Luke deWilde is a twenty-year old emcee/producer under the moniker “The Wilde” who makes self-described “alternative hip-hop” on his recent album entitled Urban Alien Nation. The album is full of eclectic sounds produced from organic instruments such as guitars as well as electronic synth and drum sets to create a musically rich album. DeWilde wisely enlists a number of guests such as Scarub of Living Legends and Milo of Hellfyre Club to bring some variety along with his own skills. DeWIlde sounds undeniably young throughout the record but that hardly holds him back from making well-crafted lyrics with more than impressive production and even more impressive hooks.
The album begins with “Name ≠ Ego,” which combines reverb laced distant sounding guitars with electronic hip-hop drums during the verse. DeWilde has clever self-deprecating lyrics such as: “Waking up and hoping that you noticed me and tweeted / While you lay awake last night and couldn't fall asleep / Now I'm busking on the city streets and trusting there's a plan for me.” The verse is solid but the chorus is extremely infectious and filled with great tones and sound as he sings, “Every single day is the same, never changes / One step closer or I waste away.”
It’s evident on “Leaving The Living Dead” that deWilde also could start an avant-garde indie pop act. The best part of the song is when he sings that infectious hook. “Off the Map (feat. Natalie Sullivan)” takes Sleigh Bells-inspired drums and combines them with bending guitar strings making a lush atmosphere for him to spit rhymes off us. The hook may be the best on the album. It sounds like it’s straight out of a California pop song and Sullivan’s voice works nicely in the mix.
The production gets pretty sick on the title track “Urban Alien Nation.” He cuts up the beats while a foghorn type synth permeates the sound field. The song dances around topics young people have been talking about for decades such as intolerance and general in-compliance with the bourgeoisie life style.
Luke deWilde made an album that is a “grower.” It has some good production and you won't want to miss the hooks. Sure some of the topics he skirts around may seem a bit sophomoric but I doubt you were writing songs this good at twenty years old.
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