Tag Archives: the wrens

The Wrens’ Secaucus is the best album of the 1990’s.

I know, I know, but in these troubled times, you’ve got to be bold.

The truth is: I feel like my ongoing project to serve as an Online Wrens Apologist is going poorly. When I get to heaven and Jesus asks me if I did what I could to disseminate Secaucus and The Meadowlands, I need to be able to tell him I did what I could.

This album is not particularly influential, it’s not immediately accessible, but probably more than any album, Secaucus is the album that simply does not wear out. It is absolutely inexhaustible. 13 years of moderate and sometimes heavy listening cannot break it.

Secaucus is also the album that will always sound the most like the Wrens to me. Silver sounds at times like the Pixies, The Meadowlands sounds like the best of the early 00’s sonic landscape, but Secaucus sounds only like itself.

Here are 3 (legal) MP3s from Secaucus to get you started:

And 4 from other albums:

And then a couple more Secaucus tracks from YouTube:

Finally, you can stream the whole thing here. If you need more convincing, talk to me.

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RIGID RUMORS drops today.


Gabe Durham – Rigid Rumors (2009) – download the zip file here

A new album of previously uncollected remixes, 2.5 years in the making.

1. Fan in the Stands
2. Yeah Yeah Uh Uh Oo Oo Ooh
3. No Planes
4. Yoko in Idaho
5. First You Reel Me Out…
6. …Then You Cut the String
7. Ends to my Friends
8. No Beatbox in Baseball
9. Salty and Sweet Like
10. Woke Me Up
11. Prison for Jerks

http://www.mediafire.com/?wzy5znvzjl5 (192 kbps / 39 mins)

If you want to try before you buy, the whole thing is currently streaming on MySpace.

Featuring the Music of (roughly in order of descending importance): Bjork, Biggie Smalls, Radiohead, Andrew Bird, Outkast, M.I.A., Josh Ritter, the Swell Season, Madonna, Glen Phillips, The National, TV on the Radio, LCD Soundsystem, Damien Rice, The Beatles, Blind Melon, Animal Collective, Beyonce, The Proclaimers, John Lennon, The Traveling Wilburys, Kanye West, Spoon, Pavarti Khan, of Montreal, Daft Punk, David Garza, Margot and the Nuclear So & Sos, Cake, The Mountain Goats, Rilo Kiley, They Might Be Giants, Wednesday Night Worship, Dave Brubeck Quartet, Sufjan Stevens, Biodome 5, Simon and Garfunkel, The Arcade Fire, Ella Fitzgerald, Ben Folds, David Gray, Wilco, Goldspot, Klaxons, The Wrens, The Decemberists, Beck, The Waifs.

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Pay Me to Write the Definitive Wrens Book

It’s hard to love a band that moves so slowly. All the Wrens have real jobs. One has a wife and kids. They are in their 40’s and are no longer hungry to become the biggest band in the world.

When their last album came out, I made an event out of it. I was a college freshman. I listened to it in my car, by myself, while staring at nothing, loving it. Soon, there will have been as much time passed between Meadowlands and ??? as between Secaucus and Meadowlands.

If I were a big Of Montreal fan, I’d get a new album to enjoy every other month. As it stands, I’d bet we’re going to have to wait another 2-4 years for the next Wrens album.

Sometimes I think I should be the one to write the book about The Wrens. Ideally, the genre will be “band biography meets in-depth song-by-song analysis meets gushy teenage girl homage meets Hunter S. Capote.”

Here is the first chapter. A taste of what I’m capable of. And if anyone wants to pay me, like the 33 1/3 series, I’ll write the rest.

Chapter One: Beginnings

A band of prodigious sunscorched suburban trash-minstrels, the Wrens are from New Jersey.

One time, they got fired for playing the Pixies’ “Debaser” to a crowd of old people. Isn’t that funny? Do you think Charles would like hanging out with me?

Gabe Wrens

Gabe Wrens

Gabe Wrens

Gabe Wrens :)

At one point, Greg turned to Kevin. “You know this is going to be big, don’t you?” Greg regarded Kevin warily, as if saying it out loud might uncork the sinewy talented brew that was bubbling beneath the surface.

Sometimes The Meadowlands is my favorite album. Sometimes it’s Secaucus. It’s never Silver, but some of the songs on Silver are among my favorites.

I wish the Wrens would put out all their b-sides like they promised to do.

According to Wrens.com, “The wrens issue first full length, Silver (1994), to surprising and wonderful critical acclaim.” And yet Pitchfork said this: “The band has no shortage of ideas here, but trying all of them at once bogged down these otherwise fine performances.” Who is right? You be the judge!

Little did this young riptide of ethereal talent realize, their lo-fi big-city aural dreams were about to make rock history…

End of Chapter One