The almost pop beginning of Wand’s third album 1000 Days could initially have you thinking they’ve had a serious change of musical direction in the brief number of months that have passed since the release of Golem earlier this year. The weighty riffs that we’ve come to know and love are though still there, just married up with a bit of shinier production and more psychedelic elements than on previous releases. They’ve also expanded out to fit in a dozen songs so there’s not really any room for complaint.
In point of fact the band have rather gone down the road that Ty Segall & Mikal Cronin occasionally travel when they lower the fuzz quotient in their output and fancy being a bit fey. Quality-wise there’s on the whole no dip and they show that they can amply handle what could be termed a more mature sound palate and ape Tyrannosaurus Rex with the best of them.
Where the greatest differences between the band’s first albums and 1000 Days lies is in the pace. Things get slowed right down on the likes of ‘Broken Sun’ and the title title track as the aim is for something momentous rather than a ground-level assault on the senses. ‘Lower Order’ and other songs do though, at least musically, aim to get in at the front door to give you the kind of shoving about that you’d normally expect to undergo.
The album’s one mis-step is the ethereal, pseudo-tribal instrumental ‘Dovetail’. Whether it would come over better if placed elsewhere in the running order (either right at the start or right at the end) is debatable but stuck in the middle of the album it does little other than interrupt the flow.
A move forward then from Wand (unsurprising really given the inventiveness they clearly possess) and one that they pull off with no causes for concern or signs of running out of steam. Unlike Kennedy 1000 Days is not going to be the end of them.
1000 Days is available from amazon and iTunes.