Artist: WAX WAV (Twitter, Instagram, BandCamp, SoundCloud, Spotify)
Hailing from Philadelphia, PA, WAX WAV beautifully and spectacularly mixes elements of punk, power pop, emo, and indie rock into an infectious sound that is best described as universal. Are you a fan of Beach Slang? Then WAX WAV is for you. Superchunk? Yup. The Promise Ring? Absolutely. The Primitives, Antarctigo Vespucci, and Cheap Trick? Yes, yes, and yes. The Thermals, Teen Idols, and The Replacements? Yes, yes, and yes. How about Japandroids, Jawbreaker, or The Epoxies? Yes, yes, and yes. Chainsaw Kittens, Elvis Costello, Tiny Stills, Redd Kross, Muncie Girls, Bob Mould, Fresh, Doughboys, RVIVR, Generation X? Yes, ten times over, YES! Seriously if you are a fan of great, catchy, punchy rock 'n' roll then this band is for you!
The band released their debut EP1 in late 2017, which I sadly missed at the time. In fact I found the band thanks to the Fugazi Repeater episode of The Great Albums podcast which included WAX WAV's Nick Palmer as a guest. First off, the podcast was awesome and I highly recommend it. Second, Palmer discussed WAX WAV's new record EP2 and I was immediately intrigued. So I headed over to my Spotify app and within the opening chords of "Modern Western World" I was hooked. The song smacked me across the face with its punchy hooks, potent lyrics, and undeniable brilliance. One song in and I knew that not only had I found one of the best records of the year, I'd found one of the best new bands out there today.
The next song on the EP "Comfort" attacks the privilege of suburban America while at the same time boasts one of the truest lines in a chorus that I have ever heard. A line that had me immediately singing along because it's not only a truth, it's my truth. "There's comfort in rock and roll" says it all. Next up is the band's first ballad "The Blandness," a beautifully haunting song about self discovery, hope, kindness, and the ups and downs in the journey of life.
I was face to face with hope but then I turned away and set out on my ownFinally EP2 closes out with the anthem "Come to Your Senses" a powerful and poppy number that feels big enough to fill the largest stadiums.
Thought I might control the chaos of the world as if I sat upon a throne
Even though I turned my back on more than one occasion, hope kept coming home
To show me love, show me kindness, show me how to make it through the blindness
What did you do? I could have told you soFrom top to bottom this is an absolutely perfect release. EP2 will make you want to dance, sing along, and make you think all at the same time. Oh and if that isn't enough, this damn thing gets better each and every time you listen to it! Seriously. I really can't through enough praise or superlatives at this record or this band. With just two EPs under their belt, WAX WAV have created something incredibly special and I cannot wait to hear what they do next!
These kinds of things you gotta see right through
They're gonna break you down to your low
They're gonna tell you what you gotta do
You're gonna run in place for a while
Before you turn around and see
Them kinds of people with the confident tone
Are gonna sell you what you gotta be
You gotta come to your senses
Don't wanna rot in a dayless room
Now come to your senses
Not too fast, not too soon