It’s nice when something grabs your attention. As we plough through the photos from Hellfest and Wildfire we’re being kept entertained by Right To Rise, the second album from Detroit noise-smiths Wilson.
Following on from their debut “Full Blast Fuckery”, Right To Rise sees the band in deeper, more thoughtful mode. The album draws its inspiration from the city of Detroit, and from the trials and tribulations of modern life. As vocalist Chad Nicefield puts it, “The record is the story of anyone who is struggling in general, and what they have to do in order to get by. The title says that we all have the right to find our happiness and grow. You can take our city as an example. You look at it from the outside, hear all of these horror stories, and see so many terrible things. However, when you’re inside, you can see the triumph. You need to make your own way here. No one will respect you otherwise.”
Although not quite the Full Blast Fuckery of their debut, Right To Rise is still a more mature, and musically more diverse, up-tempo romp of down the line Rock’n’Roll which captures something of the live vibe that has given the quintet a formidable reputation.
Things kick off with the rasping riff of the title track which has one of those teen-angst appeasing “We got the right to rise” choruses that may not exactly be cut out for radio but by heck it’ll be a blast live. There’s a touch of the Foo Fighters at play here, albeit without the neutered commercial edge.
The F’ck you vibe continues with Guilty (You’re Already Dead) which, again, channels riff fueled passion and defiance, while Windows Down is just made for long blasts down the interstate with the top down.. or if you’re on this side of the pond killing time while stuck in roadworks on the M1.
The songs on Right To Rise have an unmistakably Wilson feel, variations on a theme as the band explore life’s trials and tribulations… and successes. Over the 12 tracks they send out their message of defiance loud and clear, to false friends, to the powers that be, to organised religion, to anyone who has pissed them off, held them back or out them down.
It’s been described as “A battering ram of riffs and swaggering grooves”, and if ever there was a phrase that summed up its subject matter perfectly then that’s it. The guitars crunch and grind, the melodies get inside your head and the lyrics strike a chord with the disaffected and the downtrodden (check out Give ’em Hell and Waiting For The World). Given that Wilson are unmistakably Hard Rock there are the usual-suspects of influences at play here but it’s always delivered with a bit of a twist to keep things sounding fresh. Chuck in some of the biggest choruses from the acme chorus factory and all the ingredients are there for something a bit special.