sneeze - wilt
Release Date: June 17, 2014
Record Label: Glory Kid
Wilt, the sophomore album by Allston, Massachusetts, band sneeze, is the latest in the line of albums that harkens back to 90s grunge. It’s a thirty-three minute haze of distortion and gruff choruses. What helps sneeze to stand out amongst their peers is their immediate accessibility. Bands like Balance and Composure, Citizen, and Title Fight sometimes reach levels of intensity and harshness that sneeze’d never imagine indulging. Instead they pen songs that’ll get stuck in your head, like “squid and the witch,” “guilted sex” and “the shit trail drips.” None of the songs are catchy enough to be considered pop, though. They all reside firmly in the grunge genre.
This turns out to be the album’s largest drawback. All the songs on wilt are fuzzy, slightly uptempo tracks, and almost all of them fade directly into the next song without any silence between. This makes it pretty difficult to discern when one track ends and the next begins. It’s expected, I guess, given the nature of the album, but there are ways of making each song stand out individually (see: Colourmeinkindness). There are moments that stand out, like the break two minutes and twelve seconds into “the naked slug,” when the band tones down the fuzz and goes into a Goo Goo Dolls esque interlude. It’s one of the few moments of notable deviation in the record, and it makes the song all the more memorable for it. Clearly, sneeze is comfortable inside their grunge box, and they’re good at that. Now all that’s left is to get them outside, otherwise they’ll get left behind in favor of similar bands who can stand out.
It's like somebody did a caricature of 90's grunge stereotypes and made an album out of it. I hope you were wearing flannel while you were listening to this, Zac. That album art is throwing me off, but I still feel slightly inclined to give this a listen.