Wild Moccasins
Look Together


3.5
great

Review

by SowingSeason STAFF
July 2nd, 2018 | 25 replies


Release Date: 2018 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Your summer rush of indie-pop has just arrived.

Wild Moccasins aren’t a household name, but that might be about to change. Look Together is technically the group’s third full-length LP, although it feels more like their debut. Signed to New West records and produced by Ben H. Allen (Animal Collective, Deerhunter, Gnarls Barkely), there is a focus this time around on perfecting the band’s pop sensibilities. Frontwoman Zahira Gutierrez belts out massive-sounding choruses left and right, while the rest of the band has Look Together sounding like Chvrches and Best Coast got together and headed out for a night of dancing. It’s one of those summer rushes, where the music doesn’t necessarily have to be complicated as long as it’s fun and upbeat. It’s got its share of clichés, sure, but only in the same way that it is tradition to put your hands way up while riding a roller coaster. It’s just too fun not to indulge a little bit.

The band makes its mission known from the start, with ‘Boyish Wave’ washing over listeners like a cool breeze; an electro-pop cure all for those endless July heatwaves. The emphasis on sleek production and electronic undertones perfectly complements Gutierrez’ vocal style, while also giving us a preview of the atmosphere in which the whole of Look Together resides. It’s really the perfect overture in that sense – even though the album becomes more inclusive of various styles/genres as it progresses. The guitar-heavy elements of Wild Moccasin’s early catalog, for example, still appear from time to time – such as on ‘Longtime Listener’, where Cody Swann (guitars/vocals) guides the album towards a nostalgic, Bryan Adams kind of aura – only more fun, like Beach Slang decided to join the party or something . Even when they aren’t the primary force driving the album’s momentum, those guitars can still be heard toiling away in the background, or even churning out a token solo – like on the back half of ‘Temporary Vase’, where Swann delivers a series of well-placed consecutive riffs.

For the most part, however, Look Together plunges into the deep end of the new wave/electronic pool, constructing an atmosphere that feels like a modernized, digitized take on glam-rock. The fusion of styles is at its absolute best on ‘No Muse’ – a song embarrassingly rich in hooks that culminates right on cue at its self-empowering chorus: “I’m no use to you unless I’m undressed / You cut me in two unless I say yes / I’m no muse to you.” It’s hands-down Gutierrez’s strongest vocal and lyrical performance, and the shimmering synths that underlay the entire experience only offer up additional assets. If anything from this record were to launch Wild Moccasins into stardom, it’s ‘No Muse’ – a track that combines everything that the band is about into a tidy four minute package.

Look Together may be more about earworm melodies and summer-vibing than realizing emotional depth or musical complexity, but that’s rarely an issue when it is done this well. The slightly larger problem is that, despite the apparent blending of new wave, indie-pop, and guitar-rock into one album, the songs still struggle to differentiate themselves from one another. It’s difficult to pinpoint why that is, but the most plausible explanation is that every track incorporates everything, to the extent that hearing one song is akin to hearing them all. This may seem like a harsh assessment, but the correction is simple: use a little more restraint, and spread the influences throughout the record’s runtime more generously so that the band’s strengths can be accented individually. After all, Wild Mocassins possess a great deal of vocal, instrumental, and creative talent…so to throw it all at the listener on every song feels like a world cup player trying to get a shot on goal every time his foot touches the ball. There’s an art to the set-up, and it’s something that could benefit Wild Mocassins on future outings.

By the end of Look Together, what you have is the kind of album that compels you to get in the car and just drive…up the coast, with windows down and the sun beating on your face. It urges you to tap your feet, or maybe even break into dance. Some might call it a guilty pleasure, but it’s actually too well-crafted to qualify as that. This is a great summer indie-pop album, and while it is not without basic shortcomings, it’s those imperfections – and the relative simplicity – that helps to make this so easy to delve into. In the meanwhile, here’s to hoping that Wild Moccasins get the attention they deserve for fashioning one of the most purely enjoyable albums of the summer.




Recent reviews by this author
Liam Singer Finish HimDirty Projectors Lamp Lit Prose
We The Kings SixFlorence and the Machine High as Hope
Let's Eat Grandma I'm All EarsOwl City Cinematic
user ratings (7)
Chart.
3
good


Comments:Add a Comment 
SowingSeason
Moderator
July 2nd 2018


26969 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

I could see a lot of people enjoying this, even if it's more fun/enjoyable than it is objectively great.

Digging: Collections Of Colonies Of Bees - HAWAII

Lucman
July 2nd 2018


590 Comments


Sounds like my kind of record. Nice review as always, Sowing, I'll give this a spin today.

Digging: Hopesfall - Arbiter

Papa Universe
July 2nd 2018


15985 Comments


"new wave/electronic pool"
you got me

"constructing an atmosphere that feels like a modernized, digitized take on glam-rock."
and you lost me

Digging: Petrojvic Blasting Company - Over the Garden Wall

SowingSeason
Moderator
July 2nd 2018


26969 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Just youtube 'No Muse' tbh...it'll tell you everything you need to know.

SowingSeason
Moderator
July 2nd 2018


26969 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Also, I could be wrong but this sounds like standard klapcore

Papa Universe
July 2nd 2018


15985 Comments


Listened to that track. Lemme tell ya, No Muse, No, Thank You.

Divaman
July 3rd 2018


2445 Comments


Yeah, I'll probably want to check this out. Thanks.

Digging: Loreena McKennitt - Lost Souls

AsleepInTheBack
July 3rd 2018


5808 Comments


1 review per day sowing smh

good read, sounds like an enjoyable listen

SowingSeason
Moderator
July 3rd 2018


26969 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

For me this was a separate day :-(

Glad to see some general interest in this. It's nothing earth shattering obviously but it's quite pleasant

ProjectFreak
July 3rd 2018


2854 Comments


"Frontwoman Zahira Gutierrez belts out massive-sounding choruses left and right"

you have my curiosity

"while the rest of the band has Look Together sounding like Chvrches and Best Coast got together and headed out for a night of dancing."

and now you have my attention

klap
Staff Reviewer
July 3rd 2018


11922 Comments


did sumone say klapcore??

Digging: Dean Forever - Dean Forever

SowingSeason
Moderator
July 3rd 2018


26969 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

But I could be wrong

klap
Staff Reviewer
July 4th 2018


11922 Comments


this is pretty good, her vocals are a bit much at times but def summer vibes. production does remind me of chrvches

SowingSeason
Moderator
July 4th 2018


26969 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

agreed 100% about the vocals

organizedsound
July 4th 2018


280 Comments


I saw these guys open up for of Montreal a few times a few years ago (on separate tours! Apparently they're a KB favorite). They put on a great show and I've had a lot of fun jamming 88 92 in the car; I'm excited to see where they went with this.

JesperL
July 5th 2018


239 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

this sounds pleasant, though I don't think I'll come back to it a lot

Djang0
July 5th 2018


154 Comments


Saw these guys open for my cousin’s band at the Milestone in North Carolina back in like 2013, they had like 100 likes on Facebook lol. Awesome to see them blow up a little more

wwf
July 5th 2018


6009 Comments


I could use more indie-pop in my life

Ebola
July 5th 2018


3143 Comments


I like some of this, but her vocals become extremely grating, especially on a few certain songs.

KevinKC
July 5th 2018


804 Comments


@Ebola. Yes. I started to listen to "No Muse" and stopped as soon as I heard the first extremely grating vocals, that is "in need of your approvaaaaaal."
I'm not saying I won't try again, it's just my first impression: teethgrating.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2017 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy