I feel the best way to begin the review of this album is by letting the artist speak for himself. When describing his work to us, the artist had this to say, “After ditching folk music like a nasty cold Kierºn Chae Dick$on embarked on the creation of ‘Woy’- the latest project from the Melbourne moron.” It may be considered odd for me to be tickled with curiosity after reading an introduction likes this, but the music truly matches the attitude.
Woy’s album BBougainvillea is dripping with gnarly, unwavering attitude and rebellion. I will admit, this album did not necessarily win me over, BUT I can respect the aesthetic and conviction. This is not an album designed to make you feel better. This is an album designed to let you bathe in your resentments and bitterness, and that’s the best part. I would rank the lyrics above the vocals, however it would not shock me to learn that the vocal performance is intentionally sub-par. His words can get downright filthy and even lewd, I love the fearlessness in this department. Everything is murky, seedy, and covered in a glorious grime of honesty.
The music bounces around jazz and blues with a healthy dose of rock. There’s a strange mixture of tone in the songs. The opening track, which bears the name of the album, fell so flat for me, I had no idea what to expect moving forward. Then came “Living with Harmony” which features great monotone vocals and cheeky, bitter lyrics. If you want to hear some fabulous bass I suggest “The Introspective Dip” which is perhaps my favorite track. Another honorable mention is “Wohnen” which swirls in jazz and blues together to create an endearing dark brew.
The remainder of the tracks felt more like a gimmick than something I’d want to listen to again. I think certain tracks were just meant to slather on a layer of malaise and melancholy, sadly not the kind that produced a positive reaction for me. I think there’s a performance element here I just can’t see via the album. The artist described live performances and they sound like quite a site. Apparently always unrehearsed and complete with toy instruments. The artist claims to be seeking cringe worthy moments, I have to admit, I would probably buy that ticket to see such a display.
The production choices made on this album are well executed. The music has a certain rasp to it which really works given the motif. Across all instruments there’s real skill there and that skill was allowed to shine in the mixing process. Just because you’re out to make people cringe doesn’t mean you can’t do it with proper audio production.
Yes, this album is experimental, arguably off-putting and intended to put a dark cloud over your head. I was not impressed with all of it, but I can appreciate it had no intention of impressing.
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