Guys, I’m Not Sure If I Should Be Listening to this Wolf King Album

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<Trigger-Scan: Initiate>

The recent spate of scumbaggery among black metal bands has me on high alert when checking out new music. You know the feeling when you’re really diggin’ a riff until you see the name of the band and/or album and you instantly feel like you need a cold shower and also to throw away all your tiki torches as a symbolic gesture to ridding yourself of this possible mistake? The black metal I listen to isn’t boring so I rarely have this issue, but I had a good scare last week upon jamming Wolf King’s Loyal to the Soil.

Either the band name or the album title alone may have passed under my radar, but with the minor connections that wolf imagery has with fascism and how “Loyal to the Soil” sounds like something Richard Spencer’s dankest turds would chant while marching around a statue of Leif Erikson for no goddamn reason, I am starting to get a little nervous.

1: POSSIBLY PROBLEMATIC
0: No Problemo

In this chaotic political climate it helps to do your homework. The first step to solving this little quandary is slapping the google with “BAND NAME + Nazi” and stabbing that search button. The Wikipedia page for “Fuhrer” is one of the top results. This is not looking good, dudebros.

2: POSSIBLY PROBLEMATIC
0: No Problemo

This record is coming out via Prosthetic Records, who have always seemed like a solid bunch. They’ve released some of my favorite albums in the last few years, including from The Atlas Moth, Loviatar, Bereft, and Junius. There’s no way they’d promote nazi dudes.

2: POSSIBLY PROBLEMATIC
1: No Problemo

Our dude on the far left in this pic is waring a Young And In the Way shirt. I’m gonna guess that this pic was taken before YAITW got accused of assault and then broke up their band three minutes later.

3: POSSIBLY PROBLEMATIC
1: No Problemo

This strain of venomous hardcore is usually rebellious in nature but not in the “I blame the world for my problems and therefore one or two specific groups must pay for that one time I disappointed my dad” kinda way.

3: POSSIBLY PROBLEMATIC
2: No Problemo

I didn’t transcribe all the lyrics, or any of them in fact, but the bits and pieces I can make out sound fairly harmless. Not even a single mention of the enslavement of an entire continent or religious group. Rare, in this day and age!

3: POSSIBLY PROBLEMATIC
3: No Problemo

Oh shit I need to break this tie! I guess we could judge the music.

The grooves run through you with rough edges and shockingly little consistency. The songs are in a state of flux that somehow cumulate to a coherent identity. I rarely enjoy things that are so anti-melodic, but the aggression feels authentic and it’s just so damn energizing. There is no fun to be had here. Sure, they like to say their sound is a little blackened, but since I don’t hear it, I’m going to confidently say they are too smart to be edgelords.

3: POSSIBLY PROBLEMATIC
4: No Problemo

That settles it. Wolf King is absolutely, totally not problematic and Loyal to the Soil kicks ass. Based on these observations, I can safely recommend you check out Wolf King’s latest when it drops on April 27.

</Trigger-Scan>

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