Wet : Letter Blue

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Wet Letter Blue review

As temperatures drop, crockpots come out of the cupboard and sweaters reemerge from the closet, the familiarity of fall returns, bringing with it a sense of change. Each new season conjures up its own emotions, and the need for readjustment is different with each month. This feeling of finding your comfort rings out on Wet’s latest record, Letter Blue. Through each track, the band weaves together a comfort food collection, songs of reassurance and capability, ballads that heal from the inside out. 

In a press release regarding the album, singer-songwriter Kelly Zutrau explained, “ “I’m always interested in multiple feelings at once… Not just a happy song, but happy and sad and guilty—those can all be true.” This in between, uncertain emotion fuels Wet’s best work, like on their previous album, Still Run, which finds album closer “Love is Not Enough” striking the most cathartic chord. When Zutrau and bandmates Marty Sulkow (guitar) and Joe Valle (production) come together and create, the result is a delicate, heartbreaking, joyful chorus. Wet creates songs with many dimensions, invoking a vast spectrum of feelings.

Letter Blue finds Wet collaborating with artists that only strengthen their work, like Toro Y Moi’s Chaz Bear, and Blood Orange, the latter featured on the track “Bound.” Zutrau added, “”We were circling back to the beginning… when it was fun and intuitive and friends working on music, and how sweet that was.” The result is a mellow, hazy ’80s influenced track, similar to the sophisti-pop sheen of The Blue Nile and Patrice Rushen. And while “Bound” feels like the album’s sleekest track, album closer “Larabar” is its most experimental. With a textural aesthetic like that of a demo from Bon Iver’s 22, A Million, the track is jagged and raw, a bold new sound for the group. 

Wet has a knack for tugging at the heartstrings, whether through Zutrau’s soothing, warm vocals, or picking just the right chord at the piano that will leave trails of nostalgia in its wake. Their music has been consistently open and raw, never holding back whatever the band is experiencing. It’s a beautiful approach to creating, to hear complicated emotions painted into a listenable ballad.

Label: AWAL

Year: 2021

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