Monster Wolf, never heard of? This may be due to the fact that the hardcore band is still largely unknown and is only known to a somewhat smaller circle. The band formed around the professional wrestler Mecha Wolf 450 (John Yurnet), who is known to a wider audience through his facepaint – very fitting to the music – or the wolf mask. When he’s not in the ring or training, he dedicates himself to music, among other things, and he also wrote his entrance. At the beginning of July Monster Wolf surprised with the Live EP Monster Massacre. The EP was recorded in Austin, Texas (USA) in May 2022 when the band was on stage with Cancerslug.
The songs have long been known to fans. Of course, the midnight-wolf-darkness-theme is always somehow present, it’s not a cuddle course either, because Mecha Wolf drives here. “Lupin Skin Killer” gets you started and after about 50 seconds really blasts off. A guitar intro is never wrong and you can always use a good riff. Played quickly, totally catchy and absolutely danceable. This strains the neck muscles when headbanging – and that’s exactly how it should be. The singer himself bangs his lyrics into the microphone with a deep, somewhat rough voice. Oh, is that where the first disappointment comes in? Let’s see. Song number two is “Mecha Wolf”, an old wrestling fan must know this, right? Again a nice intro, pounding, a bit slower, heavier, that’s darkness in musical form, you have – if you disregard the wrestling – this film scene in front of your inner eye: midnight, wafts of fog, ominous music and then that monster is coming, glorious old school horror. The lyrics are about fighting and winning. There’s also the sing-along spot and it’s so perfect for a little metal club, not too crowded, dark, smoky, mysterious. “Lust for Flesh” – what can I say? Same style, same power. However, one hears a very clear weakness here. No, not the singing itself, but the recording. It’s not a studio recording, finely edited, well balanced, with a bit of autotune, no, it’s a live recording, dirty, unclean, but with the necessary power of such a genre. Who wants polished live metal, horror punk, thrash with a clean slate? No one. You want dirty sounds, like bawling, a bit of screaming, a bit of growling, something fast to go, wall-of-death material – and in the end your neck has to hurt. “Samhain” is short and painless, followed almost seamlessly by “Halloween”, which is very easy to sing along to. It sounds a bit like the Sex Pistols here, like that rough, dirty, unpolished punk rock, like a beery bawling that you poke around to – and that, in turn, continues in “Vampira”. These three songs are not even two minutes long. But somehow that doesn’t matter. “Proelium (Fight)” forms the conclusion – and at the same time a foretaste of the announced debut album. Here you have heavy guitars again, a stronger Metal touch. The rhythm drives on, on and on.
If you only concentrate on the music and ignore the inconsistencies and lack of subtlety that the fact of the live recording brings with it, you have a very solid metal number, especially on the last song, which contains everything you like to have on you festival or at least a concert. The ending is “Thank you, we’re fucking Monster Wolf, good night!” – the way he says it, I know that I absolutely have to revise my wish to finally see Monster Wolf live in Germany and tear down a club with them. Guys, I’m standing there crying in the hall if you put it that way! That will not do. The voice, the style, everything is reminiscent of a great, Lemmy – and maybe it’s intentional, a beautiful, touching homage to the greatest.
It’s not perfect, but it’s a dirty, sinful, awesome live EP for friends of the heavier music genre. Volume turned up and headbanged and pogged properly. That’s snotty, that sounds like Wacken, like one of the first slots there, like mud and dirt and an irrepressible desire for so much more!
3,5 / 5 (due to recording)
Monster Wolf – Monster Massacre LIVE
only on streaming platforms
Lupin Skin Killer
Lust for Flesh