REVIEW album Old Subbacultcha Old Subbacultcha

Vulkano Provide A Retina-Searing Blast Of Colour

Old Subbacultcha

Old Subbacultcha

An experimental, offbeat debut

vulkano pic

Vulkano - Live Wild Die Free 6/1o

Out Now, Self-release

Vibrant, freewheeling and enjoyably uneven, Vulkano’s debut sees them leaving the shadow of former band Those Dancing Days once and for all. Veering between skewed, psychedelic pop and playful post-punk, ‘Live Wild Die Free’ won’t be for all: but listeners with an appetite for the surreal should find much to enjoy. The Swedish duo –consisting of Cissi Efraimsson on vocals/drums, and Lisa Pyk Wirström on keys/percussion - have plenty of tricks up their sleeves. An air of genuine menace underpins the grinding bass and piercing synth work of ‘Psycho Girl’ (sample lyric: “named after a cat, and cute like one/miaow, owww) before it shudders into out frenzy, and indeed contrasts provide a common thread here. Sweet and sinister, minimal and cacophonic, Vulkano’s compositions mask darker concerns in fairytale imagery and a raw, hyperactive vocal delivery: see the surprisingly funky ‘Jungle’ and its nonsensical Tarzan and Jane narrative, or the suitably galloping ‘We Ride’. It’s rough around the edges, and deliberately so.  Vulkano are all about freedom and while things become muddled at times, there are enough defiant, magical moments here to warrant a few good listens. Whether unleashing their primal howl on ‘Choir Of Wolves’ stripping back with ‘Clap Your Bones’ or channelling their inner ‘80s miserablists on ‘Vision Tricks’ they approach matters from a likably offbeat angle, and come up with some intriguing ideas. Not everything works, the duo’s taste for the bizarre occasionally tipping their songwriting off-balance and into incoherence... but you’ve got to respect them for producing a clutch of provocative, even thought-provoking pop songs, and frankly not giving two shits what listeners may be expecting. Chances are that these songs will translate more favourably live, their anarchic energy perfectly suited for plastering a grin across punters’ faces. Even so this is a debut that’ll keep you guessing, trying out countless personas along the way, and providing a retina-searing blast of colour from beginning to end. It’ll be exciting to see where they take this in the future, but right now, ‘Live Wild Die Free’ deserves your time.