Wow & Flutter
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Wow & Flutter

Portland, Oregon, United States | INDIE

Portland, Oregon, United States | INDIE
Band Rock Punk


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Waves of Sonic Youth, Smashing Pumpkins, and Pixies: Wow & Flutter’s Equilibrio!"

Waves of Sonic Youth, Smashing Pumpkins, and Pixies flow through “The Puget Sound,” the opening track of Wow & Flutter’s Equilibrio!. There’s angular guitar, flashes and crashes of percussion, and pulled back verses of haunting vocals that lead into the guitar-led choruses. The chiming guitar of “Scars” is exquisite, along with the high hat breaks on the choruses. My Morning Jacket keyboards progressively introduce “Someone Save Me” along with indie rock vocals before setting into an atmospheric, orchestrated rock. Plus with a line like “Someone save me/so I can save you” has plenty of room for exploring the spiritual.

While you normally associate the railroad rhythm with Country, “Union Pacific” picks up the train track rhythm in a 90’s alternative rock sort of way. The shouted, noisy “Ivan the Terrible” brings to mind some of the noisier chants of Camper van Beethoven. The obtuse, wry “Mechanical Kill” works off the influence of the Fall while perhaps even hearing Pere Ubu in there too. - Music Spectrum Blog

"Free and legal MP3: Wow & Flutter (endearing, squonky rocker)"

Pleasantly crunchy and semi-dissonant, “Scars” opens with a yin-yang-y guitar riff—three parts ringing and harmonic-laced, one part fuzzy and purposeful, as if the band were still deciding what kind of song this was going to be even after they already started recording. What they ended up with is a deft blend of the opening riff’s two attributes, as a drony, unresolved sensibility courses through a brisk guitar rocker otherwise mixing the offhanded brio of an Exile On Main Street outtake with the squonky quirkiness of the Pixies. Translation: it’s curiously engaging, and it rocks.

And because I haven’t gotten on my “value of experience” soapbox in quite a while, I’ll take this opportunity to point out that Cord Amato has been in front of a band called Wow & Flutter, in one incarnation or another, since 1998. But here we are living through a musical day and age that seems to be about the opposite of letting musicians breath and grow and (dare I suggest it) learn their craft over an extended period of time. No, we’re much too focused here online on being sure to find everything first, and really fast, and then on to the next, even first-er and faster thing.

Tiring it is. I’m really happy to hear musicians who sound like they’ve been around a little while. Wow & Flutter, a trio at this point, will release its seventh album, Equilibrio!, next week on Mt. Fuji Records. MP3 via Mt. Fuji. - Fingertips Music Blog

"Wow & Flutter: Equilibrio!"

This Portland band’s latest album is another first-rate set of dark, tension-filled post-punk that combines the arty atmospherics of Sonic Youth with a more scuzzy, visceral rock attack on a variety of memorable songs with strong, distinctive hooks. 9/16/2010 -Don Yates - Kexp Album Reviews

"Wow & Flutter: Scars"

A real head-bopper that's rough around the edges and raw enough for the reality of the song to shine through. It's this genuineness that lends itself to the truth of the song's message. With energetic rumble, "Scars" tells us not to hide from the past, but to instead embrace it. The cuts and bruises, the mistakes of the past are nothing to hide from. What Wow & Flutter tell us is that these are things we should be proud of. Nothing should be embarrassing, because if it's part of our past, it's helped get us to this point in the present. In its own way, it's a life-affirming song that provides the confidence to be proud of who we are, because without the foundation of our past, we wouldn't be standing today. Enjoy life, don't hide from it. The confident burst of Sonic Youth/Sebadoh-style guitars and the spur of bass and drums help push this message to the forefront.

Wow & Flutter is taken from a term that refers to analog tape fluctuation, in case you were wondering.

"Scars" is from Wow & Flutter's new album, Equilibrio!, out October 19th on Mt. Fuji Records. The word "Equilibrio" is Italian for "balance." Truly a band that's inspiring and wants to make life more enjoyable! Preorder the album here. - Mixtape Muse

"Balancing Act: Wow & Flutter Get Serious"

"We've probably been three or four bands in the last 14 years," says guitarist-vocalist Cord Amato in all seriousness.

It's true; the Wow & Flutter of 2008 to present-day is nearly nothing like the Wow & Flutter of 1996 to 2007 (they won't perform material released prior to 2008's Golden Touch, so stop asking). Equilibrio!—the band's latest, and first on Seattle imprint Mt. Fuji—is easily their best work. The title (Italian for "balance") is appropriate, too. While there's plenty of the rambling guitar squall of early records like In a Dark Room and 2002's Names, Equilibrio! is given full power-trio treatment; songs are shorter, lean, and dripping with punk scuzz and pop hooks.

"A record over 42 minutes better be fucking genius," says Houston, explaining that the decision to cut Equilibrio! on vinyl in addition to compact disc forced the band to trim some of the fat. "The CD format sometimes leads to not editing yourself."

Not to mention the album's cover art—a photo of a young '50s-era girl, belly flat on the ground, arms and legs extended (and touching) behind her head—is made for the vinyl format.

"That's my mom," Amato tells me. I don't believe him, but he's not joking about this. "She didn't know we used it until I gave her a copy of the record." - Portland Mercury

"Wow & Flutter"

Portland’s Wow & Flutter have been making music for the better part of a decade, yet they remain criminally overlooked by Northwest audiences. On 2008’s Golden Touch, they vacillated wildly between artful, post-punk rumbles and spaghetti-Western romps, all the while with a dark undercurrent churning beneath them that hinted at what more menacing moments might be downstream. Indeed, with follow-up Equilibrio! (released this month on Seattle-based Mt. Fuji Records), they’ve dived headfirst into that current, going darker and deeper in tone and timbre, but still with just enough pop savvy to keep things buoyant. With Virgin Islands, The Golden Blondes, The Botherations.HANNAH LEVIN
Fri., Oct. 29, 10 p.m., 2010 - Seattle Weekly

"New Song : Wow And Flutter : Scars"

Portlanders Wow And Flutter are new to me, and I’m guessing to y’all as well. Based solely on their promo shots, I’m hoping they’re furverts (or at least furries) because it’s high time legitimate subculture returned to popular music. Scars is the first release from the band’s upcoming album Equilibrio!, and if it’s representative of what the rest of Equilibrio! is like, strap yourself in for a wild ride. I’m not even going to bother trying to inventory the sonic menagerie that is Scars, but I think it’s safe to say that fans of Sonic Youth, The Pixies and The Minutemen will find plenty to like in the WAF’s ADD-inspired post-punk. Actually, someone needs to call Maury, because there’s a good chance Wow And Flutter and one of my fave bands, Austin’s The Gary, were separated at birth. Get Equilibrio! from Mt. Fuji on October 19th. - My Old Kentuky Blog

"Wow & Flutter Equilibrio! (Mt Fuji Records)"

[REJUVENATED POST-PUNK] Local post-rock trio Wow & Flutter is hardly a new band. In fact, this isn’t even its first incarnation; starting back in the mid-’90s as a five-piece led by singer-guitarist Cord Amato and drummer Jack Houston, Wow & Flutter has been mining the same squalling guitar feedback and krautrock rhythms for a good while now. It’s also my opinion that these guys have been vastly underrated, a fate that I hope will change with Equilibrio!, the band’s latest—and greatest—LP.

Equilibrio! (Italian for “balance”) is the band’s first release for Seattle upstart Mount Fuji Records, and it’s a darker, more eclectic record than the group’s last full-length, 2008’s punk-infused Golden Touch. There are a few moments here that rival just about any indie-rock record released this year: “Scars” sounds like a lost single from Sonic Youth’s late period (it would fit perfectly at the beginning of Rather Ripped), and “Union Pacific” skirts by with clattering rhythms and some nifty fretwork. “Ivan the Terrible” stomps with an evil sneer that’s new for the band, and closer “The Day Before the World Explodes” uses all of its six minutes to build to an epic, fuzzed-out and hopeful finale.

And it’s that sound—a certain youthful exuberance—that radiates through the record. Wow & Flutter seems rejuvenated, like the line from “Scars” (“Mixtapes of my youth I can’t throw away/ I’m still jumping someone else’s train”) is the most important thing in the world. And maybe it is. Let’s just be happy that we get to hear that joy run for 38 exuberant minutes. MICHAEL MANNHEIMER.—WW EDITORIAL STAFF - Willamette Week


EQUILIBRIO! - CD/Vinyl (Mt Fuji Records) Released Oct. 2010
GOLDEN TOUCH - CD/Vinyl (Jealous Butcher Records) Released Sept. 2008
ELEMENTS - 7" (Jealous Butcher Records -2005)
NAMES - CD (J.B.R. -2002)
IN A DARKROOM - CD (J.B.R. -2000)



Taking the name Wow & Flutter in the late 90's from a term
for analog tape fluctuation, frontman Cord Amato revels in
imperfections. The band's current lineup solidified around
2006 with Amato rounded out by Jack Houston on drums
and Ryan Matheson on bass and keyboard. Their new
album, Equilibrio! (Italian for balance), finds the trio
crawling into a much darker space than 2008's critically
lauded Golden Touch. Maintaining the diversity of its
predecessor, the album sounds bleak but not brooding...
it's as if the band is celebrating scuzzy defects and
enjoying their time wallowing in the mire. Amato is often
quoted as saying “You’re only as old as you rock.” and I'm
happy to say that if Golden Touch was a snotty punk in his
early 20's, Equilibrio! is a musician that's settled into his
own skin; one that's comfortable, confident and well aware
of how to calculate their anger instead of exploding at the
world. The resulting eight songs veer from Omnichordbased
fairytale spookiness, Spacemen 3 gospel-drone and
a touch of Krautrock. Beyond that, the band steadily
maintain their fuzzed-out caveman pummeling drenched in
taut hums and wreaking of burnt wires and blown speakers.