Cry Cry Cry
It’s always hard to predict who will stick around when a band calls an indefinite hiatus. Not every group’s work stands the test of time, and irrelevance sometimes seems imminent for even the most promising of acts if they take too much time to themselves. Wolf Parade tried their luck this year, releasing their first full length album after seven years, and apparently their dedicated “Wolf Pack” of fans hadn’t budged since 2010. The Montreal indie rockers were warmly welcomed back to the music scene they had such an integral part in almost a decade ago.
Band leaders Spencer Krug and Dan Boeckner have always had a knack for sharing the spotlight. Each member always finds a way to showcase their own unique style of composition throughout every tune, complimenting each other’s sensibilities and resulting in an wholly unique sound. Their distinct vocals and raw instrumentation have always been a highlight of Wolf Parades sound. Boeckner and Krug have kept this dynamic in the forefront of their newest release Cry Cry Cry.
Cry Cry Cry features a moody uncompromising collection of songs from start to finish with huge choruses and cutting guitar licks. A truly apt addition to the bands now cherished catalogue. Opening with a love-it-or-hate-it brooding ballad, “Lazarus Online” , this is an emotional track featuring a solid arrangement, but probably not the best introduction to this collection of otherwise energetic rock pieces. The following tracks are a memorable return to form, a highlight being the albums single “Valley Boy”. Krug’s unmistakable trembling vocals and bold synth tones draw vintage post-punk comparisons, while Boeckner’s more straight forward rock vocals ground the collection of songs and create a great contrast throughout the album.
Wolf Parade came to prominence amidst some of Canada’s greatest indie rock acts such as Arcade Fire and Broken Social Scene. A definitive style emerged from this era with moody songwriting, loose airy production and raw emotional vocals. These values are still ever present on Cry Cry Cry. Tracks like “Incantation” and “Am I An Alien Here” are great examples of these aesthetics, and a couple more highlights from the album.
For the casual fan of Wolf Parade, their more progressive and experimental side may come as a bit of a surprise. This is one aspect that sets the group apart from many of their contemporaries. Serious chops and abstract solos can be found throughout the six minute jammer of a track “Baby Blue”, bolstering piercing harmonized guitar solos, along with too many synths to keep track of, and as always a loose and heavy drum beat beneath it all.
Cry Cry Cry may not capture the pure excitement and rawness of “Apologies to the Queen Mary”; but it contains more than enough spirit and innovation to delight the dedicated “Wolf Pack” who have long awaited the group’s return.
SPILL ALBUM REVIEW: WOLF PARADE – CRY CRY CRY