Wolf & Chain – An Honest Mistake

By Renette van der Merwe

Oh emo hearts, behold! If you’ve had a 2005 sized hole in your life since the leather clad, makeup stained days of My Chemical Romance’s ‘Three Cheers’ and Panic! At The Disco’s ‘A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out’, then Wolf & Chain are here to fill it with their debut EP, An Honest Mistake. 

From the opening explosive verse from single, ‘An Honest Mistake’, it’s clear the Adelaide outfit has been wholly possessed by bands from that era – think My Chem and The Used – theatrical, concept driven art that’s dark and seedy, but also undeniably melodic as every track sinks in its teeth. This track introduces us to the concept of a preacher consumed by moulding the world to his vision by any means. The tempo changes often, which adds to the frenzy of the dynamic riffs and spurring drums to create the setting of this world Wolf & Chain invite the listener to be a part of. 

Concepts are always tricky to navigate and with this particular one, the intro to ‘Repent’ could border on overplayed as vocalist Jack Cumes delivers a monologue in a preacher/ringmaster/town crier style performance. Luckily, this does no harm to the track, which still shines when an incredible breakbeat style drum fill leads into a soaring chorus.

‘Killer Wolf’ showcases Cumes’ best vocal capabilities, as he effortlessly jumps between low growls and pleading cries. Along with ‘Murder Song’ it also displays the band’s instrumental prowess and an understanding for powerful songwriting. The breakdowns, particularly on ‘Killer Wolf’ will literally have you scrambling to listen to it again and again. 

‘An Honest Mistake’ might not particularly be a new idea, but it’s one that is executed with skill and pizzazz. It functions well as a concept, but even without knowing its story, it’s electrifying and a hell of a lot of fun. 

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