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by Jon E. Lynch

Wray, “Hypatia”

Available: now via Communicating Vessels on cd and limited-edition vinyl

The Birmingham, Alabama, trio Wray has released its second album of dream-pop shoegaze on the Commutating Vessels label, solidifying a strong Southern music scene in an atypical approach. Southern Rock as a descriptor has tended to connote a subset of rock ’n’ roll and genre classification more aligned with The Allman Brothers Band, Lynyrd Skynyrd or, more recently, bands like The Drive-By Truckers or Lucero. Wray band members, through a shared love of bands such as NEU!, Can and My Bloody Valentine, crafted an indie rock-leaning record in a geographic region perhaps best known for its country, roots-rock and Americana. It’s cinematic, lush music that is described by the band themselves as “music for an audience, for a rock show. It’s got a beat and you can dance to it.”

“Hypatia” was engineered by Lynn Bridges (who has worked with Dan Sartain, Devendra Banhart and Jack Oblivian, among others) at Communicating Vessels Studio and many times capturing and using the first take. When asked about the lyrical approach to the record, band member David Brown said, “A lot of times my lyrical inspiration comes from documentaries or listening to science podcasts. ‘Hypatia,’ she was a fourth century scientist/ philosopher/ mathematician. Meanwhile, a lot of the lyrics I write also have romantic undertones, similar to New Wave and postpunk bands as well.”

Recommended if you’re a fan of DIIV, Alex G, The Stone Roses, Slowdive, Ride or Happyness.

— Jon E. Lynch[email protected]

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