From the depths of Seattle’s nautical-themed Neptune Theatre, Andrew Stockdale, Wolfmother’s frontman, guitarist, and steadfast founder, emerged onto the historic stage with his strumming arm in the air and guitar pick in hand. The super shredder scanned the Rush-to-Ramones t-shirt clad crowd, howled “whoah!” (the signature intro to “Dimension”), and wailed into the fuzz-driven lead-off track from Wolfmother’s 2005 self-titled debut. The song’s lyrics -- Stephen King’s The Dark Tower meets Tolkien in a desert world filled with lightning, purple haze, angels, and a talking horse – made it a perfect prologue to a rock-fueled evening of mystical, time traveling tales.
Stockdale and company (Nate Wagner on drums and Nick Vogelpohl on Bass) moved forward with several progged-out classics from 2005’s Wolfmother, including the Grammy Award-winning, high octane “Woman” and psych-metal “White Unicorn.” Wolfmother completed the set with two transcendental-themed power chord dynamos, “Pyramid” and “Colossal.”
The axe annihilator’s metaphorical quests continued with a selection of escapist stories in the trippy “California Queen” from 2009’s Cosmic Egg, and the enchanting paean “Vagabond” (Wolfmother). The psychedelic prose in “Gypsy Caravan” from 2016’s Victorious served as an end to the travelogues with Stockdale executing sludgy breakdowns and finger-flailing guitar solos without fault.
Wolfmother wound down the show with the hit “Victorious,” the title track from the band’s 2016 release. The tale of perseverance in times of adversity and Stockdale’s fretted fury had the fans going wild with excitement. Feeding off the energy, Andrew jumped from the stage into the crowd and performed a raucous rendition of the epic “Joker and the Thief” (Wolfmother). After strumming the last power chords in the pit, Stockdale leaped onto the risers and disappeared backstage into the dark.
The concertgoers drew Wolfmother back toward the lights with screeching whistles and in-synch handclaps. Stockdale, Nate, and Nick returned to a thrilled crowd. Andrew picked up his guitar and paused momentarily to tell the nomadic storyline of Wolfmother’s first appearance almost twenty years ago at the local Chop Suey club, and how returning after touring the world was a dream come true. Andrew, now ready to rock, plugged in and ended the night belting out a cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Rock and Roll.” Stockdale’s Robert Plant-styled “yeaahh!” reverberated through the walls of the old Neptune Theatre, and for Wolfmother and fans, hopefully for many years to follow.
Stay a Little Longer
Rock 'n 'Roll Survivor
New Moon Rising
Joker and the Thief
Rock and Roll (Led Zeppelin cover)