Dex Wolfe is a composer, recording engineer and producer from Minneapolis. The multi-talented musician’s debut EP, Lightness, is a culmination of several years spent honing his diverse technical skill set and embracing the ups and downs of living a creative life, overcoming personal grief, and learning self-love. Across four ornately-arranged tracks, Wolfe creates a stunning collage of intricate sounds that instrumentally range from gloomy guitar passages to uplifting synth-scapes. Understated yet quietly eclectic, his musical makeup takes inspiration from elements of post-rock, jazz fusion, and Elliott Smith’s intimate folk wizardry. On “Lightning,” an eerie tune written in the midst of an awe-striking storm in Wisconsin, Wolfe captures the internet age’s indifference to the natural world inside a mixture of inverted guitar lines, haunting blips of noise, and unsettling vocal textures. A similar darkness seeps into the ambient acoustics of “Little Car” and the tense rhythms of “Highly Likely,” amplifying each track’s overall sense of despair. The gorgeous closing instrumental, “Love Breaks,” alleviates the bleak atmosphere of the previous cuts with soothing loops of percussion and weeping guitar melodies that evoke the feeling of joyful tears streaming down a weary cheek. Deliberately warmer in tone, the song admirably captures the album’s persistent search for solace and tranquility in the presence of pain.
Purchase and stream Dex Wolfe’s new EP Lightness out everywhere Friday, October 23.