Wolf & Cub – Vessels
Adelaide’s Wolf & Cub come on like the bastard sons of Kyuss, Mogwai and the almighty Zepp. The band’s got two drummers for crying out loud, so you know bombast is the order of the day. They’ve sealed their stoner rock credentials by traveling all the way to Glasgow to record and mix some of the album with Mogwai producer Tony Doogan in Mogwai’s own Castle Of Doom studio in the west end. And a might beast it is too.
With songs that range from less than three minutes to the title track’s opening seven minute salvo, Vessels doesn’t let up. Even on a slower track “March of the Clouds” is just like wading through a thick sonic fog. This is an album that’s going to give a subwoofer as big work out, especially on something like the almost bass-led “Kingdom”. “Rozalia Bizarre” is a fizzing, sinewy track that closes with some howling guitar lines.
Understandably, the lead single, “This Mess” was chosen as it is probably the most direct thing on the whole album. That and “Steal Their Gold” (if you take out the surprise tempo change half way through to the end). There is the nagging sensation that if the band did away with their instrumental jams (or streamlined them into actual songs), the album could have been even better. The easy going outro “Vultures (Part 2 Section 2)” is a nice listen but would have benefited from some vocals to make it at least stylistically fit in with the whole album. Nonetheless, Vessels is a great debut album that hopefully points the way to maybe something even greater.
Wolf & Cub – This Mess :