Deepak Mantena brings us a full-length musical installment as Junk Culture in the form of Wild Quiet. The album gets going quickly with Oregon setting the tone and enthusiasm for the whole record. This is truly a well-produced indie-pop gem, with lo-fi punk rock guitars mashed together with an array of samples and pounding drums.
There are moments that give off an MGMT vibe, and Wild Quiet is certainly reminiscent of the first hearing of Oracular Spectacular. Admittedly it does occasionally lack the hooks that MGMT were parading back then, but there’s still something here – especially on the aforementioned Oregon. Although the tremolo soaked Ceremony comes close with its shoegaze, almost psychedelic feel.
Tracks like Young Love will entice fans looking for something a bit heavier. The hard-hitting drums and garage rock feel show Mantena’s broad range of influence on this album, which seamlessly blends the sample heavy and the guitar lead. At just over 32 minutes, it hard to say whether Junk Culture has achieved all its potential as there are moments on the album that feel like they are over all too soon. Be Good could easily turn into a six-minute prog-rock epic instead of coming in all too short at one minute forty-three.
There’s a definite pattern of progress from Matena which bodes well for the next release, and hopefully it might stretch out a little further next time round. But whether you find this album wild or quiet, it is certainly hard not to find it enjoyable and its woozy pop will leave an impression on listeners, leaving many eager for another installment.