Once upon a time, Wye Oak was a Baltimore indie-pop/folk duo named after the state tree of Maryland. But they have grown since then, through the most familiar of twenty-first century instruments, synthesizers. Yet while many other acts have done it suddenly, seemingly either to catch on the trend, or just because it’s easier, Wye Oak have slowly evolved to the point of The Louder I Call, The Faster It Runs.
Louder is a synths record, but they feel more organic than the latest craze to hit the dance floor or indie artist sitting down to the electronic keys. There’s the strong press, with both depth and height, to the title track, but also a Beach House-esque wistfulness in “You of All People”. The scramble forward of “The Instrument” and “Symmetry” channel rock energy, while “Say Hello” is a bolder journey upward.
While other folk-to-synth journeys have felt unnecessary on one end or the other (or just all together), Wye Oak’s has developed nicely.