Wolfmother burst onto the scene a little more than 10 years ago with their self titled psychedelic rock album that featured the hits Woman and Joker & The Thief, followed it up with their sophomore Cosmic Egg, and are back with New Crown, the latest in their quiver of albums. It’s pure Wolfmother, raw unadulterated rock that gets the head nodding as soon as Track 1 comes on. Andrew Stockdale had a chat with Glam Adelaide about the album, what they’ve been up to, and about their slot at Groovin’ The Moo .
“Since we did Cosmic Egg, we toured for about 2 years playing huge festivals in Europe, Lollapalooza in Chicago, we played with Soundgarden which was a highlight, “ says Stockdale. “I also put out a solo album a year after Cosmic Egg, and now New Crown is out! We’ve toured that through India, Europe, the US, Mexico, Russia…about 80 shows last year!”
New Crown took around 3 months to write according to Stockdale, and they were pretty quick to get the songs out to the listening public starting with the US. The album has inflections of Black Sabbath and Deep Purple, an ideal combination that Stockdale doesn’t mind being compared to, yet it remains a signature Wolfmother release true to the band’s sound and values. Undoubtedly, they too have also influenced other groups to form, and Stockdale says some of them are now playing alongside them. “ I meet bands abroad now that tell us that one of their first gigs was ours, and now they are touring with us 5-8 years down the track. I’m really stoked that I’ve been a part of the creative process that got people into it.”
Having toured the world, there’s a notable difference in audiences and what appeals to them according to Stockdale. We delve into the differences between the various shades of rock in the English speaking world and where we draw our sounds from. “Aussie rock always has a bit of English sense of humour, a bit of tongue in cheek or larrikin quality. Anti-authoritarian even. It suits rock and roll, you gotta have a bit of a fire within you to make compelling rock music. We become a bit self-deprecating as Aussies, just to stay humble. We’re brought up like that and we know we’ll get our ass kicked if we don’t stay honest.” This is a valuable conversation, and one that interests both of us as lovers of old school rock and roll. Although pop music is in abundance and appeals to a wide audience, traditional rock roots will always have a major part to play in the music industry no matter what the trends suggest. “Some people can play on the rock thing though, the whole blue collar image and theme. It doesn’t need to be that way though. Wolfmother sang about unicorns, a kind of psychedelic poetry. Australian poetry though, is strictly our own- the Banjo Patterson definition of poetry. It speaks of our past and landscape, our psyche.”
We’re opening a can of worms here according to Stockdale, and we both agree on many points regarding the Australian identity of music. Bands like AC/DC, Cold Chisel, Silverchair all brought different things to the table, yet all kept their own individuality. It’s no different for Wolfmother, who have developed their own unique brand of Australian rock. It’s hard, unpretentious, and doesn’t give a shit!
We do though, as a nation, tend to undervalue our artists in respective fields, and want to ‘reclaim’ them after they’re perceived to have made it. Well, Wolfmother certainly have and after a relentless touring schedule the boys are ready to get back into it after a 5 year break. New Crown is a solid album that puts Wolfmother back on the radar, and better still, they’re playing live around the country this year!
For Adelaide fans, they’re appearing at Groovin’ The Moo with a plethora of other great acts. Get your ears around New Crown HERE , and make sure you get up to Oakbank to see them play live at GTM – April 25 2015! http://2015.gtm.net.au/oak-home.html
By Darren Hassan
Groovin’ The Moo: http://2015.gtm.net.au/oak-home.html