Folkwords (January 27, 2014)

 

‘Swimming in the Rain’ from Wobble and ‘Wheeze - well worth lending an ear

 

 

My wariness radar usually hits high-gain when an email begins: ‘We’re a relatively new band and we’ve just completed our first EP’. The resulting recording often ranges from a bunch of drunk mates in a jam session through a copy of a thousand bands I’ve heard before to something vaguely interesting that needs tidying up. The result in this instance, is none of the above, and it’s well worth lending an ear.

‘Swimming in the Rain’ from acoustic duo ‘Wobble’ aka Peter Johnston (vocals, guitar, elf-throttling) and ‘Wheeze’ aka Adam Summerhayes (fiddle, vocal growling and squawking) is clearly a snapshot of their undoubted range and breadth, jumping as it does across the scope of their music. The time when an album decides to make its appearance will be the time when the self-penned taster offered here could well evolve into a serious banquet.

A brief trip round their website www.wobbleandwheeze.co.uk exposes their wit and clear sense of absurdity, which translates perfectly into their songs. The well-constructed lyrics are sharp, discerning and acutely observational, the melodies tight and engaging. There’s the ironic ‘The Receptionist’, complete with growling and squawking, punching out its satirical message, by contrast, the essential melancholy of ‘Broken’ offers equally insightful lyrics but as tender as could be, with a fiddle line that fits the tone like a glove. Then comes another gear-change with ‘Ten Years’ - fast-paced fiddle and guitar charging away with its life-sharing lyric and not a trace of over-sentiment in sight. I would love to hear the live version. And to close, another outing for the acerbic lyric “… and if it seems that hope is going down the drain you can either give up or try swimming in the rain” with the eponymous ‘Swimming In The Rain’.

A debut EP either makes me sigh with relief as it ends or wish that they’d gone for a debut album … this definitely falls into the latter category. Album soon please chaps, this is good stuff.

 

Reviewer: Tim Carroll

 

"Well worth a listen ... undoubted range and breadth ... sharp and discerning ... acutly observational ... as tender as could be ...album soon please chaps ... could well evolve into a serious banquet"