think that's the right cover art...

Good review nonetheless. I'm working on my review of it right now.
02:43 PM on 02/19/09
Bright and Early
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JayBee420's Avatar
I changed that shit 10 seconds after I hit play. Heard it a million times. Bands like this need to know that 1995 is over, and that cheesy themes like sex, drugs, and curse words only work for goofy ass bands like Blink 182.
04:53 PM on 02/19/09
Never too fat to fly
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apresnuledeluge's Avatar
I love California On My Mind and New Hampshire, but I usually don't find myself listening too far into the album past those two tracks.
06:46 AM on 02/20/09
Gregory Robson
Under Rug Swept
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Gregory Robson's Avatar
I changed that shit 10 seconds after I hit play. Heard it a million times. Bands like this need to know that 1995 is over, and that cheesy themes like sex, drugs, and curse words only work for goofy ass bands like Blink 182.
This guy said it all. It's a bit "been there, done that," but it's also pretty buoyant too. I dig it.
02:35 PM on 03/06/09
Registered User
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No Avatar Selected
Guess I don't need to write a review. Everyone else is. Right cover art. Great Review. The first two tracks are the best.

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