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Weaves - Weaves (Album Review)

Friday, 24 June 2016 Written by Laura Johnson

Two years ago, following the release of Weaves’ debut EP, Jasmyn Burke told Rolling Stone: "We don't want to necessarily identify with a scene, and I think our music holds true to that. It's a bit out there, no matter what kind of music you like."

The Toronto-based four-piece's first full-length paints a picture of a band that has advanced well beyond the boundaries of their early work, but the sentiment still rings true. The album opener, Tick, lays the foundations both musically and lyrically, with Burke declaring: “This is just the beginning of what I want to say”.

Throughout, even during individual songs, they ricochet between genres, darting between punk, folk, garage-rock, indie and soul. On Coco and Birds & Bees, Burke’s vocals recall Speedy Ortiz’s Sadie Dupuis, while the latter half of Two Oceans smack of Bikini Kill-era Kathleen Hanna. On Candy there are hints of Karen O, back in her ‘Fever To Tell’ days.

These likenesses aside, Burke still has a distinctive voice of her own, effortlessly switching between ear-splitting screeches and softly sung sequences delivered with an endearing air of awkward confidence.

Pair her performance with Morgan Waters’ often manic, off-kilter guitar melodies, showcased best on Coo Coo and One More, and Spencer Cole’s intricate, yet beautifully understated, beats and you’ve got a combination that you wouldn’t want to fuck with.

Coo Coo, a song addressing Burke’s frustration at having to cut someone out of her life,  has a composition that echoes the extremes discussed in the lyrics,  while Human follows a similarly uneven path, powered again by Cole’s driving beats, this time with a cowbell thrown in for good measure. Despite clocking in at a conventional 3 minutes and 40 seconds, it takes so many twists and turns you’ll forget where it began.

But it’s not all chaos. Weaves exercise some restraint on Eagle, which adds yet another string to the band’s bow. The closer, Stress, possesses a simplicity that is absent from its predecessors, allowing Waters’ guitar melodies to flourish. Burke observes: “I want to live hectic free.”

With this record Weaves have left no stone unturned. The influences are varied, the arrangements brilliantly erratic, thoughtful and considered. Part of its charm lies in the occasional feeling that it may all fall apart at any moment, but the execution is exemplary. Weaves may defy genres, but with a debut of this standard they’ve set their own bar exceptionally high.

Weaves Upcoming Tour Dates are as follows:

Thu June 30 2016 - DERBY Venue
Fri July 01 2016 - BEDFORD Esquires
Sat July 02 2016 - ALDERSHOT West End Centre
Sun July 03 2016 - BRIGHTON Hope and Ruin
Mon July 04 2016 - GUILDFORD Boileroom
Thu July 07 2016 - MANCHESTER Castle Hotel
Fri July 08 2016 - WINCHESTER Railway
Sat July 09 2016 - MILTON KEYNES Craufurd Arms
Mon July 11 2016 - READING Purple Turtle
Tue July 12 2016 - LEICESTER Musician
Thu July 14 2016 - LONDON Shacklewell Arms
Sun July 17 2016 - GLASGOW Nice and Sleazy
Mon July 18 2016 - NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE Think Tank
Tue July 19 2016 - LEEDS Brudenell Social Club
Wed July 20 2016 - LIVERPOOL Studio 2
Thu July 21 2016 - NOTTINGHAM Bodega Social Club

Click here to compare & buy Weaves Tickets at Stereoboard.com.


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