Album Review: Wolfmother – Victorious

Victorious

wolfmother-victoriousReleased February 19th 2016

Classic Rock feels like a cliché phrase in certain parts of town, certainly with certain crowds, and it almost feels like the lead up to a punchline with anyone who professes the greatness of anyone attending the V Festival.

 

Wolfmother are not only laughing in the faces of these people on new LP Victorious, they’re flushing their heads down the toilet and stealing their lunch money. From the opening gallop of The Love That You Give, it’s unashamedly calling to Freebird, Zeppelin and Sabbath to unite, like a hard rock Captain Planet. Taking a victory lap only on the second track, title track Victorious comes through immediately on horse-back, swinging it’s shirt above its head and doing laps of a stadium it’s planning to be belted out in later. For a band that have gone through internal turmoil of line-up changes (Andrew Stockdale is now the only original member left, and has been for some time), label disputes and a cracking solo LP that just seemed to go more unnoticed on the radar than Borrell 1 did, this is a fantastic record from a band that are hugely reinvigorated.

 

Whilst classic-rock-comedy-buffoons The Darkness attempt another stolen moment in our ears, Wolfmothers Victorious is a record that truly deserves your attention. There’s more than enough bare-chest thumping rock n roll to shake a flying v at, but you’ve got folk in there, and then the Springsteen-esque Best of a Bad Situation, the Sabbath dredge of Happy Face and the bonkers titled Gypsy Caravan. I’m not mad on the folk track in the first half (Pretty Peggy), but that’s personal taste. If you want a bit of colour across your record, then you’ll probably slap out each track in its entirety, but for me, it’s a sore thumb on what can only be conceived as a modern day class rock masterpiece. Previous effort Cosmic Egg was…..OK…..but let’s be honest, it had about 3 good tracks. Where the self-titled debut succeeded, and Cosmic Egg just pissed everyone off, Victorious is buying you breakfast, because you really need to get your energy back up from the night you just spent with it.

 

Stockdale famously said that Slash requested his vocal duties for a solo LP of his, because he has “that old school delivery”. People laughed at the time. I laughed, but now I’m eating my words. If we break this LP down, what have we got? Vocal delivery – Robert Plant and Ozzy Osbourne smashed together, sharing a tongue, both fighting for control. Guitars – loads, and they’re ace. Bass – appropriately thumping. Drums – not over the top, but over the top enough to raise an eyebrow when they do something hot. The theme: balls-to-the-floor-fuck-you-classic-rock-because-it’s-back-kinda-cool.

 

Listen to Victorious in full on Spotify here:

 

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