The Wombats

The Wombats are a band out of Liverpool, England.  They have some great tunes.  I spent the summer of 2009 learning the lyrics to pretty much every one of their songs.  They’re a fresh sounding band that brings punk, pop, and rock together for a terrific sound.  Their lyrics are pretty racy and touch on the usual rock and roll things like chicks,  sex, and partying.  The lyrics and accompanying sound provide a crystal clear view into raw human emotion.  To me, their music basically says: we have nothing to hide and here is our art and our truth – love it or leave it.  And that is my favorite kind of music: raw humanism.  That kind of passion usually takes a little while to catch on with the masses, but once it does, it usually goes viral.

The Wombats started jamming together in 2003 when they met at the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts (LIPA).  They released their first album in 2006 titled Girls, Boys and Marsupials (Japan only) and have since released in 2007:  The Wombats Go Pop Pop Pop (Japan only) and The Wombats Proudly Present: A Guide to Love, Loss & Desperation.  So, I would say they really didn’t start to gain noteriety until 2007.  I’m disappointed that it took two years of them gaining popularity before I stumbled across them here in Detroit using my “panning for music” technique.  It’s a shame because they’ve received absolutely zero radio play in Detroit as of January 2010.  Usually the Detroit music scene is pretty tight but a lot of times good talent doesn’t arrive here until the corporate mathematics justify it which is entirely too sad.

This band consists of three members:  Matthew Murphy (lead vocals / keyboard / guitar),  Dan Haggis (percussion / vocals), and Tord Øverland-Knudsen (bass / vocals).  The three usually all do vocals on most songs.  This gives their music a larger sound than that of most three member bands.  The beats are mix of disco / pop / alternative / rock.   As I already mentioned, some of the lyrics are a little bit racy, but they will catch on in time.  There acceptance here in the US will be most likely more like the Kings of Leon.  The K.O.L were jamming for a long time with some sweet hardcore tunes and were virtually unnoticed.  Then, one day (overnight it seems) they were a success and they get more radio play on the pop stations than alternative and rock stations – which is still weird to me.

Let’s hope that The Wombats come on the scene better than that of the K.O.L.  I’d hate to see them get hijacked by the lame stations.  But, their forthcoming world-wide success is almost preordained in my humble opinion.  A band that rocks like this won’t stay under the radar for long.  If you haven’t heard any of their music yet and want to check them out, you might want to start with:  “Let’s Dance to Joy Division” and “Moving to New York”.  If you fall in love with those two songs like I did, you might find their whole (but small as of now) library quite impressive.

Rock on.

UPDATE:
August 16, 2012
I’m driving down 8 Mile toward Grand River in heavy traffic because of construction. The radio is tuned to 89X. The DJ says “Here’s the new one from The Wombats. You can catch The Wombats live in Lansing September 8th and Pontiac September 21st“.  I was trippin.  Didn’t know if they’d ever make it across the pond for sure, and here they are.   They even have “people” updating their website now.  Their website used to totally be done by the band, you could just tell; very artistic and obscure with little sketches and poems.  I should have cached that site now that I think back to it.  It was not conducive to promoting events and providing details like dates & times.  Now it’s totally done by “people”.   So, I’m very happy for the band that they’re garnering some success in the cut-throat music industry.

I’m trying very hard to get my friend Coy out of the woodwork to go see them with me in Lansing on the 8th.  They’re playing at The Loft which is a sweet venue.  It only holds 400 people which is the best way to see a band – up close and personal.   It’s nice to be able to see a band that you think is going to be pretty big some day when you can see them up close and personal.   My friend Coy and I went out to St. Andrew’s Hall years back to see a new band called Nickelback.   We made it up to the mosh pit line and watched them rock it out right up in front of the stage.   I don’t listen to Nickelback much anymore barely at all, but it’s neat to have seen them in a small venue because they’re selling out The Palace now for two and three nights in a row when they come through town.  I wish the same success for The Wombats.  If I can make it out to Lansing next month, I’ll have to take some pictures and write a post…

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