Wormburner - Placed by the Gideons
Record Label – DIVE Records
Release – May 25th, 2010
It’s not like I spend my time huddled out in a desert at dusk, listening to bands strum their hearts out with wonderfully off-kilter indie tracks. If I did, I have a feeling that Wormburner would be that band – never mind the fact that they’re from New York and would probably find themselves much more at home navigating subways than traversing the deserts of the western U.S. To say the absolute least, these guys could easily fit in with a Coachella slot in a future lineup (you hear that, promoters?).
The album’s opener, “The Interstate,” ultimately nabs my attention and my vote for favorite track on the album. With an upbeat, finger-tapping tune and the introduction of two characters, Sally and Tony, Wormburner have caught on to something good. Placed by the Gideons is not a collection of love songs or wishes for better days; it is a chronicle of Sally and Tony’s adventures, documented to the tune of simple, catchy guitar and the occasional synthesizer.
For an extra special little bonus, make sure to check out the two versions of Wormburner’s track “Breaker Breaker.” The “Highway Fatality” version has a slightly more detached, electronic feel to it, while the “Gypsy Murder Ballad” takes on a fitting acoustic strum for the album’s final minutes.
Wormburner have the essence of a band made for the road. These songs are made for drives down long stretches of highway. While these may not be tracks you will ever hear with the flip of a radio station, the drive of guitars provides a fitting change to the predictable buzz and static of the FM dial.
With only the occasional use of backing vocals, Wormburner maintain a raw take on music from beginning to end. The vocals are just rough enough and the instrumentals never overwhelm. This New York City five-piece is reminiscent of well-known punks taking on solo acoustic projects, from 7 Seconds’ Kevin Seconds to Strung Out’s Jason Cruz.
Here’s to betting that all twelve tracks on Placed by the Gideons sound just as good as an acoustic one-man set, if not better, than the recorded versions.