Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.


The first thing I ever heard about Wolf Parade was from the Arcade Fire?s Win Butler who said something like that they were the best band in Montreal or the best band he?d heard in years. Knowing that Win is into very little indie-rock I was curious to hear what set Wolf Parade apart. The first time I saw them play, they were opening for the Arcade Fire in Toronto and I liked them, though Elvis Costello and David Bowie jumped out too immediately as influences. Then I heard ?Sons and Daughters of Hungry Ghosts? and Wolf Parade went from being a band I was interested in, one with potential to do something good, to a band whose future output I wait for impatiently.

Upon listening to the tracks from their CBC session, I was struck by the sheer distinctiveness of Spencer?s voice - something that I didn?t take in listening to ?Sons and Daughters,? a song whose vocal sermonizing seemed so integral to the perfect whole. On lesser songs, the vocals can seem over the top and affected. His voice is both an asset and a liability; it goes some distance in giving the band its own sound, but also demands that the songs be strong enough to support it, so that the vocal style does not immediately become cliched.

Wolf Parade - "I'll Believe In Anything, You'll Believe In Anything"

My editor, Max Maki says that this song reminds her of Sharon, Lois and Bram. I don?t know what she?s talking about, of course, but in the spirit of sharing...

Wolf Parade - "Unknown Title"

The band?s other vocalist sounds exactly like Isaac Brock and Bruce Springsteen.

Posted by Jordan at February 4, 2005 5:11 AM

jordan: i love you.

Posted by george at February 4, 2005 9:27 AM

what till you hear the subpop release. then you'll get excited.


Posted by robin at February 4, 2005 10:34 AM

so i've heard

Posted by george at February 4, 2005 10:42 AM

Arlen handled production, it's a really clear record, not holding the garage feel of the demos, it has a distance to the room tone, but everything is so clear you get to hear much more then when they play live. Plus the album are is going to be like nothing else.

Posted by robin at February 4, 2005 10:48 AM

does arlen sing? i thought it was spencer and dan...

anyway, these...are...awesome!!!

where are these from and is there more? has anyone recorded any of the shows? i need more wolf parade. thanks.

Posted by jim at February 4, 2005 12:08 PM

Since the LP's in the pipe, I'm assuming it has a release date? Anybody know it? (In an interesting twist of fate, this band was my introduction to the Arcade Fire, and not vice versa.)

Posted by Paul at February 4, 2005 1:47 PM

you can listen to the whole set here:

my "friend of a friend" dude at sub pop says june for a release date. it was gonna be earlier but they pushed it back. i guess it'll be sub pop's big summer album.

Posted by Anonymous at February 4, 2005 4:08 PM

I'm obviously missing something here. The lead vocalist is not someone I could listen to for a whole song, let alone a whole album.

But I think a lot of people into the indie scene are a lot more forgiving than I am. I can't stand the dude fro mArcade Fire when he screams, yet I love the slower "Kettles". Ditto for Bright Eyes.

I usually get worried when I read reviews and there's mention of the vocals having "raw, unspoken emotion" (to quote the pretentious pitchfork), so the comment for this band sort of prepared me.


Posted by aaron at February 4, 2005 4:51 PM

Weird, I thought Dan was the only one who sang- good to know that Spencer handles the vocal duties too. So- on that second EP, maybe some of you know- who sings 'It's a Curse'? Is it Dan?

Posted by Kevin at February 4, 2005 4:57 PM

Man, it's all about Atlas Strategic's "Chicken Shack". But the new Wolf Parade will be, in the parlance of our times, "off of the hook".

Posted by Jay Watts III at February 4, 2005 7:09 PM

finally, some recognition for wolf parade. ive been pimping them too everyone i know. got both their eps, cant wait for the full length.

Posted by ak at February 4, 2005 9:24 PM

aaron, you're not alone. no matter how many songs i hear by wolf parade, i'm still not impressed. their music just doesn't grab me somehow.

which is strange considering how much i love arcade fire.

Posted by roz at February 5, 2005 4:09 AM

That IS strange, considering they're both similar to and better than The Arcade Fire.

Posted by Paul at February 5, 2005 2:10 PM

The unknown song is titled 'Shine A Light'.

Posted by Nate at February 5, 2005 6:37 PM

Are all the tracks down for downloading? I just want to hear what they sound like, but the links don't work. :(

Posted by e at February 6, 2005 4:38 AM

weirdly, i can stream but not download the tracks. it seems to be happening on other mp3 blogs that use .mac accounts for their hosting. arghhhhh...

Posted by catherine at February 7, 2005 12:11 AM

i had this trubble using firefox (couldn't right-click-save-as), but not with internet explorer. weird.

Posted by beardofbees at February 7, 2005 10:30 AM

Just found this site, absolutely LOVE the music, thanks so much and keep up the work!

Posted by John at February 7, 2005 11:13 AM

I haven't been following the discussion on this site or in audioblogland, but did you see the New York Times's article Sunday on Canadian bands? Featured story in the Arts and Leisure section. Looked a little deadly, and the display type really played up the "hey, Canada has music?" angle.

And you're absolutely correct about the vocals amplifying the great songs and just sounding ridiculous on the lesser ones. But you're out of your mind if you think that sounds like Bruce Springsteen.

Posted by Wm. at February 7, 2005 9:23 PM

hey where is everybody?
wintersleep is another canadian band deserving of attention, found them here.

Posted by winsome losesome at February 9, 2005 2:25 PM

FUCK OFF. Wintersleep is most certainly not the "next Arcade Fire", nor the next Wolf Parade, nor the next anything but another footnote in the long and unmentionable history of terrible Halifax bands. It's like there's some sort of equalization payment system at work in the Canadian record industry, hoisting neutered maritimes bands onto the rest of us. Ugh. Sick. Fuck. I saw them here in Montreal. I felt molested.

Posted by Jay Watts III at February 9, 2005 2:53 PM

that's all we need, some FUCKING know it all giving his opinion. unfortunately one based only on what he 'likes' (not intelligence or viewing something with an open mind) -- typical of some 15 - 25 year old who thinks he has seen everything and knows it all. this is for you jay watts the THIRD. i won't say it a second time and definitely not a IIIrd.

Posted by winsome losesome at February 9, 2005 3:21 PM

If your defense of this band rests on the crux that it is imperative to view things with an "open mind", well, then...

Posted by Jay Watts III at February 9, 2005 3:54 PM

Anyone know anything about Atlas Strategic, the band that Dan of Wolf Parade used to be in? I ordered an album of theirs recently but it won't arrive for a little while yet. Are they good? Did they put out much music?

Also, what's the story with Wolf Parade currently? There's virtually no information (terrible pun not intended) on the internet about them or their current comings and goings. I read somewhere that Spencer is playing with Destroyer/Frog Eyes in Europe right now.

Posted by Sam at February 9, 2005 9:35 PM

Mr. Know It All can field that...

Atlas Strategic put out two albums, the one that you ordered was certainly their debut album, put out by Global Symphonic. The second one they pressed themselves, it's called "That's Familiar" is 8 tracks long, and includes a cover of Jimi Hendrix' "Soul Food." Wolf Parade play a song off of that album "National Flag" under a different name, off the top of my head "The National People's Scare", I believe... The Atlas Strategic version is on my blog, and I'll be posting some other Atlas stuff soon, too - like some tracks from their last performance, when they had Jeffrey Alport drumming with them. I'm quite a fan - Dan's the premier songwriter and the songs are very, very strong, with more of a Screamin' Jay Hawkins bend to them, especially the first album.

Spencer is in Europe right now touring with Destroyer and Frog Eyes, and Wolf Parade should be ready to promote their album when Haji returns, sometime in April or May if I recall.

Posted by Jay Watts III at February 9, 2005 10:00 PM

the best is "grounds for divorce". I have both their EP's. oh man. they're pretty sweet in concert, too.

Posted by Nate at February 10, 2005 6:17 PM

Wintersleep - what is it about this band? I don't know what it is. People either completely fucking love them or are completely mystified why people love them. I'm in the latter camp. I've seen them live THREE TIMES. Walked out on them twice. They're super-nice dudes and are doing very good things for the East Coast scene (there's absolutely NOTHING wrong with Maritime music by the way) but what am I missing?

Also: the lyrics are BRUTAL.

Posted by Tim at February 11, 2005 4:20 PM

Also, who are these supposed parade of crap from the Maritimes? I'm going to school in the Maritimes. There is some fantastic music here. It ain't Wintersleep, but still.

Posted by Tim at February 11, 2005 4:21 PM

So, there's 2 singers!? WTF. They sound so alike!

Posted by chris at May 1, 2005 10:25 PM

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Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

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