Wolfmother Turns It Up to 11 over Two Nights

November 10th, 2009

Wolfmother – Music Hall of Williamsburg – November 9, 2009

Wolfmother - Terminal 5 - November 8, 2009

What was it your mother told you about making a good first impression? Wolfmother learned that lesson well, opening their show at Music Hall of Williamsburg with an eight-minute “Dimension”—an explosion of guitar and falsetto, machine-gun drums and bass. What was it your mother said about playing with matches? The band wasn’t quite as good with that one, throwing flame at the dry tinder of the audience. Never mind that it was a Monday night, it took about 30 seconds for the jacked-up, sold-out crowd to turn into a flailing mosh pit.

From there it was just a matter of playing with fire. Wolfmother leaned heavily on new material but strategically placed songs from the debut album throughout. Of course, these got the greatest reaction, with the crowd taking them in like an intravenous hit of an adrenaline-testosterone cocktail. These tunes were a bit more developed with long, pyrotechnic guitar sections and psychedelic breakdowns. Frontman Andrew Stockdale seemed to be able to flip a switch and turn a formless blob of volume and speed into a coherent sound at will. Never mind a lineup change or two, the band was tight and at his beck and call.

When the band hit “Woman” midset, the crowd and band merged with a crazy intensity, crowd-surfing, stage-diving and the whole lot. This was no video game. Stockdale joked about being warned that the Brooklyn crowd would just stand there, arms crossed, asking, “What have you got?” but the reality was kinetic craziness. Ending the set with a spacey “White Unicorn,” the volume maxed-out to the red, blowing a hole right onto N. 6th St. —A. Stein

Wolfmother – Terminal 5 – November 8, 2009

Photos courtesy of Michael Weintrob | www.michaelweintrob.com