Werewolves, zombies, and … Clint Eastwood? It all adds up to: “I Just Wanna Have a Good Time.” (Brian Lambert) Allow me to explain. As we roll into October’s celebratory amalgamation known as Halloween, those three things bound to stoke our spooky imaginations. Alright maybe Eastwood could be debatable (albeit he creeps me out, personally).
Nevertheless! For purposes of writing this review, I am not actually referring to a Spaghetti Western Poncho-wearing cowboy (even though Google clearly states that is still a “go-to” for a Halloween costume). No. I’m actually referring to the band Gorrillaz. Allow me to explain further. The friendly neighborhood rock and roller Brian Lambert of Denton, Texas has unleashed the beast, so to speak, with his latest album “Wild” (released September 22nd).
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As such, his cover of the Gorillaz song “Clint Eastwood” is indeed one of the most notable and well-received tracks on the record. Insomuch as the Gorillaz version having well over 700 million streams, I’m going to run with the assumption that we’ve all seen the video by now and have made the “Halloween vibes” connection. Brian Lambert, outwardly a fan of the horror movie genre, has been counting down the days to Halloween on social media for the last couple of months in anticipation of releasing this album.
The drop emits a cool, spooky, and rocking good time. Ready for the hot take? “Wild” is so much more than an underlying horror-flick-concept album. All aforementioned things are true, don’t get me wrong, but this album is front-to-back a masterfully written production and a pinnacle, if not the pinnacle, of his musical catalog. And remember, this is an artist that embarked on a 52-week Music Production challenge at one point, releasing a song every week for a year. That alone, is a massive repertoire to speak of.
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Of particular note, the title track itself “Wild” strikes a chord with me. On the surface, it’s a song about a werewolf. The chord progression and song when stripped down is similar to a Nirvana-esque melody. A great example of this can be found on a version of the song that was released on “Auto Matic Im Perfect” – an exclusive Bandcamp release.
Lyrically, there is a dual expression being conveyed about being “cursed” (in the literal sense as a werewolf) but finding solace in the freedom of being wild. When thinking about the double meaning and just wrapping my head around the idea that a werewolf is a double life, as the story is traditionally told, the overall concept of the song to me is quite brilliant.
A chef’s kiss, if you will, in the artistic department. Musically, it’s remarkable to see the progression between the acoustic Bandcamp version and the official release on streaming platforms. Lambert took a song that felt like a 90s band “unplugged” and recharged the dynamics drastically in the official release, adding Roky Erikson-like lead guitar licks and haunting harmonies to the choruses courtesy of singer/songwriter Harmoni Kelly (who also contributed bass guitar to the official track).
The album honestly does not have any “skippable” tracks along the way. Which, as if it didn’t already have enough musical prowess from several angles, almost makes it feel like a Rock Opera in a sense. One of those records meant to be listened to front to back for the entire journey.
Lambert also does an interesting take on a Nirvana cover of the song “Breed” on this album. His approach to that song, which in a historical context is a manic rocker Cobain would often fall to the floor in fits of rage while performing, takes on a hip, alternative vibe, almost as if it was performed by the Violent Femmes.
Lambert’s take on musical approach, philosophy, and reflection is also something many that connect with his music find captivating. Tune in this week on Friday (the 13th – how iconic/ironic is that) for part one of a two-part series on my Radio Show/ Podcast “Sound Perspectives” (airing on NAS Radio at 5am / 4pm EST) for an interview with the eclectic Brian Lambert. And enjoy the “Wild” ride.
Don’t forget to support this project and follow Brian Lambert on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, SoundCloud, YouTube, Apple Music, and Spotify. You can also visit his official website. If you enjoy this music and can provide monetary support, you might consider downloading it on Bandcamp.
It also helps to stream and share their music; you can find it in the following Playlists: Less Than 1,000 Followers, Fresh Singles, Indie Only, Alterindie State Of Mind, Sickest & Dopest, and Unknown But Essentials!
Remember that you can always find me here AMS Radio for all my social media and collaborations.
P.S. If you enjoy discovering new artists and brand-new music, subscribe to this blog Less Than 1,000 Followers, and follow the Playlist with all the artists we have presented here!
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This coverage was createdvia Musosoup #sustainablecurator