Wolf Parade

Apologies to the Queen Mary
(Sub Pop)

Talk about a thrill ride. After two self-released EPs and a third out this summer on Sub Pop, Wolf Parade's anticipated debut full-length is the kind of heart-pounding, emotional roller coaster we'll gladly take again and again -- except the line to jump onboard is bound to get longer. Hailing from North America's latest indie rock capital, Montreal, the quartet is tight with hometown sensation the Arcade Fire and has the blessing of Modest Mouse front man Isaac Brock (who produced three-quarters of the tracks here). That's a lot of hipster hype to live up to, but Wolf Parade does more than elaborate on Modest Mouse's off-kilter stomp-and-swagger ("You Are a Runner and I Am My Father's Son") or the Arcade Fire's melodramatic swoon ("I'll Believe in Anything"). "Shine a Light" has a driving rhythm guitar reminiscent of the Velvet Underground's "Sister Ray"; "Fancy Claps" kicks into kinetic post-punk with strong synths and guitar; and "Dear Sons and Daughters of Hungry Ghosts" grooves with keyboardist Spencer Krug's jagged vox, à la David Bowie. Wolf Parade starts simple and quickly goes grandiose with layers of rumbling percussion, morphing pop melodies, and Hadji Bakara's swooshing, spacy electronic effects, which make a few of the songs zoom into the stratosphere. The same will surely happen to this band's career.

 
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