Wolves At The Gate returns, preparing to release their sophomore effort "VxV" (pronounced "Five by Five") on June 10th, 2014. "VxV" features innovative songwriting that Wolves At The Gate fans have come to expect, complete with searing guitars and soaring vocals from the Ohio-based post-hardcore outfit. VxV was produced and mixed by Will Putney (For Today, Chiodos, Like Moths to Flames) at the Machine Shop in Belleville, NJ, The band will be touring throughout the summer and fall in support of "VxV", hitting summer festivals along the way.
"VxV really came together in an unexpected way" says singer and guitarist Steve Cobucci. "Never had I felt so uncertain about about WATG songs going into the studio, yet never have I been so thankful for the finished product. It's a strange feeling to know in your heart that the songs are good but so unsure of how they'd come to fruition. I really hope that people can see the thought and time put into each track. Beyond the music I hope that people can continually see the abundant love of God, His sure and rich mercies, and the infinite worth of Jesus Christ."
Over the past three years Wolves At The Gate has firmly positioned themselves as a staple in the Solid State Records roster. Having released their full-length debut "Captors" and two EP's ("We Are The Ones" and "Back To School"), the band has toured with the likes of Emery, A Skylit Drive, Unearth, Born Of Osiris, Fit For A King, and Gideon, growing an extremely loyal fan base.
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Anthems of Atonement| Posted June 16, 2014
Solid State signees Wolves At the Gate gained a following with the release of their impressive 2012 debut Captors. After honing their formidable sound with two years on the road, they're back with heavy-hitting sophomore album VxV (pronounced "Five by Five").
This album carries the carefully crafted blend of clean vocals and visceral screams that puts the band in the same playing field as heavyweights like Oh, Sleeper and Memphis Mayfire, with consistently brutal drum lines reminiscent of For Today and searing, scorching guitar tones straying into territory mapped out by bands like Showbread. Though the musical ground has been covered before, Wolves At the Gate definitely forcefully stakes their own claim in the heavy music world. First full track "Wake Up" crashes in with a chaotic vocal shove fitting for lyrics forming a call to action, demanding faithful believers speak about the truth. "Return" is another song shaping marching orders, serving almost as an apologetic for the presence of God.
There is an urgency throughout this album, a heaviness in the lyrical themes driven home by the blistering screams and steady thud of the fast paced metal-style drumming. "Wild Heart" and "The Convicted" both desperately declare the depravity of the human heart, yearning for rescue from itself. "The Bird and the Snake" is a parable-style story in which the snake represents Satan, eating a helpless bird feather by feather.
Perhaps the most lasting theme however is that of atonement. The album could be seen as building a kind of conversation between desperate hearts and their Healer (as voiced in "Relief" and "Rest"). "Majesty in Misery" uses a suitably violent musical slant to talk about Christ taking the wrath directed at humanity on Himself. "The Father's Bargain" is an often chilling 6 minute epic outlining a conversation between the Father and His Son Jesus, a conversation in which the Father makes the cost of freedom for the world clear-- and Jesus chooses to pay the price for the sake of love.
Closing Thoughts: VxV is theologically dense and gospel-centric, emphasizing calls to repentance and redemption, frequently using strong scriptural imagery and voice overs to achieve an even stronger presentation. The music does not suffer at the hands of the message, however. Wolves At the Gate seems to have a knack for tailoring the sonic atmosphere of the moment to perfectly complement the lyric it accompanies. Although they don't coax anything particularly new from the style they write in, they do utilize the established conventions quite well. The album's strength lies in its urgency, setting scruples aside in favor of raw writing focused on our desperate need for a desperately loving Savior.
Song to Download Now:
"The Father's Bargain" (Get it on iTunes here.)