Not much information is out there about Bradley Wik, but by his own admission much of his past few years has been spent traveling across the country, testing and refining his music. If that goes to show anything about him, it’s the passion he holds for music, and that passion shines through in his debut album, “Burn What You Can, Bury the Rest.”
Now many people have some negative perceptions of country music, and sometimes for good reason. The kind you hear on the radio is full of empty patriotism and bluster, and gives a bad name to the genre. In contrast, “Burn What You Can” is low and brooding, and focuses more on reminiscent themes than in your face nationalism. What’s more, these songs actually sound authentic, pulling from Bradley’s own personal experiences. That alone is a rare quality in current music, but a band can’t rely on that alone.
And they don’t. As far as musical composition goes, this album has it all. The guitar is well paced and strong, but not even close to overpowering. Wik’s voice is low, and accented, with just the right amount of grit to be both intelligible and brooding. The drums are ever present but not obtrusive, and the piano always chimes in during the songs’ crescendos. What’s most impressive is how well each element blends into a cohesive song, rather than focusing on one aspect of music. In fact, the lacking quality is the length of the album, at only eight songs.
While much younger than most in the alternative country genre, Wik clearly has a lot of enthusiasm for his music, and he seems poised to make a name for himself. This album makes a strong impression, making it even more impressive for a new artist.