Parallel to his work as a musician, psych rock Vanderwolf has enjoyed a hugely successful career as a music programmer and concert producer, working for some of the worlds’ most celebrated clubs and concert venues including New York’s legendary Knitting Factory and the Royal Festival Hall in London, where for 9 years he produced the Meltdown Festival, working closely with artists including David Bowie, Patti Smith, Jarvis Cocker, Massive Attack and Ornette Coleman. 

Today, Vanderwolf is unleashing his fourth single “Colston” and video, off of his upcoming LP titled The Great BewildermentThe “Colston” music video delves into themes of rebellion and revolt with historic statues of known slave traders being dismantled while Vanderwolf guides us through an 80s pop-inspired montage of the scene.

Describing the single, Vanderwolf says, “I recognised those protesters in Bristol that tossed the statue of slave-trader, Charles Colston into the murky Bristol waters. I knew people just like them from my time attending protests in the UK. I had marched with people like this in London –usually attracted to their blasting of drum and bass music. And I recognised Bristol — a city I really miss. It all really connected. And I was especially happy — because I had worked with 3D and Daddy G on Massive Attack’s Meltdown in 2008. They were the ones who first told me about Colston and when they explained that they never play Colston Hall in their hometown. Finally they changed the name to Bristol Beacon. History marches on.”

“Colston” was directed by Dave Rygalski, whose illustrious career started in late night television comedy (Letterman, Daily Show, Leno-era Tonight Show) and have branched out to the music world having directed the concert film, Sam Phillips Live at Largo, as well as music videos for The Royal Arctic Institute, Das Damen, and Happy Chichester.

As complex and bewildering as the world is right now, The Great Bewilderment can be a better world to explore across these richly rewarding songs, offering fresh insight with each listen. Speaking more on the LP, Vanderwolf says, “My favorite albums bring a lot of elements and don’t stay in one place. I love albums like Songs In The Key Of Life, The White Album, various Bowie and Pink Floyd records. I hope to take you through several scenes with various characters, bringing you to the end after you’ve traveled through time and space.” 

The Great Bewilderment LP is out now. 


You mention the song being inspired by your time in Bristol and your work with 3D and Daddy G on Massive Attack’s Meltdown in 2008, are there any Bristol based artists that influence your song writing?

Of course. I asked Adrian Utley of Portishead to play guitar on my record. They are surely one of the most important bands of their era – and the fact that their signature guitarist is on my record sends me reeling with delight. He performs on a track called, Gaza – originally written in 2016 when I was still living London. I still have the original recording of myself playing those opening chords on a Gretsch hollow body with heft dose of tremolo. I was definitely inspired by Adrian’s work with Portishead. 

Can you expand on the production and artist vision for the song/music video? 

As opposed to the other videos I’ve released this one is pretty straightforward- it’s a commentary on how monuments present a set of values that often become incongruous with the society in which they sit.  I must admit as happy as I am to see confederate generals and slave-traders like Colston torn-down and reassessed for the racists they are – I am uneasy with rewriting history or erasing history. So that is why we also have statues of seemingly benevolent cultural heroes – Gandhi, The Beatles, Geroge M Cohan— will we tear down these cultural icons too one day?

What other artists are you listening to write now?

This past weekend I was at the Big Ears festival, so I’ve just seen incredible sets by Fred Frith, Beth Orton, Kassa Overalll, Andre 3000, Yasmin Williams, Brad Mehldau, Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, Ceramic Dog,  Kronos Quartet and so many more. Laurie Anderson’s set – with the band Sexmob was one of the most powerful concerts I’ve ever seen. 40 years later and she’s still the artist of the future.


Editor In Chief: Prince Chenoa (@princechenoastudio)

Feature Editor: Taylor Winter Wilson (@taylorwinter)

Gimme More

Do You Like?

Some things are only found on Facebook. Don't miss out.