Hour of the Wolf - Obsolete (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Hour of the Wolf

Obsolete (2009)

Hellfish Family

If you've enjoyed anything you've heard from them before, you have no real reason not to like the latest entry in Hour of the Wolf's parade of annual EPs. Obsolete is yet another condensed crunch of the band's dirty punk 'n' roll littered with Flag-style hardcore grooves.

Admittedly, there seems to be a slight progression here that involves a little more melody and garage punk swagger à la, say, Hot Snakes. There's ripping slices of guitar work in "Age of Nothing," which comes off more confident and snappy than much of what the band's previously laid to tape. But there's also an awesome early L.A. hardcore vibe to "Bloodstains"--I'm thinking Adolescents, really--while closer "Cowards and Critics" gets on an aggressive propulsion with succumbing to any sort of cheesy rock 'n' roll feel. Really, though, Obsolete manages this feat finely through its entire course.

This just might be Hour of the Wolf's finest slab of tracks to date even as they continue to refine and restrain. They're pulling out the qualities that sound best, and if a full-length is next the timing would be perfect as they're really honing it well now.

Heart Failure