The local husband-and-wife duo of Scott Peterson (guitar and vocals) and Sarah Siplak (viola and vocals) has long provided a charming live show, previously as Scotts Roger and now as The Wreckids. (You may also remember Siplak from Boxstep earlier in the decade.) How their live charisma would translate to a recording was the question in play upon the release of The Wreckids' debut EP, Singing You to Sleep But Giving You Nightmares.
Recorded by Donora's Jake Hanner, the debut EP mixes acerbic commentary, dulcet harmonies and plain hyperbolic silliness in appealing proportions. Playful, irreverent, sometimes even goofy, The Wreckids avoid reducing themselves to a novelty act through pure chops -- in terms of both songwriting and musicianship.
The first track, "What'R We Gonna Do?", might lead one to believe it's all fun and games: "Chubby girls are better in the sack / I know I'm in for something good when baby got back," the duo intones. The pair's sarcastic wit may not be for everyone, with tongue-in-cheek attacks on consumerism and aggression front and center: "Has your big, muscular pit bull / bitten the soft, cuddly neck of a kitten today? / Then you haven't lived today," begins the final track, "What I Mean to Say." But these more serious, earnest messages are packaged so cleverly, and bolstered with such levity, it's tough to resist being at least impressed, if not won over.
The Wreckids CD release with Meeting of Important People and Nik Westman & The Central Plains 9 p.m. Fri., Feb. 19. Thunderbird Café, 4023 Butler St., Lawrenceville. $5. 412-682-0177 or www.thunderbirdcafe.net