Fractured (A Bit)
LTW, meet 3LW. The Black Country behemoths continue to switch sounds and slay every song. Sam Lambeth gets fractured (a bit) on reviewing duties.
3 Little Wolves might just be the most punk band going at the moment. Before you sharpen your pitchforks, think about it. Punk, as an aesthetic, is all about breaking down barriers, taking on new sounds and forever cocking your stylistic snoot to the man. If that’s what punk truly is, then 3 Little Wolves should be wearing nose rings and spitting on a pic of Prince Charles.
Since exploding on to the scene, 3LW are musical chameleons. Forever restless and constantly searching, their back catalogue now comprises of trip hop, trap, drill, hard rock and synth pop. They don’t give a damn what they try, and they don’t care about convention. If it sounds good, these wolves will pick and chew at it like the sensational scavengers they are.
It’s a modern, refreshing approach to making music, but with their latest single they’ve hit a sweet spot.
Sweet being the operative word. 3LW have never sounded as melodic as they do on Fractured (A Bit). Beginning with a breezy, defiant acoustic guitar and a stinging, Western riff straight from Hank Marvin’s songbook, Fractured (A Bit) has the vintage rockabilly of The Coral.
Full of hazy harmonies that recall Scottish legends Teenage Fanclub – and fellow rising stars Moonlight Parade – it’s easy to float away in Fractured’s forlorn loveliness. Once we reach the chorus, it’s a brilliant blend of boy-girl harmonies and clever witticisms that recall The Beautiful South at their most, well, beautiful.
“Everything’s fractured,” they sigh on the chorus. The truth, is, though, that the song is so damn lovely you think they’re singing about glitter and puppies. Even layers of surging synths and striking guitars can’t shadow the sunkissed beauty of this song.
3 Little Wolves are promising that 2022 is going to be “the year of the wolf.” On this evidence, there’s a howling good chance.
All words by Sam Lambeth. Sam is a Birmingham-based journalist and musician. More of his work for Louder Than War is available on his archive. He also runs his own blog and his music can be found on Spotify.