The Joy Formidable :: Wolf’s Law

Last night, I had some friends over. As it goes, I quietly DJ behind the scenes of the conversation until they start to notice the music and finally say, “Hey who’s this?” Turns out it wasn’t The Joy Formidable we were listening to when it happened. It was Foals and their album Holy Fire, which I did a review for here, and, yes, it remains one of my favourite albums of the year.

When I saw one friend close his eyes and start grooving along, I knew he was hooked. Hooked on Foals, but also on the music I was introducing him to. And this particular friend is no slouch in the music department, having been a lead producer at The Edge for many years, before jumping to TV.

TheJoyFormidable-WolfsLaw

Editor’s Note: We already covered this album in the past, but this particular review was enthusiastically written up by Nathan, who really wants you to check them out.

Last night, I had some friends over. As it goes, I quietly DJ behind the scenes of the conversation until they start to notice the music and finally say, “Hey who’s this?” Turns out it wasn’t The Joy Formidable we were listening to when it happened. It was Foals and their album Holy Fire, which I did a review for here, and, yes, it remains one of my favourite albums of the year.

When I saw one friend close his eyes and start grooving along, I knew he was hooked. Hooked on Foals, but also on the music I was introducing him to. And this particular friend is no slouch in the music department, having been a lead producer at The Edge for many years, before jumping to TV.

However, after the Foals fest, and knowing I had their attention, I immediately switched the beats over to The Joy Formidable.

Even now, as I listen to Wolf’s Law while writing this, I feel like every song belongs on the radio. Not in a sell-out, queued-up, pop-made-for-broadcast type way, but in the way that you’d hear any one of their songs and feel compelled to whip out Shazam and say, “Who the hell is making this awesome sound?!”

The Joy FormidableFronted by the adorably sexy Rhiannon “Ritzy” Bryan on lead vocals and guitar, along with her long-time rockin’ partner Rhydian Dafydd on bass and backing vocals, this Welsh-born duo have had a few percussionists but have settled in nicely with Matthew James Thomas.

‘This Ladder is Ours’ starts very strong for the album, and could easily be a summer anthem you’d hear in your car a dozen times if it breaks. With a distinct, pixie-esque voice, crashing symbols, and riffs that will force out the air guitar in all of us, if you find the right moment in your life with this song, it will stick to it forever.

‘Cholla’ builds as the next song, and ups the tempo and rock riffs, and then drops in Rhydian’s backing vocals to fill in the depth.

‘Tendons’ is the third track that, again, could easily rock the radio. The crazy, raunchy electronic groove that flows under it will curl your lip and make you bop your head. I guarantee it.

‘Bats’ brings it, as well. It’s probably the fastest, rockiest so far: catchy. With a bit of distortion covering Ritzy’s voice, this song warns you to turn the volume UP before the beat drops in. Want to feel this song? Do as you’re told! Turn it up!

At this point, we’re five songs in, and a rock scream from Ritzy says, “Yes, we’re bringin’ it!”

TheJoyFormidableWolfsLaw-2So, like any good band, they give you a breather!

‘The Silent Treatment’ slows it down. A gorgeous acoustic guitar comes in and plays beautifully with her voice over this simple song, which is actually about slowing things down, being calm, being reasonable, being empowered, doing what’s right for her.

But, let’s not forget: The Joy Formidable is here to rock. ‘Maw Maw Song’ and ‘Forest Serenade’ knock it out of the park to bring  the album home.

I listen to a lot of music. I’m sure you do, too. I don’t tell friends about a lot of bands, because I know only a few will make it through the cracks of their interest. So, I save it. I save it for the good ones. The ones that will give me credibility with my recommendations. The ones they’ll like, too.

Wolf’s Law by The Joy Formidable is one of those albums.

Thanks to The Joy Formidable.

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