BEING THERE: Wolfmother @ The Troc


Photo by TOM BECK

The first time I saw Wolfmother was in 2006, and boy have times changed. What was a rowdy, teenager-infused rock and roll mosh show at the Electric Factory has turned into a stagnant Ed Hardy t-shirt-infused sausage fest full of old-but-wanna-be-young stoner metalheads at the much smaller Trocadero. Back then, voice-beaming front man Andrew Stockdale was joined by Chris Ross and Myles Heskett onstage. Since that time, the band’s gone through a number of different lineup changes, having as many as four members in the band. As evidenced last night at The Troc, the band has reverted back to a threesome, complete with Stockdale’s fellow Australians Ian Peres and Alex Carapetis, the latter of which was borrowed from Strokes’ front man Julian Casablancas’s side project The Voidz. For three straight albums now, Wolfmother has tried to reinvent its debut album — a riffy balls-to-the-wall rock and roll record reminiscent of old school Deep Purple that featured songs like “Woman” and “Joker & the Thief,” both of which you’ve heard on the radio before — rather than come up with a fresh new sound. For the most part, this came off sounding forced. Onstage, it looks forced too. At various points in the night, Stockdale would delusionally flail his arms and guitar in an attempt to increase crowd engagement, which could only be observed when first album favorites like “Vegabond,” “White Unicorn” and “Dimension” were played. I’d tell you some of the other newer songs they played, but I couldn’t tell them apart. Sorry. — TOM BECK