Wye Oak’s New Album Is Thoughtful and Haunting

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Wye OakThe Louder I Call, The Faster It RunsMerge
Singer Jenn Wasner has made music under various guises, including Flock of Dimes and Dungeonesse, but her most enduring and productive project is her partnership with fellow multi-instrumentalist Andy Stack in the duo Wye Oak. The Louder I Call, The Faster It Runs is a stirring gem that makes full use of Wasner’s strong, forthright voice, which could handle a Broadway aria or her typical brooding art-pop equally well. Mixing reflective acoustic textures and buzzing electronic sounds, sometimes in the same song, she offers calm reflections on the search for meaning and fulfillment in a stressful world. While the artful lyrics are sometimes abstract to the point of being opaque, there’s no missing the anxious yearning of the title track or the moving uplift of the haunting closing song, “I Know It’s Real.” Don’t listen to The Louder I Call, The Faster It Runs in bits and pieces. It’s a thoughtful work with the sweeping flow of an old-fashioned concept album, and well worth your full attention.