New York City’s acclaimed Dead Waves – the duo comprising brothers Teddy and Nick Panopoulos – returns with new album God of the Wild, coming October 26th. It is Dead Waves’ sixth release and the first on the band’s newly-founded label, Entheon Records.
Recorded and mixed by the legendary Martin Bisi (Sonic Youth, Swans, Brian Eno) at his cavernous factory space in Brooklyn, BC Studio, God of the Wild is a dark, haunting experience that blurs lines between urban and rural, modern and ancient, heavy rock and fragile folk.
Stream first single “Astrapi” here:
Early Dead Waves releases, including the Steve Albini-produced Oracles of the Grave/Promise 7″, rocked in a heavy-garage fashion, sparking comparisons to Nirvana and Pixies. Over the course of six releases – one per year from 2013 to the present day – the band has gradually severed ties with rock conventions and blossomed into an unfettered, experimental musical entity. Gone now are the Grohl-ish drums and Cobain-ish roars, but in this rawer state the music is more powerful than ever.
Like a secret door in a New York subway tunnel, leading to sun-kissed, rolling hills, God of the Wild marries the urban intensity of classic Bisi productions like Sonic Youth’s EVOL, with a bare-bones, lo-fi sound evoking rural vistas. At times delicate and somber, at times psychedelic and raging, God of the Wild is soulful and convincing from start to finish. Teddy describes the mindset that went into making this music:
“For this album we really wanted to go clean slate. Not listening to anything while creating, just delving into our feelings and blanking everything out. Feelings of loneliness, happiness, sadness. How this concept of time, in what we perceive as reality, goes by so quick. Loved ones passing away, ourselves getting older. Just trying to enjoy the now, the feeling of just being and trying to enjoy, but all the while with that certain lingering sadness.”
God of the Wild is the first Dead Waves release to feature no drums or percussion at all. The songs are constructed from the brothers’ minimal guitars, bass, analog synth and vocals, and the raw spaciousness of Bisi’s studio is felt throughout. Opening track “Gabriella” features guest vocals by Jessica Reynoza of The Willowz.
Nodding to their Greek heritage, the brothers Panopoulos also use ancient Greek instruments on certain songs. Teddy explains:
“We wanted to intertwine our modern analog and digital electronic instruments with the most basic instruments carved out of wood. I added in my wooden acoustic lyre kithara and my wooden flute, which I picked up years ago from ancestors’ region in Greece. We call this concept ‘ancient future,’ paying homage to our ancient origins.”
God of the Wild was mastered by Kim Rosen (Aimee Mann, Charles Bradley). The cover art was created by Teddy Panopoulos and Ana Belen Ruiz.
1) Gabriella (feat. Jessica Reynoza)
2) God of the Wild
3) Silver Pirouettes
4) Cousin of Magiic
6) Ancient Love
8) Dream Harvest
9) Strategia della Tensione
10) Tabula Rasa
Teddy Panopoulos – electric bass, lyre kithara, flute, analog synth
Nick Panopoulos – electric guitar, acoustic guitar
God of the Wild (2018, Entheon Records)
The Great Clock (2017, self-released)
Living Inside (2016, self-released)
Nature (2015, self-released)
Oracles of the Grave/Promise 7″ (2014, self-released)
Take Me Away EP (2013, self-released)