Premiere: Jonny Wanser - "Push Me Over"
Jonny Wanser is a Burlington, VT-based musician who first gained footing as a teen in Vermont's hardcore music scene in the mid-2000s. Over the course of a decade, his focus shifted towards electronic music—mash-ups specifically—where he found success in certain corners of the Tumblr-sphere and landed features on Vice and NTS. Now, after years of teasing snippets of new music, Wanser is finally ready to shed light on his most meticulous musical endeavor: Modern Pines.
Modern Pines is Wanser's first non-mixtape output. It's a highly conceptual body of work that follows the lifespan of a romantic relationship, which he further details in a press release:
"The album is a concept record that navigates the anatomy of a relationship. Each song is a stage of the relationship. (being single, going out, meeting someone, falling in love, everything's good, things get weird, arguments, everything is bad, a break, a break up and finally being single and content.)"
The album's lead single "Push Me Over" documents the stage where "things get weird"; where anxiety, low self-esteem and poor communication begin to derail the relationship. The song begins with a bouncy harpsichord that segues into a classical guitar fronted hip-hop beat reminiscent of As Cruel As School Children-era Gym Class Heroes. He goes on to pair clean pop sounds with some dark, confessional lyrics: "There's nothing I can do when I'm sleeping all alone and I'm creeping on your phone" before stadium sized synths and drums kick to the chorus.
With "Push Me Over" it's clear that Wanser is both a product & admirer of mid-2000s kitsch. With a little help from producer Jer Coons [Madaila, Caroline Rose], he keeps his grandiose dreams for this record maintainable and poppy, while still holding true to what made some of his mashup-mixes so surprising and special.
The whole thing sounds like early 2000s crossover-pop, revised and revisited. Anyone who is waiting for The Killers to revive those grime-y synth sounds from Hot Fuss will probably get excited about "Push Me Over". Listen below.
Jonny Wanser's debut LP Modern Pines is out Sunday, May 27th.
He plays at Ninety-Nine in Burlington, VT on Monday, 6/18 with Hit Bargain and OSABA. RSVP to the event here.