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The sound harkens back to "Pink Flag" in that it is full of energy and full of insistent guitar buzz. This is a harsher sound, though. My first response to the album was "blimey, they should have more dynamics in the songs - maybe start with one distorted guitar for a minute before moving on to two". But, it hit me more correctly later. It's a mood. It's a cold, hard, angry mood.
Albums like "Manscape", while not entirely successful, hinted at what Wire can reflect - a harsh portrait of a world that has become a heartless system, where human emotion is something to be studied and manipulated rather than mythologized. Well, we're very much in that world. We're in a world dominated by a nation seemingly run by a shadow government, whose leaders tell demonstrably false lies to a population almost desperate to believe in myth. The aggression in this music, combined with the usual harsh bleak landscape, seems to me to perfectly mirror our times.
In short, it's effective art. Harsh, minimal art. If you've been a fan of Wire at any point, you should give this a spin or three.
If like me you had your doubts about Wire being relevant or exciting, but are open to yet another version--I say get over those doubts, buy it, and enjoy. Because these guys are NOT dead yet!!!
The stongest tracks are culled from Read & Burn 1. On this release, Wire dramatically reconfigured the minimalist-punk blueprint they created with Pink Flag (1977), adding a huge dose of amphetamines in the form intense distortion, with just a hint of industrial influence. For a group in the third decade of their career (with most members well into their 50s), R & B 1 was remarkably vital relevant (though with all it's noisy intensity, it did take awhile for it to sink in with me).
On Read & Burn 2, Wire started to fall into a familiar pattern: After Pink Flag, Wire became progressively more difficult and deliberately arty, and made less accessible music (esp in the late 80s and early 90s). Read & Burn 2 follows a similar blueprint to it's prodecessor, but Wire employ greater use of studio effects, and the songs are more measured (much like Chairs Missing and 154). While this does does give R&B 2 more texture, it also saps much of the spontaneity, humor and accessibilty that made R&B 1 so much fun.
Unsurpringly, the best material on Send is from R&B 1. "In the Art of Stopping" and "Comet" are taut, catchy, songs driven by Gilbert's menacing guitar, Lewis & Gotobed's propulsive foundation, all put home with Newman's sardonic, funny vocals (it's refreshing that Wire have rediscovred a sense of humor). Unfortunately, only three songs here are from R&B 1, and the remaining material becomes a little tedious, and just kind of blends together (though "99.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
if your a fan this is a more agressive overdriven album . great stuff ?Published 9 months ago by tracy harrison
It's easy to hear music out of context these days. We can hear something no wave or post-punk from the late seventies or early eighties and think to ourselves "gosh, weren't they... Read morePublished on September 9, 2009 by J. GARRATT
The four tracks that do not appear on Read And Burn EPs (Mr. Marx's Table, Being Watched, You Can't Leave Now, and Half Eaten) are all excellent; they take the aggression of Read... Read morePublished on July 31, 2008 by Said Head
I've just played the Read & Burns EP's and compared with them, I like this album 'Send' better.
Good structures and good production. Read more
Wire have managed this again. They are back for a third time and it is even better than the second come-back.Published on March 10, 2006 by Lovblad
I've been very into the whole late 70's punk/new wave thing ever since i lived through it living in the northeast and going to many concerts and also collect alot of other types of... Read morePublished on February 2, 2006 by David B. Wallace
I was a died in the wool fan - even liking the 80's stuff (until IBTABA) and all the Newman solo albums. Read morePublished on December 13, 2005 by GrimRicho
Back in the late 70's, Wire released a trio of albums of intense, arty post-punk albums, and amazingly, every one of them is essential listening for fans of the genre, or really... Read morePublished on June 22, 2005 by Scott Bresinger
Wire is a band that was big between 1977 and 1981, essentially founding the sub-genre of post-punk and inventing an oft-imitated style of short, fast, sharp musical numbers that... Read morePublished on June 19, 2005 by G. Laur