You?d think Lume?s Joeri Bruyninckx is a frustrated misogynist by reading some of the Dutch song titles on ?Wouter?. ?Vrouwen Moeten in hun Bos Blijven? (women should stay in their woods), ?Vrouwen Mogen het Signaal niet Geven? (women aren?t allowed to give the signal), jesus man, how about these liberal Belgians eh?
When you hear Lume?s music though, you can?t think of Bruyninckx as a spiteful person. The packaging of this album alone refutes such an idea; a cute embroidered sleeve and a soft pink envelope doesn?t exactly spell I hate you.
?Wouter? is a charming piece of work. It?s little music, ultimately, with almost all tracks around two minutes long and tiny ideas that get blown up to carry a song. The roaring effects of which ?Ik Ga de Wolken aan Elkaar Kleven? consists of, the minuscule glitches in ?De Wolken Zien er Moe Uit?, everywhere else they?d be almost undetectable background fluff but Lume has the guts to put them up front to carry the weight. The down side is that those tiny ideas often lack tension, coherence, excitement, structure. Basic stuff that?s equally important as creativity, something Bruyninckx undeniable has a lot of.
?Vrouwen Moeten in hun Bos Blijven? is a bit more daring, a blazing loop in the background and a real nice guitar melody and groovy toms on top, alongside some vocal crackle. Turns out to be the most developed and challenging track on ?Wouter?, with the exception of the last one, ?Als Ik Alleen Thuis Ben is het Vuurwerk? (when I?m home alone it?s fireworks). With more than eight minutes Bruyninckx this time takes a moment to lay down an engaging bass rhythm and structures his messed up vocals and feedback around it, it sounds like a strange Dead C. outtake, slowed down a bit.
I?m not sure whether Bruyninckx feels ?Wouter? is a high mark for Lume but I?m sure there?s more from where this came from and probably a lot better. He just needs to find the patience and guts to stretch his ideas a bit longer. Maybe then we?ll have a genuine new, virtually unique Belgian name to list in our books. 6/10 -- Joris Heemskerk (5 September, 2007)