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Rating:
9.0
Wo Fat - The Conjuring
17 June 2014


01. The Conjuring
02. Read The Omens
03. Pale Rider From The Ice
04. Beggar's Bargain
05. Dreamwalker


So yeah man, there's like, this band called Wo Fat, and they've been playing some heavy grooves for a good time now dude.

The Americans in Wo Fat play psychedelic stoner metal at some of its absolute best. Their fifth album, The Conjuring, sees them utilizing more or less the same formula as before, but don't let that repetition fool you, because this is definitely an "if it aint broke, don't fix it" type of deal. With Wo Fat, crunchy, pulsing riffage flies around you in all directions: catchy, fun, and head bob-inducing (such as on "Read The Omens"). The vocals of Kent Stump, especially, bring to mind some thoughts of early Electric Wizard, and definitely have a "classic" stoner sound to them.

Of course, what really makes Wo Fat the potent trio they are though lies in their delicate attention to pouring some tasty psychedelia into their mix. Whether it's the Monster Magnet-like spacey effects or the minimalist style of the guitar leads that borrows heavily from classic acid rock (see the ones towards the end of "Dreamwalker" in particular), this side of Wo Fat's personality really helps to add another dimension to the music of The Conjuring, making it much more than just your typical stoner jam. The production during such moments is spot on as well, oozing with a ton of fuzz and other layering effects to help to nail that free-flowing, atmospheric sound.

Wo Fat have demonstrated time and again their ability to weave catchy grooves with some more dreamy undertones, and The Conjuring is certainly no exception. Hearing this album reminds me in some ways of the Domovoyd debut last year. That is, it's stoner metal, but laced with a good degree of some trippier elements, that call back to the early days of L.A., the Summer Of Love, and some of the very origins that inspired this sort of music in the first place, helping to give the album a very timeless feel. Being a huge fan of classic acid rock, it's great to know that more modern stoner bands are starting to incorporate some of its legacies into their sounds, and Wo Fat are an excellent example. Definitely has my vote thus far for stoner AOTY.

Turn it on, tune it in, drop it out.

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 7
Production: 10


Band profile: Wo Fat
Album: The Conjuring


 



Written on 07.08.2014 by
Apothecary
Your friend the witch doctor.
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LiquidSmoke - 07.08.2014 at 16:35  
Wo Fat have been consistently good and this album continues the trend. I guess it wouldn't be too far of a stretch to consider it AOTY for its category right now, but I don't see that happening after the year is done. They've never been ahead of the pack so to speak. Good review btw!
Karlabos - 07.08.2014 at 16:38  
Is the name of the band a reference to Wo Momma?
Apothecary - 07.08.2014 at 16:41  
Written by LiquidSmoke on 07.08.2014 at 16:35

I guess it wouldn't be too far of a stretch to consider it AOTY for its category right now, but I don't see that happening after the year is done.

Hmm, any other planned releases you think will top it?
!J.O.O.E.! - 07.08.2014 at 16:44  
Artwork made me think of this.

Zaphod - 07.08.2014 at 17:09  
Gonna check it. Been getting a lot more into stoner lately.
Ilham - 07.08.2014 at 17:18  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 07.08.2014 at 16:44

Artwork made me think of this.

Yes I was looking for that one. I am sure a good number of metal covers are inspired by Beksinski.
!J.O.O.E.! - 07.08.2014 at 17:22  
Written by Ilham on 07.08.2014 at 17:18

Yes I was looking for that one. I am sure a good number of metal covers are inspired by Beksinski.

Yeah, influenced in this case perhaps, rather than just using his art for covers outright like too many bands do.
Troy Killjoy - 07.08.2014 at 17:44  
Agreed with everything in the review even though I'd score it a full point lower. I think this is their weakest album since their debut, but it's still great.
Apothecary - 07.08.2014 at 18:23  
Written by Troy Killjoy on 07.08.2014 at 17:44

Agreed with everything in the review even though I'd score it a full point lower. I think this is their weakest album since their debut, but it's still great.

Yeah, it's definitely 8 material, at the very least.
Apothecary - 07.08.2014 at 18:24  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 07.08.2014 at 16:44

Artwork made me think of this.

I am unfamiliar with this Beksinski guy
!J.O.O.E.! - 07.08.2014 at 18:27  
Written by Apothecary on 07.08.2014 at 18:24

I am unfamiliar with this Beksinski guy

I can't tell if you're being serious or pulling me up on my lazy spelling of Beksiński.
LiquidSmoke - 07.08.2014 at 18:27  
Written by Apothecary on 07.08.2014 at 16:41

Written by LiquidSmoke on 07.08.2014 at 16:35

I guess it wouldn't be too far of a stretch to consider it AOTY for its category right now, but I don't see that happening after the year is done.

Hmm, any other planned releases you think will top it?

These are the releases this year that I prefer so far (though I still jam the fuck out of the new Wo Fat too don't get me wrong):

Jeremy Irons and the Ratgang Malibus: http://smallstone.bandcamp.com/album/spirit-knife

The Vintage Caravan: http://thevintagecaravan.bandcamp.com/album/voyage

Child: http://childtheband.bandcamp.com/

Moon Coven: http://mooncoven.bandcamp.com/

and finally this was released last year but I really think any stoner rock afficionado should listen to All Them Witches: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eC6O4OlHE8Q

Hope you enjoy
Cheers!
!J.O.O.E.! - 07.08.2014 at 18:34  
Written by LiquidSmoke on 07.08.2014 at 18:27

Jeremy Irons and the Ratgang Malibus

Definitely a great record this one.
Apothecary - 07.08.2014 at 18:36  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 07.08.2014 at 18:27

I can't tell if you're being serious or pulling me up on my lazy spelling of Beksiński.

Honestly don't know him
Apothecary - 07.08.2014 at 18:37  
Written by LiquidSmoke on 07.08.2014 at 18:27

These are the releases this year that I prefer so far...

Yeah, Vintage Caravan are definitely great. Saw em at Roadburn and they're even better live.
!J.O.O.E.! - 07.08.2014 at 18:41  
Written by Apothecary on 07.08.2014 at 18:36

Honestly don't know him

Wow, really? I'm surprised. As someone for a penchant for the surreal, art included, I thought you would have picked up on the name. I thought he wasn't far off the popularity of Giger. In metal circles at least.

He was a prolific Polish artist whose artwork is quite often nabbed for metal artwork. You'll probably recognise a few of these. He's got a thread on here too. Needless to say he was pretty amazing.
Apothecary - 07.08.2014 at 18:47  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 07.08.2014 at 18:41

He was a prolific Polish artist whose artwork is quite often nabbed for metal artwork.

Yep, I recognize that one that Bong used for Stoner Rock, as well as this one, although I can't remember where I saw it before. Cool stuff man.
!J.O.O.E.! - 07.08.2014 at 18:49  
Written by Apothecary on 07.08.2014 at 18:47

Yep, I recognize that one that Bong used for Stoner Rock, as well as this one, although I can't remember where I saw it before. Cool stuff man.

I can't seem to remember many bands who've used artwork of his for some reason, but Leviathan and Evoken definitely have. He gets around, art wise.
LiquidSmoke - 07.08.2014 at 19:01  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 07.08.2014 at 18:34

Written by LiquidSmoke on 07.08.2014 at 18:27

Jeremy Irons and the Ratgang Malibus

Definitely a great record this one.

Tell me about it. I've been listening to it on the weekly (at the very least) ever since I discovered it back some time in may.
LiquidSmoke - 07.08.2014 at 19:02  
Written by Apothecary on 07.08.2014 at 18:37

Written by LiquidSmoke on 07.08.2014 at 18:27

These are the releases this year that I prefer so far...

Yeah, Vintage Caravan are definitely great. Saw em at Roadburn and they're even better live.

Jealous. That must have been wild.
Alex Fenger - 07.08.2014 at 22:13  
Written by Apothecary on 07.08.2014 at 18:47

Yep, I recognize that one that Bong used for Stoner Rock, as well as this one, although I can't remember where I saw it before. Cool stuff man.

He's the single best artist ever in my opinion
Apothecary - 07.08.2014 at 22:50  
Written by Alex Fenger on 07.08.2014 at 22:13

He's the single best artist ever in my opinion

Uhhh, does the name Salvador Dali mean anything to you?
Ilham - 07.08.2014 at 22:57  
Written by Alex Fenger on 07.08.2014 at 22:13
He's the single best artist ever in my opinion
This is dragging it off-topic, but I'm reconsidering our friendship now.

I only listened to their debut, which I like. With a rating this high, I might be inclined to listen to it soon. I can only picture the bad guy in that shitty show, Hawai Five O, every time I read about them. I wonder if there's a connection.
Apothecary - 08.08.2014 at 06:47  
Written by Ilham on 07.08.2014 at 22:57

This is dragging it off-topic

That's what happens when Joe comments on something
deadone - 08.08.2014 at 07:47  
Band names sounds like a morbidly obese rapper.

p
Michaelis - 08.08.2014 at 12:41  
Written by LiquidSmoke on 07.08.2014 at 18:27

Written by Apothecary on 07.08.2014 at 16:41

Written by LiquidSmoke on 07.08.2014 at 16:35

I guess it wouldn't be too far of a stretch to consider it AOTY for its category right now, but I don't see that happening after the year is done.

Hmm, any other planned releases you think will top it?

These are the releases this year that I prefer so far (though I still jam the fuck out of the new Wo Fat too don't get me wrong):

Jeremy Irons and the Ratgang Malibus: http://smallstone.bandcamp.com/album/spirit-knife

The Vintage Caravan: http://thevintagecaravan.bandcamp.com/album/voyage

Child: http://childtheband.bandcamp.com/

Moon Coven: http://mooncoven.bandcamp.com/

and finally this was released last year but I really think any stoner rock afficionado should listen to All Them Witches: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eC6O4OlHE8Q

Hope you enjoy
Cheers!


Great stuff. Thanks.

Btw - In my country, the whole thing about Beksiński family its still mysterious. Nobody is sure who killed that guy. Like my girlfriend says "Beksiński family? They're fucked up. All of them"
Beksiński wife? Cancer. Son of Beksiński? Fake his own death, later suicide. Beksiński himself? Murdered (stabbed: 17 thrusts).
He had dramatic family life, but that make him a great artist.
Troy Killjoy - 08.08.2014 at 17:11  
Written by deadone on 08.08.2014 at 07:47
Band names sounds like a morbidly obese rapper.

Maybe if they were called Dead Wo Fat...

I mean no disrespect, Matty.
Ilham - 08.08.2014 at 17:17  
Actually, I just looked it up. I was right. I was right. They did take their name after the bad guy in Hawaii Five O.
Erik M. - 08.08.2014 at 22:49  
Written by Ilham on 07.08.2014 at 22:57

With a rating this high, I might be inclined to listen to it soon.


No offence to Che, but sometimes he ends up disagreeing with his own review scores. Like in case of the most recent Summoning and The Ruins of Beverast. My point is that this 9.0 score might very well drop to an 8.0 at a certain point.

Anyway, since this is stoner metal, I probably won't like it a whole lot. Might still check it out though, since your review does get me a little bit interested in it.
Ilham - 08.08.2014 at 23:27  
Written by Erik M. on 08.08.2014 at 22:49

No offence to Che, but sometimes he ends up disagreeing with his own review scores. Like in case of the most recent Summoning and The Ruins of Beverast. My point is that this 9.0 score might very well drop to an 8.0 at a certain point.
Well, even if a review is subjective, I'm sure he must have tried to be accurate with his rating, at least a little. I don't pay attention to people's voting habits, so I don't really know what a nine means to Che, so, for now, it's enough to get me excited about an album. Of course I pay attention to what's in the review more than the rating. All in all, what I want to say is, I'll still listen to this even if I know I won't give it a nine myself .
Erik M. - 08.08.2014 at 23:46  
Written by Ilham on 08.08.2014 at 23:27

Well, even if a review is subjective, I'm sure he must have tried to be accurate with his rating, at least a little. I don't pay attention to people's voting habits, so I don't really know what a nine means to Che, so, for now, it's enough to get me excited about an album. Of course I pay attention to what's in the review more than the rating. All in all, what I want to say is, I'll still listen to this even if I know I won't give it a nine myself .


Oh don't get me wrong. I think Che definitely tries to be accurate, or is accurate, with his ratings. It's just that I've heard him mention a couple of times that he ended up disagreeing with his own ratings. Then again, more reviewers tend to do that, so it's not that strange. For me a 9 equals "excellent", btw. I'd say the review and rating are important. I tend to like reviews without ratings a bit less because I value ratings in general. The genre is also a huge factor for me when it comes to checking out new music.
Ilham - 08.08.2014 at 23:55  
Written by Erik M. on 08.08.2014 at 23:46
Oh don't get me wrong. I think Che definitely tries to be accurate, or is accurate, with his ratings. It's just that I've heard him mention a couple of times that he ended up disagreeing with his own ratings. Then again, more reviewers tend to do that, so it's not that strange. For me a 9 equals excellent, btw. I'd say the review and rating are important. I tend to dislike reviews without ratings because I value ratings in general. The genre is also a huge factor for me when it comes to checking out new music.
I didn't get you wrong, don't worry. There is a saying in French that goes like "only fools don't change their minds". I give Che the right to change his, and always take reviews in general with a pinch of salt .
Erik M. - 09.08.2014 at 00:05  
Written by Ilham on 08.08.2014 at 23:55

I didn't get you wrong, don't worry. There is a saying in French that goes like "only fools don't change their minds". I give Che the right to change his, and always take reviews in general with a pinch of salt .


Ah I see. Well, I don't take reviews very seriously anyway. Most of the time they're simply helpful in getting to discover new music. Admittedly, I often don't even read them, hence why the score is important to me. But yeah, I often find myself changing my opinion on albums I listen to as well. Nothing strange about that. In fact, the opposite would be weirder.
Troy Killjoy - 09.08.2014 at 00:08  
Written by Erik M. on 09.08.2014 at 00:05
Admittedly, I often don't even read them, hence why the score is important to me.

Just what every reviewer wants to hear!
Erik M. - 09.08.2014 at 00:13  
Written by Troy Killjoy on 09.08.2014 at 00:08

Just what every reviewer wants to hear!


I know it's a shitty thing to say, but it's the truth. Well, let's just say that most of the time I don't read the reviews that I encounter. That sounds better... right?

Only when a certain album interests me a lot, I read it. For example, I read the latest Empyrium review because of this. In other cases, when I don't know the album, the score is enough for me.
Ilham - 09.08.2014 at 01:34  
Poor Che must be sick of getting notifications for this, but this time it's for a good cause. I listened to the album, and it's as enjoyable as the psyche rock albums on vinyl my mum used to listen to. I like the fact it's a lot shorter than what I expected. It's certainly a good release, there's great musicianship at work in there, but it really lacks that originality factor that would make me come back to it.
Apothecary - 09.08.2014 at 03:28  
Written by Ilham on 09.08.2014 at 01:34

Poor Che must be sick of getting notifications for this, but this time it's for a good cause. I listened to the album, and it's as enjoyable as the psyche rock albums on vinyl my mum used to listen to. I like the fact it's a lot shorter than what I expected. It's certainly a good release, there's great musicianship at work in there, but it really lacks that originality factor that would make me come back to it.

The more the merrier
Yeah, it's not really that original, but in a way I don't think it needs to be. I wouldn't really call stoner metal a style inclined much towards originality in the first place, and at least Wo Fat can employ a more conventional sound without totally sucking at it. But if you do want some (kinda) orignal stoner, check out that Domovoyd debut I mentioned here, if you haven't already.
Apothecary - 09.08.2014 at 03:39  
Written by Erik M. on 08.08.2014 at 22:49

No offence to Che, but sometimes he ends up disagreeing with his own review scores. Like in case of the most recent Summoning and The Ruins of Beverast. My point is that this 9.0 score might very well drop to an 8.0 at a certain point.

Yeah dude, sometimes things just strike me as less impressive than at first after I've gone a good while listening to them. But not that often. With this album, I do think I'll retain my opinion that it's worth a solid 9. Groovy as fuck, and those psychedelic vibes just go so hard. Might not be too high on the originality factor, but these guys no what they're doing and they do it damn well. I will admit that there may be a slight degree of bias on my part though, because as I said, I love classic acid rock, and this album's just dripping with its influence.
Ilham - 09.08.2014 at 03:40  
Written by Apothecary on 09.08.2014 at 03:28
Yeah, it's not really that original, but in a way I don't think it needs to be. I wouldn't really call stoner metal a style inclined much towards originality in the first place, and at least Wo Fat can employ a more conventional sound without totally sucking at it. But if you do want some (kinda) orignal stoner, check out that Domovoyd debut I mentioned here, if you haven't already.
Of course, I wasn't expecting anything new, especially after listening to the debut and after reading the review. But, you know. I'm sure you understand what I meant. Will check that Freakazoid album.
Super_Greg - 09.08.2014 at 09:28  
Im loving the new stoner shit coming out.
Erik M. - 09.08.2014 at 17:35  
Written by Apothecary on 09.08.2014 at 03:39

Yeah dude, sometimes things just strike me as less impressive than at first after I've gone a good while listening to them. But not that often. With this album, I do think I'll retain my opinion that it's worth a solid 9. Groovy as fuck, and those psychedelic vibes just go so hard. Might not be too high on the originality factor, but these guys no what they're doing and they do it damn well. I will admit that there may be a slight degree of bias on my part though, because as I said, I love classic acid rock, and this album's just dripping with its influence.


Well, it's your review, which means it's subjective. So if you're biased it's justified, right? Seeing as you have a decent idea of my taste, would you say I'll like this? Because I have doubt as to whether I'll like it or not.
Super_Greg - 09.08.2014 at 18:06  
Written by Erik M. on 09.08.2014 at 17:35

Written by Apothecary on 09.08.2014 at 03:39

Yeah dude, sometimes things just strike me as less impressive than at first after I've gone a good while listening to them. But not that often. With this album, I do think I'll retain my opinion that it's worth a solid 9. Groovy as fuck, and those psychedelic vibes just go so hard. Might not be too high on the originality factor, but these guys no what they're doing and they do it damn well. I will admit that there may be a slight degree of bias on my part though, because as I said, I love classic acid rock, and this album's just dripping with its influence.


Well, it's your review, which means it's subjective. So if you're biased it's justified, right? Seeing as you have a decent idea of my taste, would you say I'll like this? Because I have doubt as to whether I'll like it or not.


Just go over to their soundcloud page and give it a listen for yourself
Erik M. - 09.08.2014 at 18:10  
Written by Super_Greg on 09.08.2014 at 18:06

Just go over to their soundcloud page and give it a listen for yourself


Fair enough. I might as well check out one song to see what I think of it.
Apothecary - 09.08.2014 at 18:23  
Written by Erik M. on 09.08.2014 at 17:35

Seeing as you have a decent idea of my taste, would you say I'll like this? Because I have doubt as to whether I'll like it or not.

Well it's definitely not "atmospheric," at least not in the way you'd probably prefer. If you enjoyed the Altar Of Betelgeuze debut, you should probably give this a shot. I mean, Wo Fat sound nothing like them, honestly, but similar recipe for good groove and heavy riffs, probably more so actually. And you know I always like to provide my readers a link to the full album when I can, so the Bandcamp's right there for you
Give the opener a spin, pretty good summatin of what the album's all about.
Erik M. - 09.08.2014 at 18:26  
Written by Apothecary on 09.08.2014 at 18:23

Well it's definitely not "atmospheric," at least not in the way you'd probably prefer. If you enjoyed the Altar Of Betelgeuze debut, you should probably give this a shot. I mean, Wo Fat sound nothing like them, honestly, but similar recipe for good groove and heavy riffs, probably more so actually.


Actually I've spun that Altar of Betelgeuze album a few days ago and I liked it a lot less than the first time. Mainly the clean vocals (which are annoying) and the less heavy parts are what I like less about it. In any case, I'll check out a song or two from this one to find out if I might like it.
LiquidSmoke - 15.08.2014 at 19:09  
That riff at the beginning of Read The Omens is a fucking groove train I have to say. I also have to say that I'm enjoying this album more than when it first came out.

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