The new EP from UK post hardcore band Wolves smacks one right between the eyes with a devilment and aggression that is to be admired if not feared. They hold nothing back in their determination to leave senses buckling and gasping for life beneath their intensive testing and blistering aural manipulations. Alpha Beta Omega is no easy ride, it gives or shows no mercy in its thunderous violation but stand tall before its might and look within the coarse intensity and the rewards are very satisfying.
Formed in 2010, the quartet from North Wales have shared stages with the likes of The Blackout, William Control, Fei Comodo, Shadows Chasing Ghosts, Polar, Evita and Blitz Kids, impressing along the way with their far reaching intrusive sounds. So far our words give the impression it is all destructive intent but within their obliterating creations the band infuse some equally stirring acidic melodic invention, catchy grooves, and thoughtful composing that lies beneath the initial thunderous assault on the ear eagerly waiting to be discovered. Alpha Beta Omega is the follow-up to the 2011 two track release Adrienne–Lynn / Tongue Tied and with the luck all bands need could and should see Wolves becoming the name of the lips of a great many more.
The band are sneaky little tykes, the opening instrumental We Are The 99 % mesmerising the ear with nicely crafted emotive melodies and a subdued power that even with its building crescendo leaves one unprepared for the full onslaught of the following Buried. The song throws clawed riffs at the ear scarring flesh as the rhythms of drummer Tom Williams penetrate around them. The coarse shouts and growls of Ad Robinson fly with venom and great effect adding to the uncomfortable yet compelling consumption. The bass of Ben Peers comes at the listener with meaty paws swiping out with muscular pummelling riffs and belligerence. At its close a quick breath is grabbed before the EP continues the corruption.
Feral dominates just as fully as its predecessor, its tight cutting groove flipping the bird as it twists and stretches its prey with glee. Slowing to a stalking pace the song is as predatory as the band name and soon leaps upon its victim with further high energy and finely crafted unrelenting sounds.
Surviving that leaves one feeling bolder but the best song on the release soon leaves you in no doubt who is in charge. The title track is immense, from its ravenous bass riffs which rub the senses up the wrong way through to the guitars of Dan Hallows and their scorched provocative grooves and acidic melodies which leap like salt onto the open wounds, the song is majestic. The bass is the highlight, a malignant foe for the ear but everything clicks perfectly on the song and it is worth investigation of the release on its own.
When Money Speaks, The Truth Remains Silent offers a formidable challenge for top honours, the song persistently niggling and thrilling. Veering from rampage to simple torrential rage it is a pleasure to fall beneath the maliciously stomping charge of the song.
Alpha Beta Omega closes with Collapse, an emotive part ballad part expulsion of bottled up angst. The song is fine but shows the only less effective part of the release and in a way the band. Robinson is an excellent coarse delivery aggressor and decent semi smooth vocalist but he has yet to find a way to bring a clean vocal that is to the standard of the rest of his and the bands skills. It is a small aspect of what is an excellent release but it is noticeable though one can feel and hear it is something that is being worked on.
Wolves are a band on a quick rise something the impressive Alpha Beta Omega will only accelerate. The time to join the ride is now before there is a queue for the attentions of what could be one of the mightiest post hardcore bands to come out of the UK yet.