CD review WHEEL ‘Moving Backwards’

(8/10) Wheel is the brainchild of James Lascelles, a musician from the UK who moved to Finland. Arrived in Helsinki, Lascelles found with Mikko Määtä (b), Santeri Saksala (d) und Saku Mattila (g) some brothers in mind. Mattila was later on replaced by Roni Seppänen and Wheel, as we know the band today, was ready to go.

‘Moving Backwards’ is following two EP’s that has been released earlier. The full-length debut hits the shelves in February this year and offers seven well-crafted songs. It isn’t an easy exercise to describe Wheel’s music since it’s based on many influences.

‘Vultures’ is the kicking off the album with a heavy stoner rock riff. It’s a returning element of the opener that interacts with a calmer verse. After such a spot on start into the album it’s ‘Wheel’ that shows the song writing skills of Lascelles very well. We’re talking about a 10 minutes epos that doesn’t come with any dull moment. The song comprises of sections of fragile calmness as well is heavy outbursts and ‘Wheel’ isn’t an exception. The following ‘Tyrant’ also crosses a 10 minutes line. Wheel generates big soundscapes that partly reflect some grunge influences. The great things with these two masterpieces is that they are done in a way that creates excitement with the listener from start to end.

‘Up the Chain’ is focuses on a strong groove and a powerful beat, including a more simple but thrilling riffing. The dark aspects of Wheel’s sound are reflected by ‘Skeletons’, which is a four minutes instrumental, leading to ‘Where the Pieces Lie’, which hits hard again with stoner rock meeting grunge meeting progressive structures. ‘Lacking’ is the title of the nine minutes closing exercise that ends Wheel’s debut in a Tool-ish fashion. It’s a again the bigger soundscape that perfectly harmonise with excellently done guitar parts.

‘Moving Backwards’ is, in Wheels’ perspective, definitely a step forward. The debut is a thrilling combination of various genres and what counts even more is the fact that things fit together extremely well. This album contains good music that slowly unfolds with each time spinning this album.



  1. Vultures
  2. Wheel
  3. Tyrant
  4. Up The Chain
  5. Skeletons
  6. Where the Pieces Lie
  7. Lacking

Label: Odyssey Music

Genre: Modern Progressive Metal

Release Date EU: February 22nd, 2019



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