Ever since emerging from South Wales, Casey have never been ones to shy away from how they truly feel. On their 2016 debut full-length, ‘Love Is Not Enough’, the quintet intricately explored broken relationships. Now merely 18 months on, they have returned with their second album, ‘Where I Go When I Am Sleeping’.
Having examined damaged ties last time out, ‘WIGWIAS’ allows vocalist Tom Weaver to open up and explain the various health troubles that have dogged him since birth. It makes ‘WIGWIAS’ a strenuous, demanding listen yet is ultimately rewarding.
Throughout, Weaver gives a raw account of his struggles and the mental effects they gave him. ‘Phosphenes’ has a sense of familiarity with its abrasive burst with Weaver detailing the suffering and feeling of isolation as he copes with brittle bones, ulcerative colitis and manic depression. When paired with the delicate ‘Fluorescents’, he sings of being a burden to loved ones.
While Weaver’s trials and tribulations are the lyrical spine to ‘WIGWIAS’, he is accompanied by an expansive and absorbing instrumentation as his bandmates ease in post-rock elements to their melodic post-hardcore base. Songs such as ‘Making Weight’ and ‘Bruise’ beautifully drift along with atmospheric guitars, and in the case of the latter, tribal-like drums that stir to the emotional release in its chorus. While ‘Flowers By The Bed’ has flashes of shoegaze.
It all comes to ahead on ‘Wound’. Partly a roaring blast of angst, it ends with Weaver directly speaking of his experiences; collapsing on the bathroom floor leading to giving him a new perspective while admitting he still struggles but is strong.
Admittedly ‘WIGWIAS’ is a emotionally heavy, at times exhausting, record that requires your full attention. It’s lyrics deserved to be poured over. Not just to understand Tom Weaver’s story but to admire the honesty and maturity of his words. When accompanied by refined, almost seamless musicianship, you have a glimpse of a band on the brink of something truly special.
‘Where I Go When I Am Sleeping’ by Casey is released on 16th March on Hassle Records (UK) / Rise Records (US).
Words by Sêan Reid (@SeanReid86)