oWo possess a dark and supremely catchy sound that casts a familiar shadow back to the 90s heyday of alternative Australian rock music while still sounding like a pure product of the bars and pubs of Sydney’s Inner West in 2022.
In the immortal words of oWo, “Rock’s not dead. It’s just inherently unstable.”
On the back of the well-received singles ‘Super Role Model’ and ‘Exit Plan‘, the band have now dispatched ‘Mock It’ to the airwaves and information super highway. Out of a tension-laden intro, surging distorted guitars spiral and grind amid the gloriously noisy, post punk rhythmic clatter.
Self described as “A three-wheeled garage hotrod that once cruised the byways of the 70’s AM band, now doing burnouts in the carpark of the post-rock supermarket,” oWo are a perfectly balanced rock ‘n’ roll unit, with all three members contributing to the songwriting and vocals. Right across their debut album, that shared experience and stability is a core feature of their music. Riffs that sound primitive and raw give way to post-rock textures with dexterity and subtlety before, more often than not, a swinging distorted sledgehammer re-enters the fray. That friction and contrast is the spark running through these nine songs that draw a line back through the likes of Mudhoney, Rollins Band, Fu Manchu, Red Kross and more.
Choruses often resemble slogans or headlines, chanted invocations amid the fascinating sonic landscapes the band forge from just two guitars and a drum kit. Opener ‘Civic Video‘ builds an exotic atmosphere before a melodic strain of jangly indie rock emerges, like a lost gem from the Flying Nun catalogue. Elsewhere, both ‘Dilemmatry‘ and ‘Ivory Sand‘ possess a glam stomp and hard-charging stoner strut, ‘The Shepherd‘ harnesses a METZ-styled noise rock and ‘Domesticated‘ is a unadorned garage/grunge rock gem.