Shady Groves – the culmination of Detroit songwriters Adam Fitzgerald, Dylan Caron, Jeff Yateman, Jamie Dulin, Colt Caron, and Sage Denam – recently released two singles from their upcoming record, Dreamboat, and both are worthy predecessors for an album with a title that hints at serenity. “Quiet Wolf” and “Backflips” stand on their own as separate entities – perhaps even representative of different genres, due in large part to the fact that each member of Shady Groves has a hand in composing songs, and each bring disparate styles to the table.
“Backflips” offers a fusion of shoegaze, funk, and electronic elements that join effortlessly to create an ambiance of nonchalance. The mantra of the song (“back and forth, knowing it doesn’t matter”) isn’t specific; Fitzgerald (on vocals) could be referring to love, inner turmoil, the actual act of making music – any number of things, really. The lulling synths and hooky beat settle into a casual, unbothered rhythm befitting the song’s terse themes.
“Quiet Wolf” taps into a different side of the band, with Caron’s vocals vulnerably recounting a journey down a path of self-destruction: “I want to clench my fist so fucking tight / Around that bottle of gin all day and night / I’ve been through this before.” Whether it’s a coping mechanism for a broken heart or a boomerang of a behavior pattern, the song accurately wraps the feeling of desperation and dependence into a tiny bow and presents it to the listener with a subtle emotional wallop.
All of the musicians in the band also release music under their own solo projects, and Caron’s latest also happens to bear the name Quiet Wolf (Yateman performs as Jemmi Hazeman both with and without the Honey Riders; Fitzgerald makes solo work under the name Quells). There’s no doubt the band is going places, both figuratively and literally – Fitzgerald is plotting a big move to Edinburgh, Scotland, though the band plans to continue writing music together from their home base in Detroit, even across the Atlantic. Keep an eye out for Dreamboat, which should see release sometime in the fall before the band goes on its official hiatus.