Release Date: Out Now
Right, hands up, I’ve been rocking this one so hard for the last month I forgot to put my thoughts down in words, so this is a little late but just strap on a pair of headphones and get with the programme, I have no time for your negativity. If you’ve yet to experience the visceral force of Bristol outfit Turbowolf then new album ‘The Free Life’ is a pretty good in but I’m a little disappointed in you, if I’m honest. The album kicks off (hard) with ‘No No No’ and aside from being the favourite phrase of 3-year-olds the world over this is also an insanely paced, bass fuelled piece of rock that is in no mood for waiting around so zip up your jacket and let’s get on with things.
Continuing with ‘Capital X’, featuring the talents of Joe Talbot from the excellent Idles, Turbowolf blend the eccentricities of Muse with the raw power of Queens of the Stone Age to create a tune that is huge of riff and catchy of hook. ‘Cheap Magic’ brings in Sebastian Grainger of Death from Above for a little extra power and that fuzzed up guitar/bass combo is beautifully powerful. Chantal Brown of Vodun is next up on guest duties, adding her hypnotic vocal talents to the intense ‘Very Bad’ that borrows from the White Stripes/the Dead Weather in terms of red-eyed evil vibes but with blistering riffs and drums the likes of which are not for the underprepared. ‘Halfsecret’ is all Turbowolf but lets up on the riffage for a while to give us something more otherworldly and twisting in terms of the melody but no less infectious and affecting.
|Turbowolf - Parklife|
The guest spots continue on one of the stand-out tracks ‘Domino’ as Royal Blood’s Mike Kerr gets involved with the rapid-fire guitar’n’bass combo blended with the kind of chorus shouting that I haven’t heard since the Automatic were a thing. By the time ‘Last Three Clues’ kicks in, you’re either in or out but if you’re out then you’re missing out on a seriously hefty chorus that finds our heroes in fighting mood. ‘Up & Atom’ borrows its title from a Simpson’s episode but takes the melodies from a nitro-charged version of the Flaming Lips on a day when they’ve been listening to just the right amount of Zappa.
The hook on ‘Blackhole’ is garage-punk but with more power, more raw energy and more balls out fuck-you attitude than anyone’s managed since Black Flag or the Stooges were starting out. Album title track ‘The Free Life’ is a Tarantino film in just under 6 minutes of song; from the slow, malevolent plod of the intro to the furious paced car chase of a middle eight and the high-octane final fight scene of a chorus – it’s a ride and not one that many will survive. ‘Concluder’ may sound like the name of a terrible 80s wrestler but it’s exactly the kind of song you need at the end of an album like this. The acoustic strum is reminiscent of something you might hear wafting from a cult’s strong hold while the other bits and pieces of instrumentation flinch and tweak with all the energy of a burnt-out party dude who can’t remember what happened before the party. Turbowolf are a vital, powerful and boundary pushing band that are pulling all the right strings and hitting all the right notes with this album so, like I said, if you’re unaware of them then this is your in.
More information: https://www.facebook.com/turbowolf/
2nd April – Musik & Frieden, Berlin
3rd April – Molotow, Hamburg
4th April – Melkweg Upstairs, Amsterdam
4th May – Teddy Rock, Blandford Forum
28th May – Brooklyn Steel, Brooklyn
31st May – Stage AE, Pittsburgh
3rd June - Marathon Music Works, Nashville
5th June – Stubb’s Waller Creek Amphitheater, Austin
6th June – Granada Theater, Dallas
8th June – Variety Playhouse, Atlanta
9th June – Plaza LIVE, Orlando
11th June – Revolution Live, For Lauderdale
14th June – The Fillmore, Charlotte
15th June – The National, Richmond
12th July – 2000 Trees, Cheltenham