Wheat Hope and Adams (Sugar Free)

National Records

Wheat

Hope and Adams (Sugar Free)

Underneath the lo-fi façade of Hope and Adams, the second full-length release from Boston-based trio Wheat, is a straightforward and unabashed exercise in pop songcraft that's as refined as it is scabrous, as accessible as it is elaborate. Simple and time-tested melody and structure are encased in the moody trappings of slow and quiet indie rock. Where this differs from someone like Acetone or Songs: OHIA, with whom Wheat often garner comparison, is in the use of and eventual utter surrender to pretty pop melodies, as well as in the balancing of the upbeat and the ponderous. Wheat shares more musically with Wilco, of late, than they do with any of the more moody and sensitive soft- or emocore practitioners. If it isn't already, "Don't I Hold You" should be in some pretty heavy rotation on most alternative rock radio stations across the country and beyond, while "Off the Pedestal" would sound right at home on a Folk Implosion album. The slow here is never too slow, the distorted and departed never too far gone. It's familiar and it's fun, the sadness that sweet kind that makes you smile as you sniffle.

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