From the rain and gloom of Portland was spawned Wizard Rifle; two malcontent twenty-somethings with a bent on creating something exhilarating and progressive amidst a scene of tepid dreamy pop, and redundant revival acts.
Drummer Sam Ford is a blur of tom rolls, rapid-fire rim shots, screaming out harmonies amid the flurry. Meanwhile guitarist Max Dameron spews out tentacles of noise, at times angular yet bizarrely groovy, at times psychedelic ambience, or purely crushing space-rock. The sheer sonic wall created by two is a sight to behold live, both members sharing signing duties and pushing to the limit of their abilities and ears.
The sound is rooted in a reverence for 70’s psychedelic and punk, and myriad contemporary acts without ever feeling like a throwback. Wizard Rifle seeks to push the boundaries beyond reference points and obvious nods to rock idols, but they’ve commonly been likened to King Crimson, Lightning Bolt, High on Fire, Misfits, Karp, Melvins, My Bloody Valentine, Sonic Youth, Sleep.
Last year, the lads relocated to Los Angeles, and immediately started work on their next album. Recruiting David Bow on bass, “Here in the Deadlights” was tracked by Max over three weeks at Breakfast studio in LA, then toiled over for a year, with Billy Anderson and Jesse Johnstone sharing mixing duties. The album sees Wizard Rifle pushing its sound into the sludge and reaching new levels of monolithic heaviness, while maintaining a propulsive groove which spins and twists upon itself. Tracks range from two to ten minutes, encompassing everything from sprawling psychedelic epics to surf-sludge noise-romps.