by Nathan Cardiff

As a preview for their forthcoming full-length (titled Wend To Why), The Wandering Lake has released a four track EP to accompany them on their Midwest winter tour. The soft vocals have just a hint of warbled delivery; a perfect level of shakiness to balance out the strong lyrics. The songs sting like the grim gray Winter; something about even the name Wandering Lake seems to embody the harsh season. Over four songs, Brian Kupillas embraces the cold. His voice like frost on the window and we all must observe it while it lasts. “My whole little instant has so quickly disappeared” he sings on “It’s You!” conveying the fleetingness of it all (the season, life, etc.). The steady strum of “Mono No Aware” sounds like the slow-dance you’ve been waiting for all night. Come in from the cold and let a warm hand take yours.

Sparse guitar and minimal drums on “Lily Pad” bring us back into the cold landscape. The tension builds and builds with a soft crescendo and then politely fades. The quiet repetition of “Memphis” serves as a solemn send-off (“Goodbye, goodbye, all eyes were blind for you”).

Just because the EP so perfectly sums up the coldest of winter months doesn’t mean The Wandering Lake is harsh itself; there is a wholeheartedness and grace in all the songs that can protect you from the cruelty the season offers. The Wandering Lake is that hint of warmth in the middle of the day. The small hope of better times. And we hold onto it for as long as possible.

Favorite Tracks: “Mono No Aware” & “Memphis”

by Nathan Cardiff

Editor’s note: Wandering Lake will play the Replay on Thursday, February 5th.