(By Leanne Ridgeway, Owner/Chief Editor, RiffRelevant.com)
Wo Fat are not the evil villains of their namesake. Quite the opposite, in fact. This Texas trio are some of the more relaxed, humble, endearing gents I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting (last year at The Maryland Doom Fest). However, to listen to them play is an altogether villainous experience…
With Kent Stump on guitar and vocals, Zack Busby on bass, and Michael Walter on drums, these three dole out much darkness in their fuzzed massivity. Many a time during road trips, I’ve caught myself driving 30+ over the speed limit whilst the mighty Wo was blaring out of my speakers. My apologies, Officer Speedtrap, but I was simply enveloped by the umbra and vacuumed up into the riffnado.
Wo Fat have been around the world in support of their multiple releases, and this past Fall they let loose a live album recorded from their travels: ‘Live Juju: Freak Valley and Beyond’ (grab it here or stream below). 2017’s ‘Live JuJu…’ is somewhat of a supplemental extension to their 2015 ‘Live JuJu…‘ as it includes a full second live recording from a Texas show in addition to the Freak Valley set.
I invited Wo Fat’s weapon of mass percussion, Michael Walter, to share his top albums for 2017, and he was kind enough to toss some beauties our way. Aside from his rhythmic trouncing behind their swampadelic tunes, Mr. Walter also owns and operates Crystal Clear Sound recording studio in Fort Worth, Texas.
Riff Relevant‘s guest columnist Brendan Burns (of Wasted Theory) had the pleasure of interviewing Michael last year for his ‘Drummer Spotlight’ series. You can check that out here and learn more about his Crystal Clear studio, and his mind-draw toward the intricacies of his music listenings. That interview is (in part) why I thought to ask Michael for his favorite albums of the year. He’s also just a really nice dood.
RiffRelevant.com presents to you Michael Walter’s Favorites of 2017! Michael gave us a list of 18 titles, and we have an audio stream and band link for each release on his list:
I know I’ve left so many out and that this list is all over the place. I also think that I tend to favor some bands for their full body of work, or that I want to see them live, or that I’ve already seen them live and have been blown away.
These are absolutely IN NO ORDER AT ALL – that would be impossible, and I would have to just start over… I have no idea why there are 18 versus 10 or 20.
Many thanks to Michael Walter for sharing his favorites for the year, as well as to all the men of Wo Fat for sharing their music with the rest of us. – Leanne
Here is Wo Fat’s latest release ‘Live Juju: Freak Valley and Beyond‘ . Stay tuned for more Wo Fat in 2018.