In October of last year Australian rock band, Wolfmother, released a special tenth anniversary pressing of their debut eponymous album. Inside the case was a small flyer announcing the production of their newest album, Victorious.
In the months following the announcement, the band released three singles, “City Lights,” “Gypsy Caravan,” and “Victorious.” Hearing these three tracks was exciting, especially after their last, frankly disappointing album, New Crown. Where New Crown sounded like an amateur garage band making a hastily put together and unfinished album, Victorious brought back Wolfmother’s credibility with a bang.
This new album proves that the group has found their groove again after their “hiatus” and frontman, Andrew Stockdale, rebranding the group as a solo project under his name with his 2013 effort Keep Moving, and the change back to the Wolfmother name for the 2014 album, New Crown. Fans of the band might say that Victorious is the first real Wolfmother album since the 2009 release of Cosmic Egg.
The album begins, in classic Wolfmother fashion, with a sharp jump into the first track, “The Love That You Give.”
The album then segues into “Victorious,” which is, appropriately, the titular song on the album. It perfectly encapsulates the tone and stands as the face of the entire album. The song is a perfect balance of both old and new from Wolfmother’s catalogue. The song has specific callbacks to “Pyramid” on their first album, while still managing to be something bold and new.
“Baroness” is far and away the best track on the album, expertly blending power and elegance. The rhythm guitar and drums create a solid, steady base, while the chorus and lead guitar allow the song to flow smoothly from start to finish. The song tells the story of a boy who “lives with the peasantry” falling in love with a girl that “lives with the higher class,” and his fight to prove his love to her. This is definitely the highlight of the album, and is worthy of repeat listening.
A track later in the album, “Simple Life,” showcases Wolfmother’s earlier influences like Deep Purple, pre-Dio Black Sabbath, and AC/DC in the Bon Scott days, while managing to flaunt their own distinctive sound. The pace of “Simple Life” is steady and hard, dragging the listener along whether they want it or not.
Overall, Victorious, is a welcome addition to Wolfmother’s musical catalogue, and stands with few negative qualities. However, standing at only just over 35 minutes, Victorious feels short and leaves the listener wanting more.
Victorious is now available for purchase through iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, and the band’s website http://www.wolfmother.com.