Nearly a year and a half after its intended release, Wilderado’s debut self-titled album is ready to make its way into the world.
With the world put on pause as a result of the pandemic, the band chose to take this as an opportunity to perfect their full length album that they began writing in 2018 – thus resulting in a 10-track LP that frontman Maxim Rainer takes pride in.
“There’s not a thing on [the album] that I would change, to tell you the truth,” says Rainer. “It is just exactly what we wanted to make… And we got to spend the time needed to make it the way we wanted.”
Thematically, the album describes a cycle being in a dark place but still managing to find a way to come up for air.
“We get so stuck in these moments where we’re down,” says Rainer. “I think the confusion lies a little a bit in where you understand you’re allowed to and should feel those emotions – but also you should allow yourself to come back up when that time comes… and I’m a believer that that time does come – and it’s our duty to not miss it.”
The way the album flows reiterates the main theme of the album. Going down, coming back in – just like the cycle of emotions flowing in and out. Rainer shares that the track listing was very intentionally curated for the listeners’ experience.
Perhaps the most evident song signaling the heaviness of going “down” is “The Worst Of It,” a stand-out track marked with an introduction of dark guitar tones and a driving rhythm. Like the juxtaposition represented in the album’s theme, it balances a fascinating contrast between darker tones that isn’t seen much elsewhere on the album, with a more hopeful tone that is carried in the chorus.
According to Rainer, “The Worst of It,” was inspired by leaving his daughter for touring.
“Knowing what it is like to experience the most painful thing as a parent, which is being away from your child… I know what that’s like. I just had this hopeful idea that if that’s the worst of it, maybe the rest … we can just do it.”
But the story doesn’t stop here – this track, placed in the exact halfway point of the album, serves as a gateway to the rest of the album, which sonically drives home the idea of an internal battle between feeling sad and allowing oneself to come back from such dark places.
It is followed by “Surefire” – the band’s first single released back in 2019, and the first song that kickstarted the album.
According to Rainer, the plan was always to have the popular track on the album. And even though it was well known by fans of the band, the placement of “Surefire” on the LP gives the track new life, allowing the lyrics of the song to speak to new volumes in ways that weren’t as apparent when it stood as a standalone single.
Rainer explains that the song comes from a dark place, but listeners can clearly hear that sonically the song is an anthem, championing the choice to live .
Out of the entire album, Rainer shares that some of his favorite lyrics come from the track “Outside My Head.”
“…all the world and its minutes are for everybody in it…”
“… now everything I’ve missed has led me straight to this…”
With poignant lyrics like these, “Outside My Head” serves as the shepherding track that leads the listener to the same realization that Rainer himself came to conclude – life is an ebb and flow of emotions, and it’s our duty to float along with that tide rather than fight it.
The Wilderado LP isn’t just a collection of songs. It is a map of attempting to understand oneself. We’re listening to Rainer’s own self-reflection, we’re hearing the conversations he has had with himself, and we are experiencing his own realizations firsthand – there might be moments of darkness, but good moments are coming.
Wilderado is out everywhere on October 15.