The Icarus Line: Wildlife
The Icarus Line is a band I’ve always found to be shamefully overlooked. I can’t think of anyone else out there that’s offered such a consistently sleazy amalgamation of post-punk, noise rock, and blues. It’s true they’ve earned more of a reputation for their problems and their offstage antics. One problem they can’t seem to shake is an inability to hold onto band members. Wildlife features two new guitarists, Jason DeCorse and James Striff. The interplay between these two are what give most of these songs their style. One successful formula they utilize to great effect is having one guitar, oftentimes clean, playing some riff or rhythm while the other makes a whole lot of godforsaken noise. In addition, there’s a generous amount of acoustic guitar and piano throughout the album, which explore territories for which The Icarus Line aren’t commonly known. Their experimentation, it seems, has lead them back to early rock and roll influences. “Soul Slave” and “All the Little Things” could be mistaken for some of the new bonus material from the Some Girls remaster if not for the extra layers of darkness and abrasion. The guitar on “Soul Slave” sounds just like if Keith Richards got back on the old drugs (and maybe even some new ones). If “No Lord” sounds somewhat familiar in a way you can’t quite put your finger on, it’s because they are using the infamous “Bo Diddley” beat, stripping the song to its primitive roots.
I find this band endlessly exciting. Every time I’ve listened to this album lately, and it’s been many times, one of their song titles sticks in my head. We Want More.