With his last name spelled the way it is, you can just imagine what the mean kids called Brandon when he was growing up. But it’s pronounced "Wired," and Brandon can have the last laugh as his debut album garners national attention.

The first half of Painting a Burning Building lets you get accustomed to Wiard’s voice, filled with gentle wonderment on melancholy songs like "Miss Michigan" and "Since You’ve Gone Away." Then Wiard experiments with the quirky, four-part "Old Heartless Sun," jumping from a beat-box vocal shared with Liz Auchinvole to a gothic moment and then an a cappella verse, finally ending with a gospel flourish.

Wiard harmonizes with Kara Dupuy on "Moving On," a bouncy pop gem tucked into the latter part of the album that leaves the listener hungry for more from the pair. Brian Vander Ark of the Verve Pipe and Ben Wilson of Blues Traveler also appear on the album.

Grade: B

Painting a Burning Building is currently available.