22 September 2015

wecamefromwolves - wecamefromwovles

So here is the first of the reviews from the acts from 'You Heard It Here First - Rock Vol 1' compilation (cleverly linked here) which is by wecamefromwolves.  As outlined on the previous blog, wecamefromwolves come from Glasgow in Scotland; classing themselves as alternative rock/heavy pop they are currently made up of Kyle Charles James Burgess on vocals/guitar, Rob Whytock on bass/vocals, Harrison White on drums/vocals & Taylor White on Guitars.  The song which was on that release was from an EP called 'Paradise Place' which was released in 2014.  This self-titled album was released (according to Amazon) on 1 June this year, as we speak they are currently on a UK tour.  Now on the compilation I said they were a bit of a dark horse, so as we head towards the end of year charts and all of that sort of jazz - will this one be up there?

The first track is called "Wolves" which starts with an acoustic guitar being plucked gently at the beginning but it starts to build up with a wall of feedback coming in as deep bass string adding a chill to the atmosphere to the opening of this album, it is over in just over a minute as the band start with "Glasgow Stranger".  It has a big sounding riff at the beginning of the song, it is a darker pop punk number which deals with the feeling of isolation that can found when you are no longer in the place where you were originally from.  It keeps the verse tighter and focused, with the chorus of solidarity and hope sounding like an anthem to those who are experiencing similar circumstances.  It does not explode the album, but it sometimes that it is not required; sometimes you need to feel like someone understands.  The next song is called "Am I Useful?"  which deals with feelings of inadequacy and trying to copy with conflicting emotions, something that a lot of people are dealing with all the time and how singing a song can sometimes make a person feel relevant.  Musically it is somewhere between Biffy Clyro and Reuben, with a small sprinkling of Saves The Day  and a hint of Maximo Park as well.  It is very emotive (not emo, that is a fashion statement these days), full of self-doubt and the desire for change for the better; another interesting number for this album.  Track four is called "Coraline" and I am glad to say that it does mention the button on eyes which are from the Neil Gaiman story, but it is really about being in a relationship and the feelings that evolve from that situation.  It reminds me of some early Far in this one, there is a Jonah influence to this song and it feels so innocent (a word which is used quite often on this song) in its delivery.  The bass & drums take up the main work of the song, the guitars are more atmospheric here and it feels like a sunbeam on a darker day.

"Butterflies" is the next song on the album feels darker for this album; the song about atmospheres being ruined, loves being lost and voices being drawn to silence as emotions cannot be sang anymore.  It moves to a different beat to the first few songs of the album, the emotions are on display and there is a raw taint to the words; it does not explode as song which is something that many bands have done before, it keeps it tight until it is needed and even then it is measured & controlled eruption - it is a really good number on this album.  "Where'd Your Love Go?"  continues on the darker path that started on "Butterflies", with doubts about a relationship and if the person in question is going to stay or go.  The haunted guitar that opens the song gives way to a moody slow drawn riff that is not in the mood to give you the time of day.  The song moves very slowly and out of all the numbers, it is the one which also reminds me a bit of Elbow in places (something that I was not expecting to be honest) and keeps the album going in the right direction.  With an acoustic opening, "Validate Me" keeps the mood firmly dark, with the subject matter of wanting to be accepted and loved whilst looking like everyone else in the world.  It feels like the need to meet someone is taking the strain of the protagonist of the song, everything is coming to the end of the night and the desperation is coming to the forefront of the mind.  Musically, it is very dynamic with a slow burning feeling to the music that cements it as one of the key moments of the album.

"You Backed the Wrong Horse" follows on and to be honest, it feels like a blinding light after the darkness of the last three numbers.  The subject is not that light, but musically it has a sing along quality to the song.  It reminds me of Finch, Biffy Clyro and Homegrown (not a combination I thought I would see to be honest).  It is a really good song that sounds like it will get people bouncing along to the song and feeling a kinship with the words and the band.  "I Know you’re leaving" does exactly what it says on the tin - it is a song about a mistake that ends a relationship and one person begging for another chance.  It is a pop punk number that deals with a subject that can be sensitive and drapes it over a bouncy riff and the song has a Honeycrack sense of style - for those who do not know, Honeycrack was one of the many bands that CJ from the Wildhearts formed after he originally left them; if you need to ask who the Wildhearts are, have you been paying attention to this blog page?!?!?!?! - It is a clever number for me, showing another style for this band.  The penultimate track to the album is "Ruiner" and no, it is not a cover of the Nine Inch Nails song.  You get a sense that the lead singer is not very lucky in love (sometimes his own fault, sometimes others) throughout this album, poor mite; it is another song about a relationship gone sour and the singer admitting he is a bit of a selfish man, and this song deals with the guilt that arises from that lifestyle.  Musically it is as good as anything on the album, lyrically it sounds like someone is trying to exorcise old ghosts and wants to move on to new pastures.  Ending the album is "I Need Something" which is primarily driven by an acoustic guitar to begin with, and at the half way point the rest of the band join in.  The themes of isolation, desire for change and the need to belong come back again, the song goes for broke and has an epic feeling to it.  The dynamics between the two sections of the song sounds fantastic, you get bands who try this type of number and it falls flat - not this time.  It is very good and ends the album on a high point, which fades into feedback once the song has finished.

As debut albums go, this is a very good release when all is said and done.  The middle section of "Butterflies", "Where Did You're Love Go?" and "Validate Me" is a dark section to the album, which is sandwiched between two sections that showcase what the band is all about.  A couple of number feel interchangeable, but as this is their first release it is part of the course.  The album ends on some of the strongest songs of the record, with a sense that this band will have a few more records in them.   I do hope that this leads onto another few albums, it feels like the beginning of something more and promise is always good; one to watch for the future and a first album which gives the band a firm base on which to go forward.

7.5 out of ten - This is good and worth checking out

Top track - Validate Me

You can purchase the digital version of the album from Amazon here

You can follow their activities on Facebook here (which also has links to twitter and such things)

You can stream the album on Soundcloud here

You can stream the album on Spotify here

You can stream the album on Deezer here

You can stream the album on Tidal here

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