Juan Wauters, “Who Me?”
Juan Wauters came to the United States from Uruguay in 2002 and we should all be thanking his parents for making that trip because otherwise we might not have this fine platter of shambling folk-pop songs. Wauters started wheeling out reverb-drenched surf pop with The Beets and released a casually recorded debut (NAP: North American Poetry) under his own name last year, but Who Me? is his first crafted album and it’s a doozy. Wauters weaves in and out of Spanish and English, delivering tight, groovy pop gems in the realm of awkward/uber-cool forerunners like Jonathan Richman and Sonny Smith (OK, I guess the latter is more of a contemporary). His songs feel simple, his lyrics are enunciated to make him seem like a naïve, sun-kissed dude but, he’s managed to make an album of largely acoustic, jangling numbers which sit heavy on the brain for hours after—nothing so simple about that.