We are very honoured to premiere the new double single from one of our favourite artists, Naarm/Melbourne’s Wilding, released through the legendary Half A Cow label. Wilding – the brainchild of Justin Wilding Stokes, is the sonic architect of some very fine whimsical, intelligent pop and we have been following his career for a number of years. He is back in better form than ever, with two prime examples of radiant pop, laced with an irreverent sense of humour and a draftsman’s eye for details of the vagaries of the human condition.
‘Logical Steve’ is a terrific depiction of that character we’ve all endured at the pub. In Wilding’s words:
I’ve met many logical Steves at the pub. The guy that’s slightly pissed, invades your personal space, and then tells you all his opinions. Slightly scary at first, but you’re reluctant mates by the end of the night.
His lyrics are as always endearing and affectionate, with his ability to capture the foibles of our society:
The modern world’s falling on deaf ears
Mid-strength beers, avoids his fears
Sunglasses perched upon his head
No regrets. spaghetti alphabet
Wilding’s ultimately kind treatment of this character is delivered in his whip smart angular pop carriage – melodic and robust with sharp, punchy guitars, jaunty synths skipping in the ether and a percussive thump. Wilding’s delivery has a Blur/Jona Lewie edge – wry, observant and louche.
‘Difficult Day’ travels a slightly different path with its depiction of – well, what it says on the label:
I’m having trouble now I’m alone
I banged my head on the toilet bowl
I’m late for the train, my coffee is weak
l can’t seem to break this losing streak
I’m having a difficult day, a difficult day
The track trots along at a high-stepping pace with a fairground whirligig spin that tumbles out of the speakers. Wilding’s fey musings are filled with a self-deprecatory style – in his own words,
‘Difficult Day’ is a self-depreciating whinge about minor frustrations. But all said, my life is
pretty great, so I have to keep checking myself that I don’t sweat the small stuff.
Both tracks are further evidence of Wilding’s prodigious talent.
The singles are available through the link above and via all the usual download and streaming sites tomorrow.
The single artwork is an homage to The Wedding Present’s remarkable 1987 album ‘George
Best’. With a twist. With a wry nod to the lyrics of ‘Logical Steve’, the photo of George Best is
replaced by another iconic British footballer – Kenny Dalglish of Liverpool FC. Wilding says:
As a lifelong Liverpool fan, I thought it only right that ‘King’ Kenny Dalglish should have his
moment on a record sleeve. Plus, it will annoy my Manchester United supporting friends.
Being similarly afflicted, I wholeheartedly endorse this message.
Feature Photograph: Lee Hooper