The first thing you’ll probably notice about In The Wild is the cover art, which isn’t too dissimilar from the box art to season one of meth enthusiast TV show Breaking Bad, bitch. Once you get a substantial distance into the record though there becomes a more apparent reason for that. This 17 track collection could have sound-tracked Breaking Bad’s numerous desert scenes. There is often acres of empty space throughout ‘In The Wild’ but bubbling under the surface is always a foreboding undertone of unknowing and caution and it’s these subtleties that make the album such a journey.
17 tracks may sound like a big ask but a small number of these are one to two minute interludes that meander along, chiming and chirping their way across the 55 minute run-time, buffering the edges on what could have otherwise been quite a raw listen.
It can still be a discomforting affair in places however as ‘Do Me’ progresses into a heavy and rumbly monster, but by the half way mark the repetitive vocal line of the title could well have driven you to a state of mild un-ease. Elsewhere ‘Dos Gardenias’ sits halfway between a sitar Spaghetti Western and a Tron warehouse rave, ‘Heart & Soul’ is a cute showcase of skittering percussion and ‘Grief’ has an uplifting piano that completely contradicts the song’s title. There’s a lot on display here to showcase Drew Lustman’s influences and talents.
‘In The Wild’ is anything but predictable, part Bass, parts Jazz, parts House. But what’s most refreshing is this is something has obviously been constructed as an album, one solid body of work and while that may not benefit those listening on their iPhone on shuffle it makes buying the vinyl an almost essential. And everybody knows that buying vinyl is like going to the gym, you absolutely have to tell everyone that you bought the vinyl.
In The Wild is out now on Ninja Tune.