Music Review: Post-punk legends Wire sound ferocious, rejuvenated on new album

Like fellow post-punk innovators Gary Numan and Gang Of Four, Wire greatly dislikes mining the dusty corners of its back catalog for inspiration. However, for 2013’s Change Becomes Us, the legendary U.K. act unearthed and bulked up a series of musical ideas it performed live circa 1979-1980. The results of this rare backward look were ferocious and defiant: hollowed-out confrontations full of tart rhythms, noisy punk snarls, and placid psychedelia glazed by icy keyboards. Those similar textures and that bristling energy linger on Wire, the quartet’s 14th studio album. Concise songs such as “Joust & Jostle” and “High” boast thrumming motorik grooves, robotic-tinged vocals, and cloudy guitar textures, while the biting, New Order-esque “Split Your Ends” and synth-buzzed “Blogging” are urgent grayscale pop.

Thematically, the latter song is Wire‘s most interesting detour, a conflation of biblical and digital references (e.g., “Blogging like Jesus / Tweet like …

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