Review – Winter Wheat

screen-shot-2016-11-03-at-6-43-00-pmJohn K Samson

Winter Wheat

(Anti)

A

 

Nicholas Friesen @Nicholastronaut November 4, 2016

The second proper solo full length from one of the best living songwriters is a slow burner, one that delivers the poetry you need without ever launching into high gear. The normal JKS/Weakerthans formula is to mix some loud in with the quiet, but changing up the formula is good, and opener “Select All Delete” is the perfect way to set the tone for what is to come, with its ghostly ooh oohs, piano tinkles and dreamy blips. The riffs, while mellow, do come at you via “Postdoc Blues” and “Oldest Oak at Brookside” – acoustic rockers about Winnipeg’s love of nostalgia and getting shit done in your gitch. Waiting for the moments where you hear the brushes on the drums and the slide of fingers against acoustic strings are practically ritualistic at this point with new works from Samson, and they gleefully appear to this fan’s delight. Then there’s the lyrics… the lyrics. Well, you’ll just listen and get from those what you will, I cannot critique these words, I’m not nearly qualified. I just want them to be what they are, even when John “kills off” Virtute the cat (don’t worry, it’s beautiful and quick).