WRIT ON WATER
2008 Cyrus Shade Recordings
Review by: Matt Crosslin
This single disc is a collection of two EPs combined on to one disc. Both EPs contain some songs that were considered for A Wingless King, but didn’t quite fit. For lack of a better description, songs were grouped in to an “electric” EP and an “acoustic” EP – even though those are just general ideas and not strict rules.
Left over EPs are strange beasts. Usually, when a band says that songs were “considered for our album, but didn’t quite fit,” what they really mean is “these songs aren’t that good, but we spent money on them, so now we want our fans to help us recover those funds.” Not so with these songs.
Ancestral Echo starts off the disc with a nice groove that lets you know right away why these songs deserved to see the light of the day. The intro groove of “This Kingdom of Tin” gives way in to a spoken word styled vocal delivery that works nice. Then the background chanting kicks in. This song builds and builds, layer upon layer of sound.
Ever wondered where that little intro sound bite on their website comes from? The answer lies on this CD. The rest of the EP gives you what you have come to expect from Writ on Water. Then 12 seconds of… somebody opening something… and then the next EP.
The second half is Wunderzeit! – an EP of acoustic flavored songs and two remixes. “Wondertime” actual appears twice on this part of the CD – once as a remix and once as an acoustic demo. Both versions are very different from the one you originally heard on A Wingless King, so don’t start thinking “filler.” The acoustic demo really does fit in with the other acoustic-styled songs on the EP. The remixes are electronic-flavored, but placed as book ends on the acoustic songs. The stand out cut on the Wunderzeit! EP is hard to pick, but I would go for “Santa Cruz,” a rollicking instrumental that is almost over too soon.
On further listens, the remixes are very well executed (I need to check out this Travelogue outfit), but still a tad bit out of place. That’s not a big deal to me, but Writ fans that aren’t in to techno might scratch their heads a bit. Overall, another quality entry in to the Writ on Water catalogue.