It's a well-known fact that most band names are essentially gobbledygook, but here at Rocks Off we're doing our best to find meaning in the oddest monikers.
My absolute favorite kind of music is stuff that isn't in any way goth, but sounds like it should be. Especially if it leans towards the country or blues end of the spectrum. Part of it is because I really think the next evolution of goth with be a more stripped down, acoustic thing, but it's more because I listened to Garth Brooks' "The Thunder Rolls" on an endless loop as a child and that kind of brain damage doesn't heal no matter how much you drink.
Fight cell death with cell death. I've always said that.
So let's look at my new best friends, We Are Wombat. Someone get the True Blood people on the phone and call their mothers slatterns until they agree to put "Delzo Spells" in Season 6.
It's the kind of tune you just know someone will eventually overdose while listening to, all delta blues guitar lines and talk of falling down the rabbit hole. They say every man can ascend to the arms of the Lord, but I postulate that you can tell the irrevocably damned by the tone of a tune. We Are Wombat is going straight to hell in a blaze of dark glory.
But that name...
We. Are. Wombat... We. Are. Fucking. Wombat. That is one of the most ridiculous names that I have ever come across in the course of this column. Holy McMoly, a wombat is an endangered, fat-bottomed rodent that exists solely to teach kids the letter W. How on Earth am I supposed to make word-love over a band's black majesty when they insist on calling themselves We Are Wombat?
There had to be something deeper behind it than that. I got in touch with keyboardist and singer Ryan Schulze to see if there was something, anything that would help me save face here.
"It all started as a joke," says Schulze, a bit unnecessarily. "I had a rent house three years ago that our friends would all hangout at. One day Zack [Cherry, banjo] came over with a brand-new banjo and Kyle [Clemmons, guitar] said 'Woah....We Are Wombat.'
"And ever since then Wombat has been steady doin' its thang," Schulze continues. "To me We Are Wombat is a blanket for everything, whether everything wants to be blanketed or not. It's under that damn blanket. We are, you are and your mom is Wombat."