REVIEWED: The Wides - Self Titled

Although albums are not always classifiable as a specific genre, and some would argue rightly that classifying music helps stifle creativity, it is still a valuable tool for music addicts to sift through their vice.

Of all the genres present in The Wides self-titled release, post-punk is a main ingredient. For those unfamiliar with post-punk, it's what happens after releasing angst for several years.  In the process, the artists become quite proficient at their craft; since they've been playing riffs at the speed of light in their sleep. In comparison to punk, post-punk is easy listening, in the sense that it's easier on the ears, but that's an over-simplification, since post-punk is definitely more complicated than punk. With more dynamic range, tension, build-ups, time changes, and longer song length. There is a larger palette of colours used here.

There is no requirement that one must form a punk band and get a punk rock degree before getting more loans and moving on to your post-punk doctorate, but it definitely helps. When you listen to The Wides you might suspect that they have their degree and are now pursuing a doctorate and you'd be right as some of the members were in Shinobi (

This album is a hot summers day beside the pool.  Standing beside the pool with one leg slightly bent and checking the temperature with your big toe. The album opener "Fuller Terrace" starts with a single guitar riff panned to the left. It's hot and you want to cool off but that temperature differential has you in a tentative state.  It's a catchy riff. Are you ready to rock? So someone sneaks up from behind you and pushes you in.  The whole band kicks in at the two second mark. Although shocking, it's also a relief because it's what you need. It doesn't matter if you're ready to rock because The Wides will make you ready.

The album cover depicts a tool which appears to be an ornate trephine. Which begs the question, is this a conceptual album written from the perspective of a trephinee?  Much of the lyrical structure repeats a line two, three or four times before moving on to the next.  "Voir Dire" is a prime example of this as it contains two unique lines. The first line is repeated three times, then the second one repeated three times, and then some wavering between the two.  Maybe The Wides are trying to speak to us post-modern zombies and feel it is necessary to repeat things to get our attention.

Though I have never seen The Wides live I have a suspicion that their live show is a lot of fun.  The lyrics are catchy, they're almost chants, and encourage a sing-a-long by people you would not expect to sing, but have decided to, due to their temporarily self-imposed tephinous state from one substance or another.

But don't take my word for it, listen and decide for yourself. (

Matthieu Cormier


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow what a review. Turns out I'm only luke-warm on the track, oh well.