wellthen – ‘The demo EP’

Chicago-based act wellthen preview their upcoming full-length with The demo EP, representing the project’s first release as a duo — following two albums as a quartet. Aurelio Damiani and Christian Fields craft a sturdy, melodic rock sound throughout, alongside introspective lyrics that explore the human experience and its myriad of emotions. wellthen will be entering the studio for the upcoming full-length, and this EP does excellently in providing enjoyable anticipation, with a range of quality songwriting and production.

“this time” kicks off with a twangy immediacy. Sporadic guitars and steady percussive energy complement a heartfelt vocal lead, which exudes a dreamy wordlessness as the one-minute turn approaches and jangly guitars immerse. The track’s dynamic tonal direction, from quaint jangling to erupting distortion, is an apt commencement for the EP in demonstrating wellthen’s hooky, evolving rock arsenal.

The subsequent “the way it goes” builds with a more serene contemplation initially; apprehensions of an impending future pair with aspirations of change, lyrically, as calming guitar pulses intensify into the warming distortion. The title-referencing vocal refrain enthralls thereafter. The effort marks another success in climactic rock songcraft, also evident on “most days,” which escalates from lush jangle-pop intrigue into waves of distorted passion; it makes for a satiating send-off to a compelling EP from wellthen, whose upcoming full-length we’re certainly anticipating.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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