Published Jul 30, 2020After more than a decade of music making and plumbing the depths of sound as Wye Oak, multi-instrumentalists Jenn Wasner and Andy Stack have turned a corner with their new No Horizon EP. With an incredibly quick turnaround, the album was composed between the end of 2018 and early 2019 and subsequently performed at New York's Merkin Hall as part of Ecstatic Music Festival, in collaboration with the Brooklyn Youth Chorus (the two having collaborated in the past). The result is an album that strays far from Wye Oak's catalogue and studio work, while still being unequivocally rooted in the band's definite experimental format.
Of the five tracks, "No Place" stands out, its use of minor chord progressions pulsing with a beautifully melancholic, ominous tone. Rather than call and response, the gossamer vocals of the Brooklyn Youth Chorus are followed by a monotone vocal mirroring of what's been sung, a twinning with Wasner's weighty words. No Horizon pairs ecstasy with pensiveness, using experimentation, static, tension and texture to push Wye Oak's skills ever forward. (Merge)