Musician and novelist David Wildman was called “Amazingly original and wild-ass awesome” by Chuck Palahniuk.
Now he’s rocking COVID with soulful songwriting in “Stir Crazy”, a new album from his fiery trio TELL.
TELL features cinematic pop/rock songs with killer dance beats and a nod to Eighties icons like Midnight Oil and Television.
“Stir Crazy”, the infectious-in-a-good-way title song and video, present the story of someone bottled up in a familiar hell. It’s rendered with stylish wit and high-energy guitar riffs that both shimmer and roar with the mixing magic of Paul Q. Kolderie, of Radiohead and Pixies fame.
Each of the 9 tracks has a story to TELL. In “Citizen of the World”, set to drop as a single May 4, a man has everything except love. “Rosemary Goes Away” says the past must be destroyed to move forward. In “Eyes Grow Wide” an unusual child brings hope for the future, “My Kind of Lie” truth loses all meaning, and an old friend cracks up completely in the big, epic closer “Followed by Helicopters.”
Author/rock critic Brett Milano writes: “If you’re a first-class songwriter, being shut down just might wind up turning you loose. The songs here present flawed but recognizable characters, all making their way through a desperate era. It’s a lot like real life in these times, only catchier.”
TELL’s sound features Wildman’s striking guitar hooks and passionate vocals that channel Tom Verlaine and David Bowie. Jay Raffi provides the distinctive touch with his standout wild pretzel bass approach, and the divebomb drumming of Chuck Ferriera drives it all forward.
Raffi and Wildman’s musical alchemy has been developing for years, playing together in various bands on the Boston scene. With this release they are operating at the pinnacle of their powers, despite barely seeing each other face to face while putting it together.
Wildman wrote, recorded and produced most of the tracks during the Covid, working with his home computer, laying down crunchy guitar and lush landscapes of keyboards and vocals. Paul Q. Kolderie heard the rough of the title song “Stir Crazy” and volunteered to mix it. That drew the attention of the fine folks here at Lunch Records.