The first time I spun Knock Knock Get Up; all I could think was, “How would these songs sound live?” Reason being is that the stage is where David Wax Museum thrives. I have had the pleasure once and they were all over the place. On stage, in the crowd, on top of the bar. They did everything but hop behind the bar and make me a cocktail. It was one of the more energetic shows I have seen, made even better by the fact that seemed to be love every second of being on the stage (or off it).
Much like The Avett Brothers sound has evolved over the years, so has David Wax Museum’s. For a band that was born as a combo of the Mexican son music with American folk, Knock Knock Get Up has made the Mexican folk influences more subtle. This is quite consistent with their prior effort Everything Is Saved and I believe this to be a wonderful thing.
To my humble ear, the band feels less constrained as if they realize it is not necessary to force the influence of the Mexican son music. This allows the talents of the two main members, David Wax and Sue Slezak to shine through, all the while using their past experience and musical influences.
The title comes from a line in Harder Before It Gets Easier. And if ever a song was meant for a live setting this is it. I can picture Slezak banging away on her donkey Jawbone and stomping away as Wax leads the crowd through a rabble-rousing folk number. According, fiddle, dog barking. Its all in there.
Knock Knock Get Up is a vibrant album that makes you happy to be alive. Watching this band mature and blossom has been a delight. Knock Knock Get Up is their fourth effort and they just keep getting better.