Don’t Ask Why, Just Go

February 13th, 2013

WHY? are such a pleasantly odd band that it’s hard to not spend all your energy describing what makes them so unique as opposed to so damn good, but I’ll do my best to elaborate on both. WHY? began as a stage name for the then Berkeley, Calif.–based artist Yoni Wolf in 2004, although he’s now based out of his hometown, Cincinnati, or in his own words: “the land of Procter & Gamble and cop scandals.” The group plays a wide range of instruments and doesn’t shy away from the occasional three-part harmony. And on their most recent album, last year’s Mumps, Etc. (stream it below), almost everything is centered around rhythm—and despite all the instrumentation, their sound never feels cluttered. If WHY? (above, playing “Sod in the Seed” for Altar TV) fall under any one genre, it’d be rap, but it’s such a peculiar form of rap that the moniker indie is usually also involved. Wolf’s singing voice sounds almost like what you’d imagine They Might Be Giants to sound like if they ever began rapping. They’re incredibly interesting, and you can see them tonight at Music Hall of Williamsburg—Dan Rickershauser