Album Review: Carl Broemel – Wished Out

Although fans of critically-acclaimed indie rock band My Morning Jacket haven’t heard a new album since The Waterfall in 2015, this year has been the year of solo records for the Louisville, Kentucky rockers. Earlier this year, frontman Jim James released the remarkable Uniform Distortion, and recently he announced the acoustic version of the album – Uniform Clarity. In addition, lead guitarist Carl Broemel has released his fourth studio album Wished Out, and it is jam packed with the My Morning Jacket grooves that fans were highly anticipating.

The album blasts off with shredding guitar licks and a heavy drumbeat on track one, Dark Matter. The guitar hook on this song would have made sense on any My Morning Jacket album, which shows the true signature sound he possess. The next song and title-track calms the mood of the album slightly, but still rocks with a waltzy, indie anthem melody. The song features some falsetto vocals in the chorus that exhibits Carl’s vocal range and true musical talents.

My favorite song on the album is track three, Malibu Shadow. Perhaps the most unique and true solo song on the record without feeling that it could fit on a My Morning Jacket album, this song is an acoustic meditative night-time beach vibe experience. The track is driven by a mellow acoustic chord progression, and when the drums kick in the song gains even more peaceful excitement.

Track four Starting From Scratch jumps back to the signature My Morning Jacket style, with familiar guitar effects and overall melodies on all instruments. Another acoustic driven song, the simple structure makes it very memorable and easy to sing along with. The loud, boisterous rock style continues on Rain Check. The song features raging guitar solos and crashing drums that create a consistent rock energy, before slowing down for the next number, Just For You, which is delivered without any effects or distortion and portrays a clean, singer/songwriter gem. Second Fiddle, track seven, also contains a slower, more intimate vibe and is another song that could have been released by My Morning Jacket, with similar guitar riffs and driving drumbeats from previous records.

The energy on the last song of the album, Out Of Reach, picks up with an upbeat positive rhythm. Ending the album on an upbeat note is always a great way to keep listeners wanting more and that anticipation will gain even more fan attention on the next album.

Scott J. Herman