Vulture Whale | Birmingham, Alabama


second record

bamboo you e.p.

“And if they can take what they’ve learned from the EP (Bamboo You) and build on what they did on the LP, the sky’s the limit.”
QRO Magazine

“I picked this band’s debut album as one of the best records of 2009. Then there’s this amazing EP. Vulture Whale are the best new band of 2009, it’s official.”
Berkeley Place

“For their latest EP, Bamboo You, they’ve donned their best British accents striking a delightfully wry note. It’s no joke, though—what could be a risky gimmick that they execute with precision, proving you don’t have to sound serious to mean something.”

“Alabama’s Vulture Whale features the band singing in fake British accents? I’m surprised how fast I forgot about the whole “concept” of it and got lost in how great of a knock off it really was.”
Stranger Dance

“The six-song set is an homage to British rock ‘n’ roll and even goes so far as to have frontman Wes McDonald singing in a faux British accent throughout. The premise might sound cheesy but actually the idea works out nicely.”
Campus Circle

“I like what I hear alot – raucous guitar rock, mixed with vocal Strokes-isms, Replacements rush, Pollard British accents and more. Definitely worth a listen for the indie garage rocker inside you.”
Waved Rumor

“The songs are nervy post-Seinfeld punk, small moments (like having to wait on some slowpoke to get ready to go out for the night) blown up into absurd drama, propelled by a taught guitar squall.”
American Songwriter

“Vulture Whale may be the best rock band you haven’t heard. Following two excellent self-titled records, Bamboo You is another solid installment from these Alabama rockers and shifts gears, if only slightly for the band. Frontman Wes McDonald and his crew have mastered the sort of rock music you might have heard on Matador in the mid-’90s, but the band imbued it with its own southern shuffle.”
Pop Matters

“Bamboo You, the group’s latest EP is simply fun, fun, all the way through. Yes, there are raw, guttural guitars and a rhythm section holding down beats that get the hips shaking of their own volition. Yet, the British affectations lend themselves to a style of singing and playing around with words that couldn’t be pulled off otherwise. I mean, lyrics like ‘I’d like to do it but I’m still kind of new at it’ just wouldn’t work the same way in a southern accent.”

“Enthrilling, exciting, rockn’rollish…this should be an instant ‘britpop’-collectors item, if you ask me. Thousands of references.”

“Birmingham, Alabama’s eccentric rockers Vulture Whale not only cranked out their Bamboo You EP, but truly morphed into a legitly tasteful pretend British band influenced by American music (think Guided By Voices). All six songs waver between humorous and deeply inspirational, complimented by frontman Wes McDonald’s entertaining faux British accent.”
The KEXP Blog

“For the six songs on Bamboo You, Vulture Whale combines its brand of eccentric rock with its love of British music like The Stone Roses, Blur and The Smiths, as well as classic British rock bands like The Who and The Rolling Stones.”

“Vulture Whale music is rock and roll embodied. I can see these guys inspiring mosh pits across the spots they play and having droves of groupies. The music is energetic, drop kick you in the mouth, jagger-ish vocals set to a dazzling and sweetly created noise bubble with just enough of that punk angst.”

“The band’s energy is shown in its light-hearted humor and witty banter — Wes (McDonald) insists he uses a vacuum as his main musical inspiration. The cheery quartet is known for putting on shows that leave everyone — including themselves — happy.”
The Red and Black (Athens, GA)

second record

second record

“The quartet kicks out chunks of riff-heavy, good ol’ rock with a raw, two-guitar attack of bluesy swagger backed by pummeling drums but stuffed with memorable melodies. It’s gritty rock ‘n’ roll fused with punk from the Heart of Dixie.”
Sync Weekly (Fayetteville), July 09

“”All its pleasures are surprises. Its surprises seem endless because you somehow can’t keep it off repeat…their latest record (that would be Vulture Whale) is one of the most consistently enjoyable (records) I’ve heard this year.”
Heart on a Stick (blog), May 09

“Don’t let anyone tell you that the Vulture Whale is not real. Trust me. It’s real.”
Tuscaloosa News / April 09

“Their self-titled* album is with out a doubt a willin’ road trip I would leave blaring out the car windows.”
The Color Green / April 09

“This album is the second self-titled release by the band, but when you’ve got a name as perfectly rock sounding as Vulture Whale, why would you need any other title? Especially when the second Vulture Whale is arguably the most compelling rock record of a young 2009.”
PopMatters, April 09

“Musically, Vulture Whale creates a sprawling twang that allows McDonald’s narratives to expertly shuck and give. Sure there’s a Southerner’s love of Hank Williams and bluesy licks, but The Replacements gassed glory, and the woozy, whammy bar attack of My Bloody Valentine are as vitally important-and Vulture Whale let them lovingly stew.”
Thicket, March/April 09

“Vulture Whale is the Saturday night record you’ve been waiting for, from a band you should have been rocking out to long ago.”
Flagpole, March 09

“A fabulously fun, well-written record.”
Berkeley Place / March 09

“The music on the new self-titled CD is sonically thick; every square-inch of the album’s soundscape is filled to bursting with colors and the small intricate flourishes you wouldn’t expect to find on such a rowdy collection of songs.”
Skope, March 09

“But amidst the straightforward, fist-pumping romps is a keen sense of melody; “Head Turner” in particular is equally catchy as anything KROQ has recently promoted…”
Spectrum, Feb. 09

“With catchy melodies, plainspoken lyrics and killer riffers, Whale Whale are up-and-comers. This band is one to keep an eye on, folks.”
In Tune Daily News, Feb. 09

“…Vulture Whale’s rock ‘n’ roll good-time spirits are infectious.”
QRO Magazine, Feb. 09

“unassuming lunks who know how to stir up a bracing, humid, two-guitar racket with a pinch of bluesy ass-shake and plenty of peaty prettiness.”
Blender, Feb. 09

“So it is that when I heard there’s a band called Vulture Whale I said to myself “self-fulfilling prophecies be damned, a band called Vulture Whale has gotta kick ass.” And indeed my brethren the shit is live.”
Last Plane to Jakarta, Jan. 09

“Spellbinding frontman Wes McDonald gives his wild-eyed tales a real sizzle, spitting tortured emotions in a funky sneer, offering insults (“You look good for a woman your age”) and existential reflection (“I’ve ’bout tried everything but dying and being quiet”) with the same itchy angst. The dude could use a sympathetic ear (or a tranquilizer).”
Spin Magazine, Jan. 09

“There are sly referential moments like that all over the album, from sinewy Bowie worship to Replacements-like post-teen angst to a Jagger-ish bluesy swagger, to the swing-tempo, call-and-response jump blues of “Guillotine,” which updates Cab Calloway for the new millennium.”
Jersey Beat, Feb. 09

“The quartet make no mistakes that this is a no frills straight forward rock record that has catchy melodies, in your face guitar and pounding drums that all combine for a good time and an incentive to come back for more.”
The Fire Note, Jan. 09

“While listening to this…we can’t help but think that the guys in this band put on one hell of a live show for their fans.”
LMNOP/Babysue, Feb. 09

“With a no frills and straightforward sound, Vulture Whale is immediately worth the purchase, and like a loud civil war bugle horn sounded from way up north down to Alabama, my envious and vicarious enjoyment thickens with this album in my arsenal.”
Citizendick, Jan. 09

“This is music to drive to. Get into. Go get it. Go see them. Go for it!”
Omni Plug, Feb. 09

“…these Alabama club rats rock like Kings of Leon minus the ass-waggin’. ”
Spin Magazine, Dec. 08

“The album is rough and raw, but that’s the nature of their music. It has that kind of an edge to it… the new Vulture Whale would make an excellent road trip soundtrack.”
Static, Dec. 08

“Vulture Whale have perfected a formula here of quirky lyrics matched by a punk rock energy on top of the easy melodic, rockabilly hooks. Buy this album, draw the curtains, lock the doors, and air-guitar away as you bounce on your bed.”
Power of Pop, Nov. 08

“Based way down South in Birmingham, Ala., a city with a burgeoning rock ‘n’ roll scene, Vulture Whale’s no-bullshit, balls-out rock ‘n’ roll energy — delivered with a slight Southern twang and power-pop sensibilities — provides a showcase for the blue-collar, lyrical honesty of Wes McDonald.”
Goldmine, Nov. 08

first record

first record

“…an entertaining collection of rock songs.”
3.5 out 5 stars
All Music Guide

“…the band has some promising possibilities.”
4 out of 5 stars
Orlando Sentinel Pop Music Critic

“…an album that is not only accessible, but a fun and memorable listen.”
Daily Vanguard, Portland State University

“…eccentric, funky, inspired, and inventive.”

“Gripping pop hooks that fuse Alabama’s charm with New York’s urban gritty rock ‘n’ roll. Good stuff!”
Smother Magazine

“…pure rock and roll goodness where rockabilly, classic Southern rock, and indie rock live together in a secretive polygamist marriage.”
Erasing Clouds

“this is about rocking.”
Music Spectrum

“Britpop by way of Alabama…I’m curious where these folks will be in a year or two.”
A&A Reviews

“Really great indie rock from Wes McDonald. Kinda like Polak run-up with Dinosaur Jr.”
Hybrid Magazine

“Vulture Whale gets it right with this self-titled debut.”
Delusions of Adequacy

“…this is a band I wish I could see live.”
Asheville Disclaimer