Local Love: We Were Wolves
By David H.
One of the coolest parts about this job, is that it affords you the ability to write about pretty much whatever you want. It’s not too often that when I catch a band live, their sound strikes such a chord inside me; that I feel compelled to convey that emotion to a wider audience. One such act that recently did just that, is We Were Wolves.
I don’t think I’ve ever heard someone compliment a band like Scott H. Biram did on the night We Were Wolves opened for him downstairs at Fitz. “Damn, these guys are a good fit for my crowd,” he remarked. You have to understand, that though Biram will howl through a bullet mic, he’s a rather soft spoken guy in close company. He was right, they really ignited the stage and put on a hell of a show. We Were Wolves reminded me of Queens of The Stone Age, when I saw them on the “Rated R” tour. Raw, heavy, and melodic without a stitch of compromise. It’s as if someone heard me bitch over the years about the lack of real rock bands in existence today. There are metal bands, bands who look like rockers, and bands who are loud; but no one since QOTSA with that total growl across the board from sound, vocals, and attitude. However, at first listen, it seemed like We Were Wolves got the message loud and clear, and they were sent to Houston to bring Rock N’ Roll back from the ashes.
Recently, Business insider ranked Beaumont, Texas as the fourth most miserable city in America to live. For me, I took it to heart, as I have relatives in Beaumont. From an outsider looking in, Beaumont has always appeared to be pretty much “what you see, is what you get.” No pretension, no frills, just good blue collar workers who drink Lone Star because it’s cheap; not because it’s hip & cool. It’s a place where if I were from there, I’d try like hell to get out as soon as possible, while keeping my friends and the principles I grew up with close. So, when I found out that We Were Wolves gave up a hopeless existence of barbecues, beer, and fishing trips fueled by the ability to have a “good job;” in Beaumont for big city livin’ in Houston; it all made sense. I’m not knocking Beaumont in any way. It’s just that for Houstonians, Beaumont is nowhere. But, that’s a good thing. Because, in the history of rock n’ roll, the best bands have come from places others called nowhere as well. Nirvana, Queens of The Stone Age, and Black Sabbath all came from places where “the norm” wasn’t what the members wanted.
The end result of growing up in Beaumont, and all of the life around it; is ever present on their new album, “Wolf House.” There’s never a dull moment, and album’s lyrics have the overall feel of feeling hopeless in a hopeless place. Once again, that’s not a bad thing. Because you aren’t paying attention to the lyrics when you’re driving down the highway at ninety miles an hour with “Wolf House” blaring out of the car. No one in the band is anything less than a great musician. The drums from Zach sound like they do on The Sword’s “Age of Winters” album; that dynamic range that so few drummers can achieve. Lush and fully formed riffs rhythmically move the songs along as if they were penned by Josh Homme himself. The solos from Vinc squeal through the songs like the air is getting cut by a giant samurai; while the dual vocals from Drew and Jake howl through the night like a damsel in distress. In the end, you’ve banged your head enough to cause neck damage, but you’re happy for the chance to. I wish I could tell you there’s a stand alone track, but I seriously feel like all of the songs are great. Whether it’s the jammed and melodic rhythm to “Heavy Shrimp,” the riff heavy hooks to “Strange Mud,” or even the house party vibe to “Crash and Burn;” “Wolf House” does what it was meant to do, rock.
Few bands today sound like they have a purpose, much less do they have the chops to back it up. Luckily for you, We Were Wolves will be throwing down the rock n’ roll hammer on Saturday December 14th at Warehouse Live. Tickets are a paltry five bucks, and there are even a strong list of openers in Infinite Apaches, Not In The Face, and The Ramblin Boys. The doors are at 8:00 and the show starts at 9:00. This is definitely a “must see” show that you’re foolish to miss. You can grab a physical copy of “Wolf House” and grab a shirt too. Because after you see We Were Wolves live, you’ll want everyone to know you witnessed rock’s return out of nowhere, literally.