In a pretty major divergence from their wild and noisy previous single “Christ In Capsule Form”, experimental rock brainiacs Godcaster have reemerged from whatever depths they inhabit with “Don’t Make Stevie Wonder”, a comparatively cleaner and firmly coordinated single that maintains its prior’s math-rock roots and hurried demeanor. From the get-go, Bruce Ebersole’s smooth and funky bass line collaborates with frenzied guitars and disorienting drums, before Judson Kolk nasally belts out “Don’t make Stevie Wonder – wonder – if he’s appreciated”, an appeal to respect past traditions of music not dissimilar to their own. There’s an undeniable maturation of the band’s sound present, as they strike a balance between “ars gratia artis” and technical prowess as a result of performing with each other for some time.
Here, Godcaster spruces up their already reliable sonic palette with the inclusion of sleigh bells, guitar accents, and the return of Von Lee’s airy flutes playing in conjunction with David McFaul’s keyboard. Lee’s increased role as a vocalist provides an airy counterweight to Kolk’s intense delivery, though the mixing does often cause his “oh yeah!” adlibs to eclipse her own vocal contributions, rendering the lyrics illegible.
“Don’t Make Stevie Wonder” was recorded to tape by New York dynamo Ryan Power. The production here lends the track two very riveting and unique ingredients: one being the crisp and warmly saturated touch of an early 70s era jam, and two being the open spaciness of a live recording. The latter point gives the track significant weight as the band plunges into their trademark deluge of wild guitars and powerful drumming. With cleaner production than the band has explored previously, each sonic element is given an increased spotlight, which is beneficial to the talented group.
Though it clocks in at just less than four minutes, “Don’t Make Stevie Wonder” is one of the longest songs Godcaster has released thus far, proving its necessity as a single far more than “Christ In Capsule Form” had. Every second is necessary as Godcaster creates demented and esoteric world of freakish imagery, self-referential iconography, and possibly their best work to date.
- Dynamic and interesting instrumentation
- Production gives listener space to explore the sound
- Vocal collaboration between Kolk and Lee adds sonic flare
- Extremely catchy
- That same mixing also causes certain sonic aspects to be obscured
- A bit repetitive
Listen to the song here! Let us know what you think of “Don’t Make Stevie Wonder” in the comments below.