Craig Wedren - "I Am a Wolf, You Are the Moon" (audio) (premiere)
On his latest single, Craig Wedren draws from his experience in the music circuit to inhabit styles from within. Call it ambient pop with a post-dubstep bent.
If you're familiar with Craig Wedren, chances are you know him from one of two domains: as the frontman and vocalist of weirdo, 1990s post-hardcore act Shudder to Think, or as the prolific film and TV composer. Though neither of these facets would seem to signal the uncanny beauty of his imminent solo record, Adult Desire, out next month.
What strikes me most about Wedren's new work is that it's by no means stuck in the past. An avid listener of modern sounds, he named Kendrick Lamar and Burial as influences. And it shows. While many composers for screen take an outsider-looking-in approach, Wedren draws from his experience in the music circuit to inhabit styles from within. Call it ambient pop with a post-dubstep bent. So Wedren doesn't just rehash old sounds… Or perhaps he does but in the most interesting way possible.
The artist keeps a digital storehouse of ideas and fragments, unused and unfinished tunes that never reared their heads in soundtrack form. Like Eno, Wedren considers these materials infinitely elastic, smashing them apart and building them back up again. Exciting results ensue.
Here we present the premiere of Wedren's second single off Adult Desire, "I Am a Wolf, You Are the Moon". If this title sounds familiar and you don't know why, here are four words for you: Wet Hot American Summer — the prequel, that is. Wedren is actually responsible for the all the music in this star-studded Netflix spin-off, including this little gem.
Wedren's album rendition of "I Am a Wolf" is far cry (howl?) from the Wet Hot version. What was once a campfire sing-along, led by Paul Rudd and a chorus of what feels like the entire cast, now sounds like a clear blue sky with a few wispy, geometric clouds across it. Crystal production brings together Wedren's tender half-whisper, percussive clacking and quivering peals of synth.
As for the song's meaning: "I Am a Wolf, You Are the Moon", in Wedren's words…
"…is a love song about the past, present and future. It's about the romantic, idealistic, even revolutionary kind of love one experiences at a certain age—very demonstrative and external. It's also about my wife and I, and many of our friends, who on a daily basis struggle with the heavy mundanities of adult life, which, for many, add up to a kind of death by a thousand cuts. "I Am a Wolf" is a reminder to tend to the fire of one's desire, and to keep the pilot light ON in the face of creeping reality and a bottomless to-do list.
Craig Wedren's new album, Adult Desire, comes out 8 December on his own label, Tough Lover.