As an Atlanta native, there is nothing I like so much as to see my hometown contribute something legitimately good to the cultural landscape. With so many of my favorite bands coming from Brooklyn or L.A. or remote mid-western locations, I sometimes feel guilty that I don’t know more of the emerging musicians in my own city. In an attempt to change that, I made a short trip to The Masquerade last night and heard the super-talented new band Wolves.
Although they had four musicians on stage last night, Wolves is essentially a duo, made up of Kyle Dreaden, singing lead vocals and playing the keyboard, and percussionist Zak Ray. Founded in 2011, Wolves is working quickly, having released their first full-length album this past April. The album, titled Youth, is a short eight tracks, but what the album may lack in length, it makes up for in production value and apparent passion.
Last night’s performance, opening for the bands Empires and Mona, found Wolves putting out a tight, energetic set. Lead singer Dreaden was incredibly animated, stalking back and forth on the stage as though he were headlining for thousands, not opening to a crowd of 50 or so. This is a good quality, as the crowd was quickly won over by this band they had most likely never heard of or planned to see.
While Youth, as a recorded album, comes across as fairly standard alt-rock with a few nice instrumental flourishes, Wolves’ live performance had more indie notes, sounding almost like The National at times and hitting the feeling of great alternative/post-punk bands like Interpol throughout. Although the sound is not new, Wolves distinguish themselves as a new band by sheer attitude and talent.
This is a band I would definitely pay to see again and I hope to see much more of them in the coming year. Their album, Youth, is available for free download from their site, here.