Archive for “1000 Days”

Years Later, Will Thousands Claim They Were At Wand’s Show At The Black Cat?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on November 16, 2015 by johnbuckley100

Wand 1

About three times as many people claim they were at Nirvana’s winter ’91 show at the old 930 Club as could possibly have fit in that skanky room.  Last night, not too many of us were privileged to have been in the backroom of the Black Cat to see Wand, a band that thunders every bit as much as their precursors, while sharing their genius for melody and that genre-busting tightrope walk between metal and pop.  The 70-minute show was at times transcendent.

A year is a long time in pop music, but was it really just last fall that we saw Wand open for Ty Segall, leading us to discover their remarkably accomplished debut, Ganglion Reef?  Since then — all in calendar year 2015 — the band has released two new albums, each better than the last one, a progression of talent that shows great things to come.

The band is now a foursome, so that Cory Hanson has extra help on keyboards and guitar.  As the singer and principal guitarist, the clean-cut Hanson cuts a fascinating figure.  It’s fully to be expected to find him on a stage, but he looks less like someone who can ply the line between noise-rock and Power Pop than someone you’d see on a tech conference panel being grilled by Kara Swisher on why his start-up’s billion-dollar valuation is justified. Wand plays pretty melodies that stick in your head and then, on a dime, they pivot to chest-jarring fuzz-metal.  As the bandleader, Hanson seems as if at any moment he could turn and walk through a different door, and you’d find yourself listening to music in a completely different tempo, volume, and level of intensity.

Wand 2

But no take on Wand is complete without mentioning that Evan Burrows is a one-man nuclear power plant piston-pounding the drums. If drummers had world rankings like tennis players do, Burrows would be that phenom that went from number 128 to the Top 5 in a single season.  This is evident on the records, manifest live.

We have already stated our dilemma in determining which of Wand’s 2015 records will make Tulip Frenzy’s 2015 Top 10 List.  And honestly, we wish we could call 1000 Days and Golem a double album and be done with it.  But something else came to mind last night when watching this intimate show in which Wand just detonated on stage.  Hanson reportedly was Mikal Cronin’s roommate in LA, and Ty Segall has taken the younger tyro under his ample wing.  In the summer of 2014, Tulip Frenzy declared that we live in a Golden Age of Rock’n’Roll due to the output and sensibilities of Ty, Thee Oh Sees’ John Dwyer, and White Fence’s Tim Presley, and last’s night show by Wand simply confirmed the thesis.  But what also was clear that any listing of West Coast bands and figures leading us to this Periclean age has to include Wand and Cory Hanson.  Those of us who were privileged to be at the Black Cat last night know this.  And we fully expect that a decade from now, hundreds of DC hipsters will claim they were there too, and have known this all the while.

The Only Question Is Which Of Wand’s Two 2015 Albums Will Make Tulip Frenzy’s Top 10 List

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on October 1, 2015 by johnbuckley100

When we saw Wand open for Ty Segall just over a year ago, we marveled at their potent combination of sludge and Power Pop.  We knew that Cory Hanson was a promising songwriter, a great singer, and as a guitarist was cut from the same Jolly Rogers jib as his mentor.  Drummer Evan Burrows brought this manic Keith Moon presence to the alternately gooey and hyper-speed proceedings, and the bass player… the bass player was the fulcrum around which these two tyros twisted.

We had no idea, though, listening to Wand’s excellent debut, Ganglion Reef, that barely one year later, they would have not only their sophomore release out, but they’d have crammed in enough credits to release a third album and in record speed ace junior year.

Golem came out in March, 1000 Days last Friday, and between the two of them, one easily could cull a single Album of The Year.  Any year.  It could be 1975 and we’re listening to Pink Floyd, 1990 and we’re listening to the Smashing Pumpkins, or 2010 and we’re simultaneously grokking on Ty and Tame Impala.  These are rough coordinates for these guys: they play with the power of Ty in his melodic punk incarnation, can turn on a dime into Prog, and can just melt metal til it’s goo.  Whereas before we could identify them by their chums — Hanson may be a Ty Segal protege, but he was also Mikael Cronin’s housemate.  These days we may as well throw in the whole West Coast gang — let’s add the Thee Oh Sees and White Fence, too, and declare: these guys are no one’s apprentice, they are now said musical giants’ peers.

The new one is the poppier of the two 2015 releases.  Sure, it thunders like Niagara when it needs to.  But there is genuine craftsmanship to the chops, the sonic values upend the old advertising come on: in space, everyone can hear you scream.

We don’t know what the judges are going say about how many recs by the same band can be considered for the Tulip Frenzy 2015 Top Ten List.  Watch this space.

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