Waters - Out in the Light (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


Out in the Light (2011)

TBD Records

Hey there kiddies. Do you like your indie rock to be thoroughly fuzzy and warm, like a big ol' teddy bear with glasses and a shaky grasp on irony? Then perhaps you should gorge yourselves stupid on Waters' latest record, Out in the Light. There's some of Pixies' noise (minus the anger). Arcade Fire's vocals (minus the orchestral maneuvers and concept albums). Nada Surf's easygoing nature (I have nothing to add here, but I thought I should keep the parenthetical statements going (No seriously)). Out in the Light's ambitions might be more modest, but it's still a solid record that should tickle some ear holes.

Opener "For the One" is a nice little dissonant number. It's fierce and the chorus feels epic yet shrouded in haze. Dig that low end. However, track two, "O Holy Break of Day," is more representative of the album overall. Waters love midtempo tracks. In fact, the second half of the album kind of blurs together because all the drum tracks are so dang slow. But let's focus on that bangin' first half. "Holy Break" is pretty OK. The title track builds some nice moodiness. "Back to You" pumps up the noisiness again, thankfully, and even packs a killer hook.

While the album is able to crank out some pleasing quiet pop tunes ("Ones You Had Before" is mighty fine), the record is generally at its best when it's loud and raw. Still, though, Out in the Light is Waters' first record. It's also a stylistic departure for frontman Van Pierszalowski, who used to make his living with Port O'Brien. The guy hopefully has even better things in store for LP #2.