Read & Burn 03

Ever ready to zig when a zag would suffice, Wire returns from a brief hiatus with their first new material since 2003. Where Send finished off their angry-old-man phase, however, this more contemplative release actively confronts the notion of slowing down. Consequently, even the shortest of its four songs clocks in at almost five minutes; the longest, “23 Years Too Late,” lasts nearly 10. If the result sometimes sounds more like a Colin Newman solo jaunt, Bruce Gilbert’s chunky guitars, Robert Grey’s aggressively metronomic drumming, and a sneering, inscrutable lead vocal from Graham Lewis prove it’s pure Wire. Enjoy it while you can: As the chorus in “Our Time” goes, “The time is right, the time is wrong / The time, it comes and then is gone.”