"I'm Turning Into You" - Wheels On Fire
There's something about the summertime that makes this sort of driving, garage-y stomper, complete with wheezing keyboards, the perfect soundtrack for warm breezes and open car windows. (And for anyone roughly in the neighborhood, what about a big shout-out for the amazing summer weather we've been having in the mid-Atlantic so far? The nicest I can possibly imagine for July: warm blue days, cool starry nights, no air conditioning necessary.)
Front and center in the song--the first thing you hear, and what the song is framed on--is an urgent, unadorned guitar riff: five tinny chords, strummed in a relentless rhythm: one; two; three; four-five. The beauty of the great guitar riffs is that they can kind of resemble each other--this one concludes in "Sweet Jane" territory--even while banging out their own piece of the rock'n'roll rock, as it were. A great riff doesn't have to be surprising, as a great melody must at some level be, and yet it can't be nondescript either. Rhythm and chord placement is everything; the effect is more primal than intellectual (think "You Really Got Me"; think "Roadrunner"; think "Alex Chilton"). This one rocks, which is all it's trying to do, and all it needs to do on another ideal July day.
Wheels On Fire is a four-piece from Athens, Ohio. You'll find "I'm Turning Into You" on the CD Get Famous, which was released back in February on Big Legal Mess Records, a label with a distribution deal with Fat Possum Records. MP3 via Big Legal Mess.