Wolf & Cub - Science And Sorcery (2009)

Science And Sorcery is saturated in funk. After the verve of Vessels, the wolves and cubs have decided to lay back and produce a considerably looser record.

“What Are They Running” has a devilish Mayhew bass and a toe tapping kick drum, it’s irresistibly racy. The production is dirtier, forests away from the power production on Vessels by Tony Doogan. The song ends with improvised percussion, while vocalist Byrne howls and yelps. The wolves are following their instincts, making music more intuitively.

“One To the Other” assaults with, believe it or not, a saxophone. It’s positively lethal. Some Sorcery is then launched, as Wolf & Cub flex their visceral skills on the atmospheric “Master”. Riffs reverberate and the drum pulsates relentlessly while buried under heavy drones.

“Spider’s Web” rollicks along at a playful pace, while verses are interspersed with vocal modulations that sound like hooting owls. “Restless Sons” is bruised and soulful, “Change comes our way, but I don’t wanna be one of the helpless ones, I don’t wanna be one of your restless sons”. All the elements then converge into a jazzy fusion.

New producer and electro-eccentric, Bumblebeez, makes his presence known on “Hearts”. The song marks Wolf & Cub’s first foray into electronic sounds, but the artificial buttons are used sparingly and not as a desperate attempt at reinvention (sidenote: this accusing turn of phrase is directed at Yeah Yeah Yeahs).

“The Loosest of Gooses (Go On Your Own)” is a balls out, punch in the face. “Blood” is like pub vomit, replete with gritty guitars and a dazed chorus. “Burden” closes the record noisily and messily, the hazy production working an absolute treat.

A few years ago, international record label, 4AD, dropped Wolf & Cub. 4AD jumped ship prematurely, because this vessel is well and truly soaring. On their second record, Wolf & Cub have fleshed out their ideas to create a striking and kaleidoscopic long player.

Science And Sorcery: simply savage, so seductive.


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