On the second morning of SXSW I mustered up the energy to roll out of bed to see Peter Wolf Crier’s set at The Muzzle Of Bees party. I had listened to an advanced copy of Inter-Be while at work and wasn’t able to get a firm grasp on the music with all the distractions.‚ I was not prepared to be blown away in Austin.
Consisting of Peter Pisano and Brian Moen, the duo based out of Minneapolis play some blend of folk/blues that’s tough to label. A friend of mine claims they sound like M. Ward, but I’ll stick with the time-tested label of awesome. Pisano plays guitar, bass pedals, sings, loops his vocals. Christ, he does everything short of making balloon animals on stage. And, while you may think that doesn’t leave much room for Moen to shine, the exact opposite is true. Watching them play, and on many subsequent listens to Inter-Be, it’s uncanny how Moen pops up with fills or brings the drums to the forefront at the perfect moment. For such a relatively new band, their chemistry on stage is mesmerizing.
The songs on Inter-Be were written by Pisano in a fit of creativity after a dry spell, seemingly out of nowhere. After playing them for Moen, the duo fleshed them out for the album that sits before you now. The first two tunes are below and both are amazing. I also love “Untitled 101,” but the tune that has become my favorite is “For Now.” Individually, the work of both Moen and Pisano is extraordinary. Moen is seemingly out of control, but in the right place at the same time. Pisano brews up a combo of picking, looping, and vocalizing that dances and skitters over Moen’s frantic backbeat. Would a song like “For Now” be enjoyable without Moen? Sure, it is great tune, but the the way the two work together throughout the album is nothing short of brilliant.
The duo will be hitting the road this summer in support of the new release and alongside Freelance Whales, Heartless Bastards, and The Builders and The Butchers later on this summer. I can’t stress enough how impressive Peter Wolf Crier are in person. The album is outstanding, but seeing them live is a whole other experience, and one not to be missed. PWC is in Chicago today and visiting us for a live session. We’ll have that one out in the week’s ahead.