It’s been a long four year wait since Wonderboom released their last album, but their latest offering, The Automatic Shuffle is finally here and it’s a goodie. Fans have actually been hearing songs off the new album at shows and on the radio since early last year, but for a number of reasons it was only released in December 2010, and I only managed to get my hands on a copy last weekend. Totally worth the wait though.
It’s always obvious when listening to a Wonderboom album why these guys have managed to stick around in a fickle industry as long as they have. Their sound has always been the perfect blend of edgy guitar sounds, beautiful lyrics and a fearsome rhythm section, and they’ve pulled it off once again on The Automatic Shuffle. If anything, the intensity of their sound, and the energy of their performances has increased recently, which I’m sure is partly due to the inclusion of the uber-talented Garth McLeod (Martin Rocka and the Sick Shop and Sugardrive) on the drums. It’s also because all four band members are not only technically gifted, but ooze passion for what they do. This translates into great songs and fun-filled gigs.
The new album is a trademark mix of the ballads Wonderboom do best, and the kind of songs that make you want to jump up and down. It’s hard to choose a favourite, but for the moment I’d say mine is Here I Am, which is a beautiful love song that happens to have the most awesome guitar bits too. On the Radio is catchy and fun, and the title track, which rounds the album off, is a really interesting departure – in it, Martin Schofield (guitars) does most of the vocals in a languid, spoken word style, which is the perfect ending to a wonderful album…one I’ve had on repeat for the last week.