Thursday, 8 November 2012

The Wolfhounds: Cheer Up

The Wolfhounds were on the C86 compilation before C86 became a metonym for indiepop and metadata for greedy ebay vendors. The Wolfhounds, then, were indie back when that meant being on the outside, only they were even more on the outside than their contemporaries.

They were always too raucous to be indiepop and always too pop to be awkward rock. If those two dominant styles on the C86 compilation had a meeting point, it was The Wolfhounds. This should have meant that The Wolfhounds were part of everything but it actually meant that they weren’t easily classifiable, hence never quite got picked up by enough people.

I suspect they hold a certain disdain for C86, which is why when they returned 6 years ago to the ICA for the C86 anniversary gig they turned up the volume so fucking loud. They were making a point they didn’t belong, when of course they never did. They would, back in the 80s and early 90s, have been more at home in the USA, perhaps on Homestead or SST, than on the outside of any British scenes.

In 2012 The Wolfhounds don’t belong on the revival circuit, so this new single is very welcome. From the sledgehammer bass, sardonic lyric and awkward melodic kick of Cheer Up you know this is a good return. Security is stronger still; it reminds me of The Anti-Midas Touch which itself reminds me that no band ever really followed up what The Wolfhounds did. This, then, is unfinished business.

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