Wild Suburban Boy by Mark Vennis is a powerful and fun indie rock anthem about the liminal space in childhood and the hubris of youth.
Beginning with this beautiful and delicate guitar melody, the track starts slowly before building in a counter riff to work with it. The two guitar melodies bounce off and harmonise with each other in a cathartic way. There is also honesty, simplicity, and vulnerability in the initial notes. To me, this feels like a reminder of life before the wild suburban boy adopted his chaotic persona or a peak behind the curtain of how he feels on the inside. Either way, it’s a gentle way to introduce us to the song’s vibe, not overwhelming us with intense instrumentation right from the get-go.
The drumming is the next aspect to contribute to the composition. It’s tight and energetic, adding a palpable energy to the slow and raw opening guitar part. It ebbs and flows with the power of the composition, allowing the vocals and guitar to have their moments and building them up in the more powerful sections of the track.
I think the lyrics explore the vulnerability of growing up nicely. The line “walk the streets like you mean it” feels like the inescapable sensation of not quite knowing what you’re doing that plagues many people's youths. It’s almost like the protagonist is walking the streets because that’s what he thinks he should be doing, adding a strange contrast between his wildness and his understanding of authority. In a sense, by rebelling, he's doing what is expected of him.
The vocals have a subdued emotion and palpable confidence that balance between each other, shifting the emphasis as the song requires. It shows a deep understanding of the song’s lyrics and great vocal control to cross that delicate emotional bridge, letting the track feel energetic while allowing emotion to peek through.
I’m impressed with this track’s subtle yet strong thematic links and it’s excellent execution. The guitar work in particular is a real standout right from the start. Fans of indie rock will have a good time with this compelling anthem.