>We started yesterday with a quotation, and that shaped up pretty well, so here’s another one: “The goodness of the true pun is in the direct ratio of its intolerability.” That one was from Edgar Allen Poe, and it makes us think our writing has some associated respectability when really, it doesn’t. In all honesty, we still haven’t totally figured out what he’s trying to say. But anyway, – PUNS! – we can’t get enough of ‘em at A New Band A Day.
So, inevitably, it’s Another Day, Another World-Class Pun. Today’s New Band is – wait for it – Awesome Wells. His music is soft, strong and long, like Andrex toilet paper, except you wouldn’t want to wipe any part of your body on this – it’s too good.
The Highs and Lows of… is an eight-minute long magnus opus, that starts with chanting rounds, clapping, brass and a military drumbeat and then decides that, having started with such a rich and varied sound palette, everything else may as well be thrown into the pot as well. Strings, glockenspiels, accordions and samples of big bands then all make a fleeting appearance. On paper, this sounds like a recipe for overblown, rock-star-experimenting-with -new-solo-material- type disaster, but Awesome Wells clearly has a deft touch and all the sounds are massaged gently into something that is not only coherent, but hypnotically soothing.
After that, how many people would then have the audacity to cover the Theme From Twin Peaks? To anyone who has spent hours drawn in my David Lynch’s masterpiece of TV weirdness, the song has such strongly defined emotions stitched to it that this too seems like a bold step too far, but Awesome Wells gets away with it in style. Removing it almost completely from its’ origins and yet retaining every haunting nuance is some achievement in itself, but to then pull it away even further into new, fascinating places, as the five-minute weird-out at the end does is evidence of a special talent.
If you combined mid-90′s Tortoise with the entire BBC Sound Effects Library, you may come close to approximating Awesome Wells‘ sound. But you wouldn’t come anywhere near to his precise, caring control – the sounds ebb, flow and weave together to the point where any lingering doubts are assuaged by the gleefulness of the sonic journey you’ve just taken. Make yourself feel underwhelmed by your comparative lack of talent here!