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Reviewed by Amanda Mills

Wet Specimen: Wet Dreamin’

Reviewed by Amanda Mills

Wet Specimen: Wet Dreamin’

Ōtepoti musicians Lucy Hunter and Reg Norris (also of Dunedin’s legendary Opposite Sex) joined forces with Christopher Schmelz for their new venture Wet Specimen.

The trio’s debut record, ‘Wet Dreamin’, is a dark and dreamy delight, full of vivid imagery, uneasy guitar textures, and scattered rhythms.

Unsurprisingly, there are reminders of Opposite Sex here, but these are only fleeting. Wet Specimen have a distinct sound, with elements of shoegaze, and dreamy, romantic melodicism weaving in-and-out of the songs, co-existing with the harder, experimental tonality of the guitars.

The album is a collection of intriguing songs that come from the heart of Dunedin’s darker sounds, and it’s hard to pick a standout, although Heaven’s Gate has a great 60s vibe and lovely vocal, and The Dirt is a rollicking trip through some of Hunter’s best wordplay – “bury your kill” indeed.

All three band members bring their best on ‘Wet Dreamin’’, but Hunter’s presence is undeniable. Hunter is an exceptional vocalist who can swing from melodious to abrasive in the blink of an eye, and the faint detachment she occasionally brings to her delivery adds an extra layer to songs like First Red Arrow, where the wistful melody contrasts with the off-kilter guitar line.

‘Wet Dreamin’’ is a hidden treasure, one well worth hunting out.

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