Discover The Undiscovered: Wolf Ram Heart
By Staff on June 11, 2012
Welcome to our June edition of Discover The Undiscovered; we’re excited to introduce Wolf Ram Heart.
Photo by Courtney Galyk
Wolf Ram Heart is an American pop group whose members are split between the Appalachian foothills of southeastern Ohio and the urban metropolis of Columbus. This is a band bent on marrying art with popular music. Retro-futuristic best defines their sound that straddles neo-psychedelia and dark art synthesizer pop. The music is an all encompassing hybrid of pop's faded echoing sensibilities, molded... into a modern space, and created in a sound that allows these hauntings to occur and transform.
MP3: Betrayal of Hearts
Who are your main influences?
I (David James) have always had a fondness for word play, repeated words, repetitious passages, descriptions used out of place. It's drawn me lyrically to artists like Syd Barrett, Robert Pollard and Scott Walker.They would be my top three study books. Walls of sounds or that tipping point before it's just too much is where I like to breathe when I'm trying to sculpt something in sounds. People like Brian Wilson, Phil Spector or George Martin come to mind as producers I have admired and think about when I'm working. They are like ghosts and kings. In the end, I believe no one could ever match the eclecticism of The Beatles but I try. Finally there's the feeling you get when you see the two twins at the end of the hall at the Overlook Hotel. That always seems to do it for me.
How did you meet?
I met my future wife (bassist) Jessica Barnes through an obscenely boring ad on Craigslist. Looking for someone into Brian Eno and The Velvet Underground blah blah blah. She joined, seven months later we were married and then I made her buy a Rickenbacker and more tights. Rob Cave, another Craigslist acquisition, all ready married, credentials: classically trained pianist, current position in band: Rick-Wakemen-type character able to play four parts with two hands, obsessed with Duran Duran. Enter then Ryan Stolte-Sawa (violinist - multi instrumentalist). We asked her and her violin to join us onstage for a show and later tricked her into joining the band by making her come to a press shoot. She is Canadian so we are still trying to figure her out. Next there is Eric Buford (The
Drummer) who I met when he was only in high school. Incidentally the same high school Kim and Kelley Deal of the Breeders came from. He was in a metal band called "Distorted Visions" and was always wearing Smashing Pumpkins shirts, it was the 90's. We've been in all kinds of bands together since then including a terrible Oasis tribute band called Onasis. Lastly I (David James) (writer - vocalist - producer) as a youth had many surgeries that left me in bed. Got so obsessed with The Beach Boys that I use to wear Hawaiian shirts in eighth grade and made people call me Brian.
Later I spent my early twenties trying to look like Damon Albarn but didn't change my name. I also use to play in a group that worked with Nick Rhodes from Duran Duran and I'm convinced that is the real reason Rob is still in the band.
What is your biggest achievement as a band to date?
It took me a year and a half to complete our debut album, "Betrayal of Hearts". Six months of that time was probably just mixing. I have problems. I'm a control freak, I'm a perfectionist, I'm a virgo. When it was finished, I really didn't think I could let it go and that really would have been fine for me. If I could, trust me, I would still be working on it. A few of the songs on that record were locked in my mind for years. Releasing it was some kinda therapy. On the record, there are many dark themes within and a melancholy me at the center in there somewhere. I did it all from the heart and it's nice to know that many people so far have embraced it.
Where did the band name originate?
Years ago I was in a band and had the idea to release three albums called The Wolf, The Ram and The Heart. Each record would have music that would follow musically the lines of the titles. Well I never got to that point so after that group came to an end. I decided to steal my own idea and go with Wolf Ram Heart. The original idea was based off of an episode of the Angel television series, remember Buffy the Vampire Slayer? Well it was a spinoff of that. There was an evil law firm run by demons called Wolfram & Hart. Well that was in 2010. What's bad is that then it seemed every group had some damn animal name and made us look like some trendy Wolf band. So there you go, our name at least it has some legitimacy!
I'll only pick a few or I'll be here all day. Bat for Lashes, love the look, love the vibe. She webs elegant fairy tales and synthesizers. Guided by Voices, they were my Velvet Underground. Had the fortune of being there in Dayton when it all happened. Excellent lyrics and phrasing almost like a drunk Paul McCartney. The Zombies, Colin Blunstone has the voice of an angel. Hopefully one day more people will learn the error of their ways for not owning their shining pop ruby,"Odyssey and Oracle". Scott Walker, my god "Big Louise" still gives me goose bumps. What a man, what a voice.
Breathtaking orchestral arrangements, odd and disturbing subject matter. The Monkees, yeah they were put together, then fired everyone who told them what to do; theirs is a true rock and roll story. They turned me on to reverb and were the first band to use a Moog synthesizer.
Michael Nesmith is a genius and was way ahead of his time. Lastly Slowdive, Layers upon layers of weepiness and heart strings that touch me deep on some basic fundamental level. It's the music of the gods, the gates opening, the trumpets commanding!
Plans to Tour?
NXNE June 13th @ Monarch Tavern // 11pm
NXNE June 16th @ C'est What? // 11pm
Plans for next release?
Our second record is currently in preproduction and will be released sometime in 2013. We hope to release a deluxe edition vinyl of "Betrayal of Hearts" in the near future.