Release Date: Sep 25, 2015
Record label: Drag City
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Garage Punk, Alternative Metal, Heavy Metal, Neo-Psychedelia, Noise-Rock
Head here to submit your own review of this album. Three albums in thirteen months is a huge ask for any band - but for Wand it seems like they're already ready for their fourth. Over the course of 'ganglion relief' and 'golem' they set out their prototype - picking up the sound that Black Sabbath and the likes made popular and sticking it out in the desert.
The guys in Wand are a prolific bunch. 1000 Days is their third album in a year, following their weirdo psych debut Ganglion Reef and the more heavy metal-influenced Golem. This time out, the L.A. band blends the tricky psych and heavy metal into something more organic, adding keyboards and electronics in the process.
Searing synths signal the opening of the gatefold doors to 1000 Days, a record that creates and embodies a world of its own. Wand's second release of the year may have dropped with limited fanfare, but those who seek out and venture into the soaring psychedelics of the new album find themselves in a landscape of rich tapestries and luscious melodies. Removed from the expansive instrument-led sounds of previous records Ganglion Reef and Golem, 1000 Days immerses inwards.
Wand's third full-length in just over a year cements their reputation as one of America's most prolific and exciting new psychedelic acts. It's also their most accessible work to date, moving forward from 2014's Ganglion Reef and early 2015's Golem with a more confident, song-oriented strut. 1000 Days swings wildly from Black Sabbath-style paranoia to delicate Van Dyke Parks weirdness with an increasingly erudite command of garage rock while still managing to maintain much of the enigmatic charm of their previous releases.
1000 Days is Wand’s 3rd LP, and it’s arrived just 13 months after their first. The enthusiasm and impulsion that has led to such a prolific output of albums is a trait that’s mirrored in their music – a brand of garage and psychedelica that is progressive almost by accident, more of a symptom of their spontaneity rather than a conscious feature of their blueprint. Accidental or not, the progressive nature of Wand allow them to completely reshape their influences, mutating a wide range of resemblances into intriguing, rare entities.
On their third album, Los Angeles’ Wand gracefully sidestep the potential pitfalls of psychedelic songwriting—meandering guitars, rambling lyrics, directionless tracks. They ground the blurry, bizarre visions established on their previous efforts, Ganglion Reef and Golem, in colorful imagery, so that the faces of the monsters they’ve written about on past records come into full focus. While the shadow of Wand’s mentor Ty Segall still hovers over Wand’s blown-out garage sound, the band’s own flickering light is beginning to shine through more often.
1000 Days is the third album by Wand, their debut arrived August of last year and a follow up soon after in March of this year. They’re prolific, that’s certain, a trait befitting a group that’s labelmates with Ty Segall. While at its heart a garage rock record, Wand has added some extra texture to this LP with the addition of a synthesizer. The synth is a welcome addition, they add some really lovely sonic details and allow Wand to be a little experimental.
Whatever is in Wand’s water supply is clearly doing wonders for their creativity. 1000 Days is the band’s third album in 13 months, and incredibly the quality of their output is showing no signs of waning at all. Just how many albums the band will see fit to release in a 1,000 day timeframe is anybody’s guess, but there’s no point in wasting the inspiration when it strikes.
It seems that California prog-rockers Wand have been on a quest to find themselves. In the past year, the band released two different albums on two different record labels — Ganglion Reef on GOD? and Golem on In The Red. Now, the group drop their third and newest effort, 1000 Days, via Chicago-based label Drag City.Where Ganglion Reef shone with sunny textures and Golem was all glammed-up psychedelia, 1000 Days combines the two while applying the simple structures of 1960s and 1970s British rock'n'roll.
Wand didn’t need to release another album in 2015. Back in March, the LA band dropped Golem, an apocalyptic pop opus that was received warmly by both the underground garage-psych scene and heavy-headed psych metal dudes. That record’s low end rivals the quaking bass of doom bands like Yob, but Cory Hanson’s vocals and songcraft fall more in line with the John Lennon school, not unlike fellow Cali neo-psych stalwarts Ty Segall and Tim Presley.
Is it possible to make and release three strong full-length albums in just over a year? Los Angeles four-piece Wand have done exactly that with 1,000 Days, their third since last August and first for Drag City. While March release Golem went heavy and ugly - in an interview with NOW, frontman Cory wanHanson called it "kind of swollen and gross and pussing, like some gross bog" - 1,000 Days has a lighter touch and more cosmic-garage synthesizers and rudimentary electronic beats. Hanson artfully pits his airy vocals and kaleidoscopic harmonies (there's a pronounced Kinks vibe) against thick, sludgy guitar riffs and crashing drums.
When I was 12 I found a copy of The Key of Solomon The King at a New Age bookstore. The book is a medieval grimoire filled with complicated rituals for conjuring demons and decorated with magnificent sigils. Soon after, just as I was discovering my erotic self, I came across David Bowie's Diamond Dogs and played it obsessively. Please, if you would, imagine that bespectacled stringy-haired 12-year old wannabee wizard with a perpetual boner poring over the names of demons and their attendant seals while 'Chant Of The Ever-Circling Skeletal Family' plays over and over again and you will know all you need to about the quality of my imagination and why Wand's new album 1000 Days hits my nostalgic sweet spot.