When I came across Ian Cohen’s post for Pitchfork’s 15th anniversary feature and his selection of the Wrens‘ “Everyone Choose Sides” as the song that meant most to him personally in 2003, it dawned upon me how many years it’s been since I’d listened to that Meadowlands album I loved so much. “Everyone Choose Sides” was my favorite track not just of the album, but probably of anything I heard that year, and I’m quite sure it’s there on that year-end mix cd I compiled with Brian. If only I could find that disc now. It captured everything I loved about American indie rock, precisely at a time when the confessional core of emo wasn’t yet embarrassing (to me at least). Listening to the track again in 2011, I’m shocked at how utterly immediate it still sounds – its impeccable sense of timing and devastating pace bracketed by blatantly blown out guitars and an audaciously abrupt ending. It was defining of its time, and in a silent way it’s patiently grown old(er) with me. – Dan.
The Wrens don’t release albums very often. Meadowlands (2003) was released on Absolutely Kosher, and we hear a follow-up should be due this year.