OCTO WALLACE - Fast Women, Slow Horses

Octo Wallace - Fast Women, Slow Horses

9 songs
40:38 minutes
***** ***


Some bands truly like to challenge the reviewers. Without the support of a label, Cologne quartet Octo Wallace has recently released their third CD Fast Women, Slow Horses. The cover artwork which has been drawn by a pen displays already a certain naïve charm. As soon as you learn that they play prog minus shit, you just have to be curious about what to expect.

The title track begins the album as a short intro and is followed by the lengthy Cliff Burton With Happy Finish which doesn’t remind me of Metallica, but rather of mid-Seventies King Crimson. Imagine a hard rocking prog rock band with distorted bass guitar (ok, that much IS Cliff Burton), screaming guitar and pounding drums. The following Listrik, shorter again, could be from one of Mike Patton’s many bands, like Fantômas jamming with Mr. Bungle. The vocals are used only sparingly, but whenever the band seems it necessary, they convince with weird effects and a certain effeminate quality. Cosmo Bob for instance is a shorter, more accessible track with parallels to Grobschnitt, emphasising Octo Wallace’s love for kraut rock. The bizarrely titled Der Hahn Isst Kot! is a one minute proto grind core eruption, proof of the band’s undeniable sense of humour. The album ends again with two longer songs, where especially the concluding Oliver Beerhenke And The Purple Pipers At The Gates Of Avalon ends the CD on a great note.

Octo Wallace truly have the spirit of progressive rock without the arrogant narcissism displayed so often in the genre. The Cologne rockers sound even too direct to appeal to your typical prog fan. At times one would wish for the band to work a little harder on their accessibility, but eventually Fast Women, Slow Horses remains an entertaining if quite short take at original rock music. Adventurous discoverers of unlikely sounds should definitely give these guys a chance.

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