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Style: hard rock, heavy metal, blues-rock
Home: New York City
Members: Charles "Mongoose" Canedo ~ vocals/guitar/bass
Luis Cambrero ~ drums
Guest: Jose Cambrero ~ percussion
There's so many ways to look at this latest album by TW: as their former bassist, though I left long before this set of songs were written; or, in light of TW's first two releases, though they are all incredibly different musically & are EP's compared to this first full-length; or, in light of the fact that TW has deliberately aimed for something different with each release as they walk their creative path; or, just ignore all of the above & listen to it within its own context. It's probably the most difficult choice I've faced in reviewing an album! In terms of the music, speaking as a former bandmate & still calling the guys friends, TW has moved a long way in a relatively short amount of time in terms of style & creativity. The riffs are still fairly basic, heavier on groove than flash, which also includes the drums which are less flashy but also more solid than previous releases, though the bluesy roots & Motorhead wannabe moments have finally slipped out of sight. The songwriting remains grounded instead of floating in philosophical confusion. Lyrical frontman Charles 'Mongoose' Canedo has a tendency to write songs about characters such as menacing beasts on a quest in "Wolf King" & "Mammoth", a wild night girl in "Crown Of Fire", the beloved Catholic saint in "Saint Christopher", a mysterious troubled lover in "While You Were Sleeping", a friend needing a kick in the pants with the lyrically simple "Drive", "Down For The Cause" is a prod to fellow NYC bands & even the songwriter comes into the spotlight in "Crossroads" which also is a message to others to respect & love themselves in a unique turn of the Mississippi sell your soul legend. Though, at the same time, the objects of discussion are not so obvious. Is it really St. Christopher under the microscope, particularly with the very un-Christian sounding spoken word injection "Welcome to the house of the Mongoose" during an instrumental break? Are the wolf king & mammoth beasts or actually humbled men on creative & spiritual quests? In light of the band's first two releases While You Were Sleeping neither has the blues of their first EP nor the experimental metal of the second, though opening track "Wolf King" does feature ethnic drums courtesy of Jose Cambrero, the father of blazing away as always drummer Luis Cambrero. Actually, While You Were Sleeping probably has the most distinct personality of their three releases as gone are the influences & arriving is a sound unique to TW with a low end rumble running through all the riffing that shifts the focus of the songs away from the solos to the overall feeling. TW has also gotten much heavier without getting complicated, both in terms of guitars & drums ... complication being what one might have expected. This is an album that defies expectations. To honestly compare the three releases is quite difficult as it's not so much that each features a different personality but it also feels like a different band - though it's always been the same two guys along with continuing the tradition of not having a bassist available beyond the gigs for the recordings. But, now, the band seems more comfortable with the fact that the bass is not by an elusive outsider with the basslines seemingly written as part of the process & not added afterwards because nobody was available. This has also given an evenness to the sound of the album that was missing on the first two albums. While You Were Sleeping sounds like parts to a whole not a collection of varied songs. In terms of defying expectations is the inclusion of two instrumental tracks "Shadow Cast" & "Dronology", though both are odd little tunes that sounds more like improvisations that wants to be Hendrix or a demo than finished tracks.
(featured on the Roman Midnight Music CD Reviews & Interviews podcast: episode 27 "Interview: Charles Canedo of Tired Wings," August 2011, click here to listen)