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Review: Andew WK – Close Calls With Brick Walls by Jayson

I feel this review is a bit late coming. It took a long time for me to get the CD in the mail. I am going to pretend it was having a grand adventure before coming home to me.

It’s funny that there’s a new Andrew WK album 9 years after he first showed up. Funny because since then, I finished school, moved 4 times, had maybe 9 different jobs and went back to school. Even The Wolf was seven years ago, still a long time. Long enough for your whole life to change.

Back in the day, I remember Andrew’s music being a thing of controversy. Like… he was something you weren’t supposed to like or if you did, something that had to be filtered through the lens of irony beforehand. I remember the word ‘dumb’ being used a lot. There are fundamental questions there: Why do we value negativity more than positivity in music? Why is negativity art and positivity stupid? Happiness is considered insipid, sadness is a measure of depth. I remember some philosopher that had this thing about how a smart guy’s sadness was of a greater value than a dumb guy’s happiness. I’m at the point now where I’m more impressed with Andrew WK because he’s gone ahead and created something from positive place, and it rocks. Which brings us to Close Calls With Brick Walls.

There has been a lot of artistic progression since The Wolf, but man, this is real, this is not a euphemism or a back handed compliment. Andrew WK has shown himself to be one of the few musicians out there that can evolve a sound without compromising what we liked about it in the first place. This album is less metal than the other two, more experimental. The experimental moments on here compare favorably to David Bowie and The Rolling Stones back in their respective heydays. Again, I am not foolin’. Close Calls still has that anthemic Andrew WK sound though. It’s not like the party has stopped for the sake of artistic pretense, it’s more like now this other stuff showed up and the party is more interesting.

– Jayson

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