Diet Cig – ‘Do You Wonder About Me?’

By Tom Walsh

New York state indie duo Diet Cig promise a wealth of emotions on their sophomore record ‘Do You Wonder About Me?’. They want you to dance, to cry, to laugh, to commiserate, and over this collection of bubbly pop-infused tracks, they deliver in an abundance.

This is far from the tales of teenage hijinks pertinent in their debut ‘Swear I’m Good At This’; guitarist and singer Alex Luciano and drummer Noah Bowman have taken their time with ‘Do You Wonder About Me?’ to create a rich and layered record. It sways between mocking sneer and delicate sincerity, as the duo ponder where they stand in life, how they reckon with the people around them and where it all goes from here.

Opener ‘Thriving’ continues the tropes Diet Cig displayed during their debut with an unabashed bitterness towards people, and attempts to answer that nagging question of why we think of others we simply don’t care about. ‘Broken Body’ is an ode to self-loathing and learning how to deal with the person you’ve been and have since become, while the thrashing ‘Flash Flood’ is an explosive release of emotion.

Luciano carries a wonderfully soft siren song vocal style which lilts over delicate tracks such as ‘Worth The Wait’, a heartbreaking tale of young love and self-consciousness. The anthemic ‘Stare Into the Sun’, belies another notch Diet Cig are able to step up to, away from their typical garage rock sound, allowing Luciano’s range to soar.   

Diet Cig’s decision to take some time away from touring to write a new album pays dividends with ‘Do You Wonder About Me?’. It is a well thought-out, excellently structured record with instant classics such as ‘Night Terrors’ and ‘Broken Body’ split up with palate cleansing interludes. The rough edges of ‘Swear I’m Good At This’ have been smoothed out to create a compelling record.

The range of emotions you feel is real. There are moments where you want to shed a tear, there are moments where you can’t help but smile, and, yes, you do get an urge to take to the dance floor of your favourite bar (well, one day). ‘Do You Wonder About Me?’ is another notch on Diet Cig’s increasingly impressive bedpost.

TOM WALSH

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