July 6, 2016
Premierage/Previewage: Wheat Heralds Sixth Set With "Hey Eugenio," Gigs With Eldridge Rodriguez Saturday
[Photo: Paul Chiera / remixed by Clicky Clicky] The rituals of summer are nice, but it is bittersweet seeing them come and go after looking forward to them for so long (said the guy who just got back from an annual beach jaunt -- Ed.). And maybe this is how fans of area indie rock veterans Wheat feel: without delving into any hard analysis, drummer Brendan Harney agrees with our observation, that it seems like the band -- makers of shoulda-been hits including 1999's "No One Ever Told Me" or the even older, heart-punching ballad "Soft Polluted Blacks" -- typically plays shows in the summer and then largely uses the cooler months to hole up and write songs, or play Sudoku, or do whatever it is rock luminaries do. Summer inevitably fades, and only the promise that another one's coming makes that kinda OK. So, yeah, Wheat is playing a show this Saturday in Cambridge, Mass. (more on that below), but what can they offer as a salve once the show is but a memory?
Cheer up, Francis: it just so happens the act is closing in on the completion of Blazed, the sixth full-length of a 20-year career during which it has made records with Small Factory's Dave Auchenbach and renowned knob-twiddler and Mercury Rev guy Dave Fridmann and perhaps even another Dave, who knows? The forthcoming set has been under construction for about a year, and Mr. Harney reports the band is "getting into the final stages of getting the vocals down right, and making sure everything is nip and tuck." A final track listing won't be set until the songs are all complete, but two tunes destined for the forthcoming collection are already in the wild. What's more, we're pleased to premiere for you today a third that is said to have made the proverbial cut, namely the little pop wonder "Hey Eugenio," which you can stream via the topmost Soundcloud embed below.
To recap the recent moves, the band released the subdued bouncer "Walking Song" to fans back in February, and followed it up with "Stay Up Late" in May. Newcomer "Hey Eugenio" is a charming and detailed miniature, a simple love song, according to Harney. The deconstructed number's lyrics pour out like sweet and thick syrup among playful electric piano, tastefully understated guitar licks, canned percussion and a rising firmament of synth. Will the band play it and/or other new tunes at the aforementioned rock show? Oh yeah, about that: pay attention. It's this Saturday at the fabled Middle East Rock Club, and it is an early show, with doors at 7 and Wheat performing at 9. So don't show up at the usual time and be caught flat-footed, unrocked and likely mocked. Hitmakers Eldridge Rodriguez will open the show with a full-band set, and we strongly suggest arriving in time to see that foursome turn in what is typically a fiery performance. Perhaps Cam's fabled white suit will even make an appearance? We make no promises. Either way you should get yourself a ticket right now, arrange an Uber, weed your garden, trump your towers, whatever it takes to ensure that you will be at the rock show. Rock show.
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