Sean Parker is back as Only Wolf, bringing his lone wolf, psych-folk approach to his first full-length release since his 2014 debut. Broody and sparse, Trust loses some of the edge that marked Chemicals, sinking slowly into moody lyrics and rhythms as it rolls through the album’s eight tracks.
“Ruminative music” is how the album is pitched, and it’s a well-chosen word to describe Parker’s meditations on contemporary life and desires. “So you take what you want/ I don’t know why you don’t know this at all?/ And you don’t know why I don’t want it at all,” he murmurs, both plaintive and patient on opener, and 2016 single, “Pirate Drones.”
The beat in titular “Trust” comes out as the muted churning of wheels on a track as you pass through the city late at night on your way home—or somewhere else. Slow-timed, it’s meant for those after-midnight hours when everything feels still and clear. In contrast, “Forest Fire” opens with a pulsing beat, racing onward into the song as a stripped down rhythm that could easily spark a dance as it moves in and out of Parker’s vocals—an embodiment of flame as it rises and flickers, sinking low and bursting up suddenly, even as Parker’s subdued voice lends a sense of trepidation to the energetic movements.
“Around” is another track that lives up to its rhythmic name, followed by a slow turn that moves the album into closer “Silence.” The winding track puts the finishing touches on Parker’s hypnotic sophomore album, luring you further in just before letting go.
Top Tracks: “Forest Fire”; “Silence”
Rating: Strong Hoot (Good)