Day Seventeen: “Clouded” – This Wild Life

I’ll be honest. I originally had no intention of including this release in my thirty-day challenge. As much as I do enjoy this album, it’s not one I’m heavily influenced by or even listening to regularly. But I decided to include them because more people should know about them and because there are still things to be learned here.

Immediate observation: we have another ten-song album. It would seem brevity is a virtue. But more importantly, this album teaches me about the power of a second guitar. Part of what I admired about The Plastic Arts’ Academy Clonez was its minimalism: it’s literally Kyle Terrizzi and his guitar and the songs were able to stand. But This Wild Life shows what you can do when you add even just another acoustic to the mix: the song comes alive with personality.

Though only an acoustic duo (a tattooed, pierced, and bearded acoustic duo, mind you), This Wild Life is not afraid to play with layers. There’re strings, light percussion, and even background vocals that makes them sound bigger than they are. More than an album, Clouded becomes a score for your broken heart. Kevin Jordan’s soft and smooth voice, which is confusing given his appearance, makes the vulnerability of the music that much more beautiful.

As gentle as the music is, these guys aren’t afraid to drop some swear words every now and then to tell it like it is. But it’s that very thing that makes this album so amazing. It’s honest and witty. No matter how many times I hear “No More Bad Days” I have to pause and admire of the brilliance of the opening line. “I thought we hit rock bottom and then the floor gave out.” Seriously? That’s great.

This album, like many others mentioned prior, make me wonder what I’ll write about in the future. I’m a married Jesus follower living in a beautiful country. It’s pretty hard to find things to complain about. But I guess I’ll figure that as I go along.

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