World Waits is in a completely different territory than anything SDRE ever recorded. It consists of mostly slower songs featuring vocals softer than one would expect of Mr. Enigk. He plays guitar (acoustic) on most tracks and uses an assortment of backing rhythm section. The production is quite stellar, with his voice always taking center stage. The occasional organ/piano flourishes blend well with the rest of the music. Highlights include the second track 'Been Here Before' and the second last track 'Dare A Smile', which is a bit more somber than the other tracks.
While it wasn't the whole world waiting patiently for Jeremy Enigk's follow-up to his 1996 solo debut Return of the Frog Queen, a healthy fraction has followed the Seattle artist's work since Sunny Day Real Estate and through the Fire Theft. And most will find the wait for this one well worth it. Enigk's voice is close to perfection, blanketed by resonating melodies and bold arrangements, and although his lyrics can be difficult to decode, they flutter beneath the swirling guitars and calming keyboards in a near fragile state. "I cannot change any man's hate/But I can make known forgiving waters have flown," Enigk pleads in the self-forgiveness song "River to Sea," which rivals the immensely personal "Dare a Smile" and spooky "Damien Dreams" as the album's best tracks. The latter is one of several on World Waits written nearly a decade ago, some intended for another Fire Theft record. That, apparently, remains on the back burner, while Jeremy Enigk's solo career is out front. --Scott Holter
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World Waits takes a page from the work he's done on The Fire Theft debut record and instead of stripping down that sound he's actually built upon it. So much so that with just the opening track you can tell that this is record is far more dramatic and is bigger is so many brilliant ways. The lyrics are alot more subtle just in case you didn't appreciate the straight forward nature of his writing with TFT.
The music lingers and yet wastes no time taking the listner where he needs to go. Not a single sign of pretentious or self importance to be found instead it holds the essence of a musician who is specific, refined, and professional. He knows what he wants and he gets it out there efficiently and without hesitation. The record is only as long as it needs to be and it will leave you satisfied and yet wanting more. Jeremys voice is still the star of the show and it was nice to see him tone it down a bit after reaching some rather high octaves on the fire theft record he has brought his range back down when necessary giving quite a few songs that great mellow feel before rushing into the epic finish.
Not to say that its a perfect record but it does what it does well and how many records do that in this day and age?
The intro track is simply amazing, and gets your attention right away. It is followed by Been Here Before, which is in many ways the follow up to Heaven form the Fire Theft album. It was ment to be that way, I read somewhere. Its a great track. The album jsut continues for flow strong. City At Night sounds like it might have fit well on SDRE's The Rising Tide. Some old classics appear on this as well, ones that had only been offered to us in the live bootlegs we collect like the addicts that we are.
This album will open your eyes, buy it.
I just saw him last month at The Troubadour in Hollywood and he performs as well live as on his recordings!!! I am just a fan of any music that comes from the heart and Jeremy Enigk is one of my select few musicians with his heart in his music, if you are a fan of music with a soul, buy this album, you won't be disappointed!
The only reason this album gets a 4 out of 5 is because my usual taste is for music of the more avant-garde, art-rock, jazz bent but, Jeremy Enigk does have a touch of the avant-garde in his song structure with his orchestral breaks in his work on this album and more so on his previous solo effort The Return of The Frog Queen. Listen to the samples provided and see if you are as intrigued as I am with his music and if you like what you hear, I would also recommend his previous album...