Free and legal MP3: Wheels On Fire (garage-y stomper w/ vivid riff)

“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.

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