WOOLEN - Dweller On The Threshold

Woolen - Dweller On The Threshold

10 songs
45:29 minutes
***** ***
Heard Of Elephants


Formerly known as Pride Of Kenya, Los Angeles three-piece decided to continue as Woolen. In a time where most bands try to adhere to some popular style, it takes some courage to sound different, but if it’s done well, it should eventually pay out. It’s not easy to get instant access to what the band does on their debut Dweller On The Threshold. The ingredients are seemingly quite normal: there is indie rock, some post rock aesthetics, and a strong fondness for melodies. All of this is assembled in such an idiosyncratic way that you may find yourself alienated at first. The opener I Will Find A Way has a certain Asian feeling, with the guitar picking notes that follow the vocal line. The next song are much mellower than what we normally hear these days in the underground music world.

But don’t give up too easily on these three excellent musicians, and I promise you will be rewarded. Centre of attention is Paris Gulbro Patt who sounds like a crooner stranded in the rehearsal room of a post rock band. This juxtaposition of mellifluous vocals with subdued indie post rock instrumentation is not only very original, but also works surprisingly great. Another of the band’s strengths is the very varied songwriting. On the six minute long Southern Cooking, we get vocal effects that remind me of Cher, and later on really unpolished guitars that belie the band’s softness. With influences as different as Red House Painters, Slint, Black Sabbath and Deerhunter, you know that you will be in for something decidedly different. The only common factor is the brooding melancholy that creeps throughout the album, peaking on Deadly Initials with its anguished lyrics about fear of dying.

If you are by now sufficiently intrigued, do check out their music. You can buy their album, but the band also offers a free download of highest bitrate MP3 files and even – now that’s unusual! – a lossless FLAC version. I hope that Woolen’s originality will be rewarded in due time by much deserved success.

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