Tabs Out | Larry Wish – Laire Wesh

Larry Wish – Laire Wesh

2.19.20 by Ryan Masteller

Well, it’s nice to know that Larry Wish is as consistent now as he was back in the day. Although “Laire Wesh” was recorded and released in 2011, Wish, real name Adam Werven, decided to remaster this sucker (actually, “mastered for the first time ever”) and rerelease it under his Bumpy imprint. Why’d he do that, you ask? Well, he wanted to “apply … a fine polish to an album and effort close to my heart.” Makes sense to me! 

And no, I haven’t heard the original Soothing Almonds Collective release, so I can’t compare the two. But the 2019 version of “Laire Wesh” sounds great, the electric piano and synthesizer tones mixed right up front, sounding crisp and clean and so not like the backward DIY effort the original surely was. (Remember, no context for remarks like that.) Still, it’s clearly the work of a singular mind, a man with a 4-track and some keyed instruments and a drum machine, casio-pop for the painfully “wiggly and weird.” (Or are those live drums??) One thing is certainly clear: this is a labor of love and executed exactly how Werven wanted to execute it.

And of course the particular element that will garner attention is Wish’s voice itself. Delivered in a whimsical cartoon yawn, the vocals inject just the perfect amount of bizarre-ity, an exact fit for the crayon’d prog escaping from Larry Wish’s gleaming, candy-colored mind. Whether it’s piping out a nostalgic instrumental like opener “Riding His Bike Segment” or wannabe stadium anthem “Ubduction Revisited,” a new wave torch song like “The Designer” or even the tape-manipulated collage of “Secret Number,” “Laire Wesh” has a lot to offer and a lot to like, a nice distillation of Adam Werven’s oeuvre. It’s time to right the wrongs of missing this in 2011 and getting to it right now.

Ch-ch-ch-check it out!

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