Wildildlife and Goliath Bird Eater at the Smell

Just got back from seeing Wildildlife (yep, that’s the spelling) at the Smell.  My house is often the crash-pad for visiting bands coming through L.A., and for some reason, these guys have already been in town a time or two and stayed with me without my ever getting to see them live or knowing what the actual band sounded like (they’re actually friends of the girlfriend, ya see).

I finally fixed that problem at the Smell tonight, and I was more than impressed.  The trio’s sound is steeped in doom and speed metal, but bassist Andy also plays a giant Taurus II Moog bass pedal thingie (it looks like the big foot-played notes you’d see beside the volume pedal on a church organ) with his feet to add atmospheric sounds, kinda like Hawkwind meets Slayer–but with classic echo-drenched vocal style reminiscent of Maiden, Priest, or the ancient shaman-warlocks, ensnared by ancient lightning bolts in their mountain halls, who sing from their minarets of ice to call in the Yetis. 

Andy sang lead, but all three guys sang at least on a song or two, and they all play tight, with energy and style–and yet somehow the guitarist can run around in the crowd flailing himself back and forth like Angus Young without the outfit and duckwalk.  Here’s a bit of a performance from a few months’ back–tonight was pretty much the same deal as this, except played even better! 

Too bad there wasn’t much of a crowd tonight, but Wildildlife are gonna be in Austin soon for SXSW, so check ’em out.

Also on the line-up was tonight Goliath Bird Eater, which due to a last-minute drummer drop-out consisted of Bobb Bruno playing guitar all by his lonesome, accompanied only by some well-crafted impromptu effects and drum machines!  It was still a full sound (Bobb’s talents as a one-man band have been chronicled here before, because he’s fucking rad), so I didn’t realize that the lack of a drummer was unintentional.  Apparently Bobb’s playing this Friday at the Smell with Ariel Pink and some other kids, so go watch him.


Oklahoman by birth. Angeleno by fate. I've been in half a dozen bands and own 25 cubic feet of old records. Thank God for Ikea shelves.

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