Wolfmother’s sophomore effort, “Cosmic Egg,” sees the Australian hard rock band return to true form following a four-year hiatus. After going through a lineup change that replaced two of the original members and added a fourth, the newly minted quartet is at the absolute top of their game on “Egg,” which manages to surpass their self-titled, Grammy award-winning debut.
The album is pretty much what many have come to expect from Wolfmother: the epitome of musicianship. Intricate melodies back the still-fresh and classic Led Zeppelin-esque vocals, not to mention mind-blowing guitar fills and solos that would make Hendrix jealous, all of which practically beg for a standing air-guitar impersonation.
“Egg” seems considerably more focused and tighter both musically and lyrically than Wolfmother’s already impressive 2005 original. Although brilliant in its own right, Wolfmother’s debut was a bit too sprawling. Their lyrics were typical of the genre: instantly singable but usually nonsensical. It isn’t too much different on “Egg,” and the band does retain its loose, spontaneous off-the-wall charm.
Musically, Wolfmother appears to be going in a bit of a darker direction. “Egg” simply feels heavier, more solid and more robust than Wolfmother’s previous effort. The group stays true to its habit of keeping song titles between one and three words (pretty rare in the post-Fall Out Boy age) and still name some songs after mythical creatures (the original album’s “White Unicorn” is followed up here with “Phoenix”).
The long awaited “Cosmic Egg” is an absolute must-have for fans of Wolfmother, as well as for those looking for something heavier, more professional and more drastic than a lot of what’s out there right now. This is what Zeppelin would’ve sounded like had they made it to 2009. Do yourself a favor and pick this one up, but spring for the deluxe version if you can, which features a handful of extra songs.
If you’re more into downloading, the standard iTunes version comes with two bonus tracks you won’t get if you buy a physical copy: a cover of Jimi Hendrix’s “If 6 Was 9” and an acoustic rendition of the title track. The deluxe iTunes version mysteriously drops the Hendrix cover but gives you the other extra songs and the acoustic version of “Cosmic Egg.”