IN THE RED
Wand’s sophomore album Golem opens with a whisper, a soft “whoosh” that blows by like an icy breeze on some frozen tundra. It’s as subtle as the rush of air that comes from an oncoming train, and a sensory warning of the nonstop noise barrage about to come barreling at you. Named appropriately for a mythological creature brought to life from dirt and clay, Golem is a solid slab of relentless psych-rock aggression. The album’s more trippy elements are anchored down by the heft of thunderous guitar licks straight from the halls of death metal (Cory Hanson’s vocals manage not to get lost in the cacophony). The album reaches its peak on “Planet Golem,” a six-and-a-half-minute epic that descends into wordless, otherworldly distortion halfway through. Golem ends with a whimper rather than a bang, with a palate-cleansing two minutes of silence, but after experiencing the album’s full onslaught, you’ll be grateful for the white noise.