It was Spotify's fault, as I had never heard of Wolverine, and came across them through Spotify's "Related Artists" while listening to a Leprous release. Ultimately, this makes it Amazon's fault, as I had never heard of Leprous either, and came across that band through Amazon's "Recommendations for You". I purchased Bilateral
and this album, and thus far am very happy with both. Happy enough, I shall have to make some continuing investigations into the state of Scandinavian prog-metal - and particularly bands I might otherwise have dismissed as death metal. For it seems that both Leprous and Wolverine started as death metal bands, though you would not know it from either of the two albums I purchased.
The band which Wolverine seems most to be compared with (see the other reviews on this page, or do a little Googling) is Riverside, and I guess this is not far wrong, though I think they also bare some resemblence to Threshold. The comparison to Threshold is only emphasised by the singer sounding quite similar to Damian Wilson. While I like Damian Wilson, he does himself sound similar to Geoff Tate, but with less power. I hesistate to use the words weak or bland, but certainly Wilson doesn't often evoke any image of power with his vocals - and neither does the vocalist for Wolverine. The same could be said for the music, if you are expecting prog metal to be, well, metal. There is very little to this album which is really very metal at all - or even, perhaps, prog.
That said, this is a very enjoyable listen, with a nice flow of catchy, melodic and atmospheric music throughout. The occasional heavier moment (though never too heavy - so that I struggle to imagine how this band could ever have been death metal!), but for the most part the music is creative without being complex, and predictable rather than progressive. I have a feeling anyone approaching this as a "prog-metal" album might well be disappointed on one or both counts - but as a traditional, rock release, then I think this should more than satisfy anyone who gives it a listen. It definitely leaves me wanting more, and I will be adding the other Wolverine albums to my wishlist.