The Smith Street Band
South East Facing Wall


4.5
superb

Review

by NeoSpaz USER (32 Reviews)
March 28th, 2013 | 20 replies | 2,100 views


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: It's a dark night, and you'll need a few drinks to get you through to the morning.

4 of 4 thought this review was well written

And if I'm fighting with anyone Jess, I'm glad that it's you
Because you sing my songs with more passion than I do


South East Facing Wall is an EP released by The Smith Street Band in late January, 2011. A raw, painfully personal record, helped even more by the low quality recording and strained vocals of Wil Wagner. Be it through the various crescendos, drunken reminiscing or ridiculous natures of some of the songs found here, this record contains a short, sharp, pleasing experience.

The Smith Street Band is a very strange case, in terms of both sound, and lyrical content. Whether it comes from Wil Wagner's anecdotes on scaring individuals on public transport, or reminiscing of inducing sleeping pills, most of the lyrical passages here give off the feeling of being genuine, not written for the general public, not written for the fangirls, not written because of the impending threat from the label. What you get is an outpouring of Wil's thoughts and feelings on his life and the things that it revolves around. This leaves the listener imagining a late night out, alone, watching the light from the ashtray fade and the cool breeze bringing a sobering chill, a scenario that is actually described from a variety of perspectives on the four songs.

I hope I scare people on public transport, no shoes, my eyes rolling back into my head

As far as the music is concerned, it is a top notch level. The drumming is appropriate, succinct and dynamic. Building from simple rock beats, to excellent use of cymbals, without inflecting too heavily on the music or taking away from the melodic, mellow feel that is required so desperately here. This is best demonstrated with the build up in My New Dress Up Shoes where the crescendo from 3:00 onwards demonstrates the building power of the drums to the point where it overbears the vocals, adding a fantastic level to the composition. The elegant fills, whilst simplistic add another level to the canvas, another dimension to the depressed melody.

And in your mother's hatchback with the windows rolled down, my dear, you were a ***ing joy to be around,

Arriving at the guitars; the worn thing chords, the boosted, not distorted tones.The guitars stay very true to the overall theme and movement of the album, in a way that mirrors the drums, keeping very simple yet more emotional then fast, out of control solos, or complex riffs and interludes. The melodies make up for the lack of technical skill, yet do so without feeling worn or tired, repeated or generic. They have energy when it is required (I Hope I Scare People On Public Transport), or a sadness to lean back on (My New Dress Up Shoes). Like most of the music found here, the dynamic value of the guitars, bass and else, contribute a sense of perfection to the record. There is loudness, there is quietness, both of which have an audible difference. Unlike so much of the modern marketed music, what you are left with here is a defined sound, without being pretentious or over the top.

If you drive me home,
I would've sat with you by the fire until my eyes closed


As this review comes to a close and my eyes begin to to tire, it occurs to me that this record has the ability to be played again, again, and yet again without sounding to tired. It may be the appeal of a record that sounds so true to my home in Australia, or my dreams of wandering. What is fact is that this EP shows the development of The Smith Street Band's distinct sound and style.

Where I sit and I watch the heavy rain fall,
Yeah I sit and I watch Smith Street drown


4.6/5



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user ratings (32)
Chart.
4.2
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
NeoSpaz
March 28th 2013



4518 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i am so fucking tired now, but i think this was well worth it

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
March 28th 2013



16083 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

nice!

NeoSpaz
March 28th 2013



4518 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

thought this needed a review because the two LPs had reviews, decided to give this some love

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
March 28th 2013



19674 Comments


Excellent review I haven't heard this one pos

blastOFFitsPARTYtime
March 28th 2013



1477 Comments


Sweet, dude. Pos'd.

deandeg
March 28th 2013



13 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

amazing ep, my favorite album of TSSB discography.

NeoSpaz
March 28th 2013



4518 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Thanks guys

Atari, you should definitely get around it, it is sweet

Kman418
March 28th 2013



10256 Comments


this is a fun band but the amount of 5s this and no one gets lost anymore have is fucking insane jesus christ

Digging: OutKast - Aquemini

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
March 28th 2013



19674 Comments


I will man I love the smith street band and wil Wagner. By the way you've been mad consistent lately keep up the good work

nononsense
March 28th 2013



3365 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Good stuff

Digging: Invent, Animate - Everchanger

NeoSpaz
March 28th 2013



4518 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

It has that many 5's Kman because it is really, really good

Cheers Atari, I've been writing a lot in my spare time.

Kman418
March 28th 2013



10256 Comments


i dunno no one gets lost anymore was only like a 3.5 for me so i'm skeptical

maybe i just need more listens

NeoSpaz
March 28th 2013



4518 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

you aren't listening with your SOOOOOOOOUL

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
March 28th 2013



19674 Comments


Higher than a 3.5 based on the lyrics alone.

NeoSpaz
March 28th 2013



4518 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Lyrics on all the albums are fantastic, but fuck, the ones on here are just gr9

NightProwler
January 15th 2014



6337 Comments


Only release by this band I still need to check out. Seeing as every other thing they have put out is just ace at the least, and the lyrics never disappoint, I don't see ow this could go wrong. This is quickly becoming some of the best music around atm, IMO

Kris.
January 15th 2014



12308 Comments


yeah, I've still not heard this yet and TSSB is one of my favorite bands around so I dunno why

NeoSpaz
April 22nd 2014



4518 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

this is up there with their best so it should be something that you hit up

InfamousGrouse
April 22nd 2014



3377 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

same

NeoSpaz
April 22nd 2014



4518 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

holla



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