Azure Wolf
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Azure Wolf

Washington DC, Washington DC, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2019 | SELF

Washington DC, Washington DC, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2019
Band Rock Indie

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"Azure Wolf Concert Review"

On July 16th, Azure Wolf and Fix Your Hearts played what the owner of the DC9 nightclub stated was the first ticketed show the venue has held since March of 2020. When it comes to things that the COVID-19 pandemic has put to an abrupt halt, live music is one of the first things that comes to mind. I haven’t been to a concert since February of 2020, and I’m sure many others find themselves in a similar position. With this in mind, one can only imagine how excited I was to be on the guestlist for a live show at an independent venue. The night was nothing short of magical.

I’ll preface by saying I had high expectations before seeing Azure Wolf, simply because I knew they had months of non-stop practice for upcoming live shows under their belt. They not only met every expectation but exceeded it beyond belief. Every single song they played sounded incredibly put-together, and I’m sure if I asked them to play their songs backward, they could do it. Not only did they sound good, but their ability to captivate the crowd’s attention and every member’s strong stage presence also created the perfect show. I don’t think it’s possible for someone to attend an Azure Wolf show and not enjoy themselves. They played the perfect mix of new songs and ones that I knew every lyric to. It was an incredible performance all around, and I wish the night never had to come to an end. - Anna Wood (WGMU)


"Azure Wolf: The Newest Face of Folk (Translated)"

There is no way to start this text without thinking that I am back at least 40 years in time.

Azure Wolf brings back a chemistry that seemed lost for a long time from the folk atmosphere that enchanted the audience with lyrics that made you think and feel in a unique and mesmerizing tune worthy of the best hits created, for example, by Joan Baez.

Crash And Burn takes us to better times, where listening to good music made you see far away without knowing where the horizon would end and imagining a future without images, but with a lot of creativity to draw it only in the waves of what was being played.

It's impossible not to be enchanted and with the beautiful, and angelic, voice of Victoria Backle, which gives a tone of softness and beauty to something that is already a work of art in itself.

Her vocal lines fit perfectly, dilapidating, even more, a diamond that is already worked in the most different details, but that can always have a touch of class more.

Nothing gets lost, or thrown away, in the music. Everything finds its proper place in what the track asks to become a classic to be remembered.

And in this science, more than exact, of the band, we ended up becoming part of this whole mixture of sensations and good feelings that the energy of Crash and Burn leaves us when it passes through every inch of our existence in this parallel universe that the band created for us shelter.

This single is followed by being in one of those old hippie communities, lying on the grass, looking up at the giant sky full of stars and not worrying about anything at all other than being part of something that contains as much magic as we do. toasted Azure Wolf. - Roadie Music


"Azure Wolf drop bright and punchy new single "Honey Rush""

American act Azure Wolf has recently dropped their bright and punchy new single "Honey Rush", and might I say it's a damn right bop for your feel-good playlists.

Hailing from Winchester, VA in the good old United States of America the quartet is influenced by indie-rock music from the 1990s, but with some nods to the indie scene in the USA in the early to mid '00s, think Interpol and Yeah Yeah Yeahs. You can really hear the two aforementioned bands in this cut, from the twinkling guitar tones that remind me of Interpol to the raw and epic vocals of Karen O.

This band is up there with some of the very best acts in their state, and by the sounds of it they can easily be one of the best acts in the Indie-Rock scene, not just in their state but their country, especially if they keep on making music as anthemic as "Honey Rush". - It's All Indie


"AZURE WOLF ORCHESTRATED THE ULTIMATE ALT-INDIE POP-ROCK ANTHEM WITH THEIR SINGLE, ‘HONEY RUSH’"

On May 21st, 2021, Azure Wolf released their most visceral work to date with their double a-side single, Chateau / Honey Rush. Both of the singles are fervent exhibitions of the Winchester, VA-based alt-indie artist’s authentically accessible experimentalism. Yet, with Honey Rush, Azure Wolf orchestrated a dark pop-rock anthem that unequivocally affirms that they need to be on your gig bucket list.

With pop elements creating an all-consuming chorus constructed with sweeping sonic progressions, anthemic production and catchy lyrics that you’ll probably need a serious concussion to forget, Honey Rush is the ultimate anthem for anyone whose mentality errs on the side of melancholy.

The breaks that follow the tension-fraught build-ups offer a serious amount of catharsis as you get caught up in the tumultuous momentum of the radio-ready single. It is one of those tragically rare singles that becomes more impactful and meaningful the more you listen to it.

Azure Wolf’s latest release is now available to stream via Spotify and Bandcamp.

Connect with Azure Wolf via Facebook and Instagram.

Review by Amelia Vandergast - A&R Factory


"AZURE WOLF talks about new funky, upbeat and nostalgic single ‘HONEY RUSH’ – IN CONVERSATION"

We sit down with AZURE WOLF to talk about their latest release ‘CHATEAU / HONEY RUSH’, an alt 90s-inspired indie-rock outfit that prides itself on sharing their positive and negative lived experiences through their ethereal sound to create profound connections. ‘HONEY RUSH’ reiterates the band’S sonic power, driven by the angular sting of the guitar notes with pulsing beats and resilience-projecting vocals. “Honey Rush” was recorded at Poetown Music in Strasburg, VA and produced by Will Beasley of Richmond, VA.

YMX: Hey AZURE WOLF, how is it going? some of our readers might not be familiar with your project, how would you describe yourself, in a few words?

Victoria Backle (Vocals, Rhythm Guitar): Azure Wolf is a dreamy, ethereal and dark indie rock band. I think we’re pretty eclectic in our sound. We do a lot of nostalgic rock that sounds reminiscent of the 90s, but we also push the bounds and create modern music that sounds like a mixture of all kinds of genres. We’re not afraid to step out of the box and explore the possibilities of our music.

Tommy Moore (Drums): I think at our core we are a rock band but we have ethereal and dark tendencies. We’re not a guitar band, we’re not a synth band; we’re both. It’s the combination of all those things that really makes up our sound, in my opinion.

Sean Spencer (Bass/Synth): We’re like that feeling when you see yourself in the mirror on a good hair day and think “Yea man, you got this, you sassy, wild-eyed stallion of dreams”.

YMX: Your current work is the result of a long journey; What first drew you to making music?

VB: I’ve always had a love for writing songs, I used to do it all the time as a kid and teenager, but I never really took it seriously. I didn’t have any formal training as a musician, but a couple years ago I decided to sit down and dedicate myself to learning the guitar. My partner really pushed me to take it seriously and I did my first open mic in 2018. It was the first time I had ever performed in front of anyone – I was terrified! It all happened fast after that and now I’m incredibly grateful to have an amazing band that believes in me and pushes me to be a better musician.

TM: As far what drew me to wanting to be in this band – I think it was Victoria that really sold it for me. The way her voice sounds, her lyrics and her vision is just something I really believed in even before I joined the band. I just feel blessed she wanted me to be a part of it.

SS: I think my first memories of really being drawn to music were through video games as a medium. The Final Fantasy sound tracks really drew me in initially and I wanted to compose for movies or games. My friends and I started a band in middle school, as one does, and playing in a band felt so right that I knew I wanted to make music in front of crowds for a living.

Isaac Foltz (Lead Guitar/Producer): Something just clicked for me where I decided this is what I want to do. I felt a lot of joy from creating music and came to the realization that if I was going to do what I love for a “career” it would have to be this. Anything else was going to leave me less than satisfied.

YMX: What would be your dream collaboration?

VB: John Mayer is a huge inspiration to me and I think we’d make some beautiful babie… —I mean, music together. John, if you’re reading this, hmu.

TM: I would love to jam with Jack White sometime, I love his approach to music. It would also be cool to work with someone really different from what we do like Cher or ABBA.

SS: Hmm… Personally, Simon Posford, Trent Reznor, or Tom Waits maybe. Someone really out of my wheelhouse who isn’t afraid to push the boundaries, so you just wouldn’t know what would come out of the fusion.

IF: I would love to sit down with Taylor Goldsmith from Dawes and write a song together. His songs always inspire me to want to be a better songwriter.

YMX: You recently released the double single ‘CHATEAU / HONEY RUSH’. Can you tell us how that project came about?

VB: We just released “Chateau” and “Honey Rush” on May 21st and we’ve been receiving a bit of love from them. Both tracks are totally different from one another and I think it’s a really cool way to show everyone our diversity as a band. “Honey Rush” has a funky, upbeat and nostalgic feel to it, while “Chateau” is a ballad about doing whatever it takes to realize our dreams. We’re really proud of this release.

TM: We are releasing a double single “Chateau / Honey Rush”. Chateau was recorded and produced by our guitar player, Isaac, and Honey Rush was recorded last year at Poetown Studios and produced by Will Beasley. They sound very different from each other. Chateau is a ballad song with strings and piano and Honey Rush is a more straightforward pop song. We really love how both of them came out and really feel like they represent our flexibility with what we can do as a band.


SS: “Honey Rush” was an early collaboration between the band that we’ve really polished into the high-energy groove it is now, and it’s an absolute blast to play. It feels to me like it’s among our more care-free, rock-out feeling songs, which is always a fun vibe. “Chateau” is something really personal to the band I think. To me it feels a little like a gem in the heart of us, a representation of the shared dream we all have to get to make a living doing this with each other. Victoria really knocked it out of the park with this one and I’m very proud of how we came together to bring it to life.

YMX: What inspires your songwriting work?

VB: Life experiences: joy, love, heartbreak, challenge, triumph. My lyrics are usually my way of processing my life – sometimes abstractly and sometimes literally. I just want to put down on paper my authentic experience, because I think a lot of people will be able to relate to how I feel and what I’ve lived through. That’s the point, for me anyway, is to connect with as many people as possible.

TM: For me it’s just listening to my favorite records, taking pieces of things from those and making them signature to what I do. It’s also really easy to be inspired by the other members in this band. There’s no feeling like looking out at your friends when you are locked in with them, listening to each other and creating at the same time. There’s a certain electricity in that moment that nothing else in life really compares to.

SS: Personally, I enjoy the chemistry of mixing with the other guys’ minds in writing. I love building on their ideas, trying to feel out a middle ground between us all, and to watch the colors of our influences meld into the finished product. So I guess I’d say… listening is my inspiration!

IF: What I’m feeling and thinking inspires my writing work. I’m very much a mood writer and wherever my headspace is at is where I want to go.

YMX: We are all missing live music at the moment. Once on the other side, which music venue would you choose for your first gig?

VB: I mean, Madison Square Garden would be acceptable, but in the meantime we are going to be hitting DC pretty hard this summer to get back on track with live shows. We’re excited to play Black Cat in DC and the East by Northeast Film and Music Festival in New York this year.

TM: 9:30 Club definitely is one on the list. For us, D.C is the place we want to be right now. Sean Spencer: I mean, if there’s no limits, Pompeii man, let’s go big. Or like flying over a city in a Zeppelin. That’d be pretty sweet. Isaac Foltz: I’d love to play State Theatre (Falls Church, VA) again!

YMX: What’s your band strategy in terms of music promotion? Direct-2-fans or via the “big dogs”?

VB: We heavily DIY promote which usually means spending hours sending out emails, following up, and researching venues, blogs and playlist curators. Usually by the end of the day, my head is spinning. I think I see “Submit” buttons in my dreams. We always personally answer messages and comments and do the best we can to engage with the following we’re starting to build. It feels so good to have people from all over place reach out and say they’re digging what we’re doing. Those are the relationships we have to foster. Recently, we’ve collaborated with a PR team to help expand our reach and that’s been a great addition.

SS: We’ve been working on a mixture of working with professionals as well as local and “grass-roots” promotion to help find the people that we connect with. That’s pretty tough! There’s just a slew of talent out there and sometimes having some people who have experience in the marketing world on your team can make all the difference.

YMX: Finally, what are your plans for the future?

VB: We are releasing one more single in July called “Crash and Burn” and then we’ll be releasing our first full album in the fall. We’re so excited to finally get these songs out there – it’s been a year-long process with so many challenges. I wouldn’t have wanted to do it with any other group of people. I think this last year has proved our loyalty to one another.

SS: We have another single coming, an album release in the fall, and hopefully a second one to follow in the next year or so! We’re always writing/creating, so expect plenty of future Azure Wolf-iness!

IF: The plan is to keep writing, recording, releasing a full length album and playing some shows this year! - Your Music Experience


"Azure Wolf – “Black Fur” – full of emotional resolve and musical energy!"

Nowadays, it’s difficult to make a rock record without it sounding like a parody of itself. Far too often the contemporary take on the genre feels forced, derivative and unauthentic. With a highly dynamic and atmospheric rock flavor, dosed with a bluesy soul, the indie-rock band Azure Wolf, from Winchester, VA, affirms that the genre can still be invitingly compelling. Their latest single, “Black Fur”, buoyed by front-woman Victoria Backle’s powerhouse vocals and profound lyrical bite, captures an authentic rock spirit and struts with a direct and unapologetic feminine energy.

Originally a solo folk project established by Backle, the project quickly grew into a four piece band. With jangly guitars and a larger-than-life melody, the single “Black Fur”, is a slow burning, mid-tempo arena-rock anthem full of emotional resolve and musical energy. Its opening lines are replete with both cryptic and vivid imagery, and are bolstered by Backle’s passionate delivery: “Someone tears my ribs from both sides. Someone wants my soul. Someone takes my spark and ignites. Someone eats me whole.”

Driven by Victoria Backle’s ability to conquer and bring to life vocals that are her own, this track will make people feel something, as the singer drives a blend of rebellion, danger, and sensuality, with a just fragment of vulnerability, to the forefront. Bringing the words to life with an attitude, she is sure to soon become everyone’s favorite female indie-rock singer. Backle seriously knows how to deliver a mesmerism of tantalizing vocal nuances. Surprisingly, she plays the guitar too.

Now that doesn’t mean the rest of the band isn’t kickass, because they most definitely are. Each tap into the vein of their selected craft and construct a supercharged backdrop that is as subtly controlled as it is explosive. The band ramp up their creative and performing juices, to drive a three minute track designed to mesmerize, and showcase the vocal talents of Victoria Backle, who is set to blow the universe of pop princesses out of orbit.

Every now and again, the imploding rock music scenes gains a new weapon to its arsenal of must-hear bands, and Azure Wolf earn their right to be on that list with “Black Fur”. The drumming, bass, keys, and guitar tracks on the single, showcase impacting self-expression, and a well thought-out arrangement, without the usual rock pretentiousness – something the genre can do without.

The success of “Black Fur” lies in its ability to balance an almost intimate vulnerability with the jangling guitars, and a languid, ethereal aura that builds into a thick storm of climbing emotion: “One night won’t kill me, Lord. One night won’t take me under. One night won’t kill me, Lord, no,” exclaims Backle, her voice bristling with self-assured sentiment. From that point onward you’ll be hooked, with no way of turning back.

The musicality in this track comes in waves, climaxing at every turn of phrase Victoria Backle twists her tongue around. “Black Fur” fiercely blossoms as she embraces her sensibilities and her strength. Moreover, the track proves beyond doubt that Azure Wolf have all they need to carve out their own blistering artistic lane.

Formed in March of 2020, the band – made up of Sean Spencer (Bass and Synth), Isaac Foltz (Lead Guitar), Tommy Moore (Drums) and of course Victoria Backle (Singer/Songwriter and Rhythm Guitar) – has been busy writing and performing through livestreams and virtual festivals across the world, including Brazil’s Sonnar Music Festival.

Azure Wolf have four new singles, each releasing on a monthly timeline, before they drop their first full length album in the fall of 2021. The single “Black Fur” drops officially on April 9th. - Jamsphere


"Azure Wolf Shines Bright On “Black Fur”"

I got chills listening to “Black Fur.”

Azure Wolf is a female-fronted indie rock band (Victoria Backle established the band) from Winchester, VA. Even though they were formed just last year, their chemistry on songs makes it seem like they were making music together since they were toddlers. In anticipation of their upcoming album, the band decided to release “Black Fur,” a captivating tune that WILL strike a chord with you.

As far as I’m concerned, no one on Azure Wolf is a hypnotist; yet, while listening to “Black Fur,” I was under the band’s spell. The song features a hypnotizing instrumental that boasts drum patterns that will make you nod your head nonstop, intoxicating guitar-play, and a tempo that starts to pick up its pace towards the end. The song also features a boisterous/passionate vocal performance and lyrics that promote resiliency, fearlessness, and good outfits in the most invigorating way possible (Victoria, since when did you and my heart become such good friends?).

“Black Fur” will be hitting streaming services on April 9th! - Ratings Game Music


"Azure Wolf’s Deep And Dark “Black Fur”"

Winchester, Virginia’s Azure Wolf is set to drop “Black Fur,” the first of four new singles from their forthcoming debut album. The DC area group formed one year ago, at the dawn of the pandemic in March 2020. Front woman Victoria Backle originally launched the project as a solo acoustic Folk act. However, before long she was joined by bassist Sean Spencer, guitarist Isaac Foltz and drummer Tommy Moore. Azure Wolf was born.

Launching a new band during the pandemic has not been easy. Without the opportunity to tour or even to play local clubs, Azure Wolf has kept busy writing and practicing. They’ve performed through livestreams and virtual festivals across the world, including Brazil’s Sonnar Music Festival. Throughout the year they have also released a handful of singles.

Their upcoming single “Black Fur” is a downtempo, Americana-tinged Indie Rock song with a dark and deeply personal theme. Within the standard guitar/bass/drums framework of a Rock & Roll band, the group creates a dream scene of invoked memory. Ethereal electric guitar chords circle the atmosphere of the song’s chorus as Backle strums her acoustic and paints a lyrical portrait of a young woman coping with and disassociating from the trauma of a foray into prostitution. With a mix of live organic instrumentation, raw emotion and a dark meditative mood the band creates a hypnotic and visceral experience.

Azure Wolf has four new singles releasing in early 2021 before they drop their first full length album in the fall. “Black Fur” is the first of their singles which will be released everywhere on April 9, 2021. Until then, check out their SoundCloud page, below. You can also hear their current single “Both Hands” on the Deep Indie Dive playlist. And follow the links below to connect with the band. Get on their socials and get in the loop on everything this exciting new band has in store for 2021. - The Static Dive


"The Five Best Songs ReverbNation Has To Offer So Far In 2021"

To conclude this list of my favourite songs found on ReverbNation this year, we’ve got some indie/alternative rock from Winchester. Honey Rush and it’s shimmering electric guitar melodies caught my ear alongside the strong vocals of Victoria Backle. Their style is not unlike emerging London-based band POSE. This four-piece have such a lovely polished sound, although, a little darker than my usual taste. Both Hands is their new release and it showcases the band’s expansive appeal. - The Sound Sniffer


"A Musician's Moment with Azure Wolf"

The coronavirus hit musicians hard in 2020, showing a steep decline in streaming numbers as the revenue stream from gigs and live concerts faced extinction as a result of social distancing. For the world at large, most businesses have already adapted in order to remain functional and maintain profits in2021. For the music industry, standing room at venues may still be out of the question, concerning fans with how to stay up-to-date with their favorite artists without seeing them live or in-person.

Like many other countries, America’s roots in music stems from the compositions created by a mix of cultures, ideologies, ethnicities and backgrounds. Azure Wolf, an indie dream-rock band from Winchester, Virginia, is one prime example of how artists from the DMV music scene have recognized societal shifts or major world events and entertained a different method of culling innovation and bringing about new ideas.

With 2020 in its wake, 2021 looks promising for Azure Wolf, as well as the local and regional bands that want to follow in their altruistic, giant steps. After hearing their hit “Honey Rush,” Alchemical Records reached out for an in-depth interview with the band for a comment about the highs and lows from last year, what it’s like as a up-and-coming band in the DMV, and for some commentary on their upcoming EP release, Post Impressions.

As musicians in the DMV, how have you seen the scene change in response to the pandemic?

Azure Wolf: We recently played a livestream at DC9 and it’s honestly sad to play to empty DC venues. There’s such an unnatural feel to being hooked up to computers and playing for (what feels like) no one. There’s no energy to feed off of and that’s the most enjoyable part of playing a show; being able to physically see people soaking in the music. I am, however, wildly grateful for these venues adapting to the changing times and keeping live music afloat.

Azure Wolf – made up of singer/songwriter and rhythm guitarist Victoria Backle; Isaac Foltz on lead guitar and backup vocals; Thomas Moore on the one’s and two’s; and Sean Spencer on bass
and synthesizers – started out as a solo acoustic/folk project before turning into a four-piece folk band after a few gigs and acoustic performances. The band performed in Washington D.C. and the Northern Virginia area for some time before the band finally found their true sound.

Recently, the band has released a new song during the outbreak of COVID-19 titled “19,” a groove for the decade written about the reality of life in the biological wartime of quarantine. Backle has said that she tends to “dig deep into my personal battles and traumas to find inspiration,” where she’s found that “vocalizing my struggles not only releases their power over me, but it helps others identify [their struggles] and at the end of the day, we all want to feel validated and that our feelings are heard.”

Backle notes that she hopes that the band’s lyrics will help people who don’t know how to vocalize their struggles on their own. “They don’t need someone to tell them they’re not crazy – we all feel like this sometimes,” said Backle.

You recently released the song “19” amidst the pandemic. Can you tell our readers about that?

Backle: “19” is an interesting song for me and I tend to go back and forth on my feelings about it. I wrote the song on an acoustic guitar, so it originally had a sad element as opposed to the upbeat 80s-esque feel it has now. It was spawned out of quarantine and the song itself is actually about COVID – hence the nineteen. I hear a lot of people say that they assumed it was about being nineteen and leaving home for the first time. I love that it has a meaning outside of living in a pandemic, I think that means it’ll stand the test of time. As a band, “19” isn’t our favorite song, we were still coming into our sound and there’s an uncertainty and naivety in the track that we’ve grown out of. Despite that, it holds a special place in our hearts and a lot of our fans seems to like this one.

In February 2020, Azure Wolf put together a three-hour benefit concert with a mixed bill of bands from the DMV to raise money in the hopes of fighting the toss and tumult of the raging Australian bushfires, where they raised a total of $1,200 in donations and interest in the cause. The band truly has the human condition in mind as they seek to produce music that inspires hope in such a strange time.

How has COVID-19 affected you as a band?

Backle: We have been incredibly fortunate during this weird time. We’ve managed to stay busy with live streams from multiple venues and the downtime has given us an opportunity to focus on writing and generating new content. The current lineup of Azure Wolf only formed in February of this year, so COVID gave us some time to develop our sound and formulate ideas with each other.

Spencer: COVID has been something to rally around, I think. Everyone is being forced into this unknown territory, and in a strange way, has helped us to find a focus. We’re having to work twice as hard to find ways to progress and stay active in lieu of gigging, and a litany of songs and growth have sprung from that.

Foltz: We’ve really learned to pace ourselves. Now that we have virtually no deadlines, and shows are few and only virtual, we have really settled into a more detailed songwriting and editing process. Sometimes there is a pressure to “fill out a set time” that pushes less than complete songs out on stage before they are ready. I feel like, with that pressure alleviated, we are doing some of our best work.

Moore: COVID has actually been a blessing for the most part. We’ve used our time working on songwriting and our live set. It’s been nice to stay creative without the pressure of playing shows. Live-streaming has been good to us as well.

Daily life for Azure Life has changed only so much during the pandemic, as they continue to write hits that move and groove the groovin’ hips and singin’ lips of those around them with the audiophiles at-home in mind. During a viral outbreak, getting personal may be the only way to stay personal with those around us, despite social distancing and working from home.

Can you share with our audience a personal anecdote about your songwriting process?

Spencer: My songwriting process usually starts with listening. Often times I’ll be plucking along to something as an exercise or for fun, and then “the thing” jumps out at me and becomes the genesis for whatever the song will be. For instance, when we were writing “Wounds” it started as a jam on a cabin trip of ours. At first I was holding these heavy bass tones on the synth, and then Tommy came in with these tight kicks on the phrase, and that immediately became the rhythmic focus for the rest of the song on my end. Funny enough, I also misheard a lyric that Victoria had improvised in that early jam as “wake up, someone is missing,” and it led to the dark themes that the song carries now.

Foltz: Part of my songwriting process is being repetitive with what stands out to me. I usually will sit down to write and get pulled towards different voicings on the guitar, a tone, or some kind of shape that is unique to me. After I find something that I like, I will repeat until I feel comfortable with it or until it is annoying to me. I feel like if I’m okay with hearing a riff or part over and over again, then it’s worth keeping.

Moore: Usually when Victoria sends a rough track of something to work on I try to imagine how drums would sound in my head. I’ll do some air drums or tap it out on something to make sure it makes sense, I don’t have a full kit at my place so I can’t usually work it out until we are at practice. Most of the time that works! For me to be a good drummer is to be a good listener, you have to listen for those little intricacies of the rhythm guitar or cadence of the vocals and match them on the drums the best you can. I would consider myself more of a “song” drummer than a “technical guy” overall.

What’s next for you?

Backle: We have so many things coming up, we can hardly keep our excitement in! We’ve recently acquired a manager who is helping us with a string of releases set to come out in the next couple of months. Among our first releases are going to be “Black Fur” and “Honey Rush” along with a few others we’ve been working incredibly hard on. After that string of singles, we’ll be releasing an EP with even more new music. We’re taking a short hiatus from livestreaming and focusing on writing and recording so we can keep the content rolling for everyone. We think these releases will really define us and set in stone our fanbase, so we’re really looking forward to seeing how that unfolds for us.

In your opinion, how can our audience support you and musicians like you?

Backle: Follow us on social media and tune into our live streams or come out to one of our shows when the world opens back up. We love playing live and it’s definitely one of our strong suits, so we’d love to see you all come out for one of those. We will be releasing a string of singles over the next few months, starting in March, and then an EP later in the year, so keep an eye out for those. We try to make following us on social media as beneficial and interactive as possible with giveaways, Q&As and just generally ridiculous footage.

Foltz: You can support our music by following us on Spotify or wherever you stream music. We have a ton of new music to release in 2021. Hopefully we will get to share it live with people when it is safe to tour and play at venues.

Spencer: Right now, listening to livestreams and sharing content are the biggest ways to help. Showing an interest in a band you like even when you can’t go see them personally does so much. It keeps musicians motivated, it keeps the hope of the scene alive, and it can show prospective business movers and shakers that you have an effect on people. So share them links, y’all, and please ask your friends to do the same.

The band recently recorded a double-sided single out in a cabin in the woods and produced two songs, “Pieces” and “Both Hands” which became available on all major platforms on February 1. If you want to check out Azure Wolf, listen to their latest hit out of quarantine, “19″: - Alchemical Records


"Azure Wolf Blesses Us With Not 1, but 2 New Tunes"

Schools on the East Coast are closed on February 1st, 2021. Is this for the snow storm or the two new songs by the Virginia-based synth-heavy alternative band Azure Wolf dropped today? We may never have a clear answer. We do, however, hope you'll spend the day warm, romantically sipping soup out of a clay mug, and playing these gorgeous, dark, and atmospheric tunes on repeat until the snowplow comes by.

1. What can you tell us about the song?

“Pieces / Both Hands” are releasing as an A/B single on February 1st. These songs are incredibly special to us and an intimate look into Azure Wolf. We decided to go on a writers retreat to a cabin in the mountains a couple weeks back. We ended up writing “Both Hands” and recording both of these songs together. Our guitar player, Isaac Foltz, produced, mixed and mastered both of these songs. We even took the cover photo of the singles right outside the cabin, so this “Cabin Session” release is purely Azure Wolf, start to finish.

2. What was the process of creating the song?

“Pieces” was one that we had already written before getting to the cabin. We had parts we needed to flesh out, but the bones of the song were already there. Lyrically, the song came from a long look through personal patterns of taking advantage of other people’s feelings. The phrase, “You only think you love me”, is deeply personal and comes from a fear that people can only love the idea of someone and not the real them.

“Both Hands” was written inside of the cabin and really reflects our rock and roll roots. The heavy bass tones, haunting guitar and deep anthem-rock drums are everything that drives us. This release is fun because it shows our dark, witchy side and our vulnerable, introspective side.

3. What was the most surprising thing about the process?

It was surprising to discover how capable we are of being self-sufficient. The music industry is so difficult because there are so many moving parts and hands that want to be in control of things. Production has always proved to be a struggle for us to get done, so it was revolutionary to find we can start to do this ourselves.

4. If you had to dedicate the song to someone, who would it be and why?

Honestly, I think these ones go out to the fans who have been waiting patiently for us to release more music. These songs lend true to our vision and sound, so it feels good to have something out there that defines us a little bit.

5. Where does the new release fit into the timeline of your musical journey so far?

This one is special to us. We haven’t released anything since March, so it feels empowering to not only release a double single, but one that we had complete control over. I think it’s the beginning of a new era for us.

6. What can fans expect next, musically or otherwise?

We have so much coming up in the next year. These releases are our bon voyage into 2021, which is just the beginning of a string of new releases. Our next one will be in early spring, so look out for that single titled, “Black Fur”.

7. What do you do when you're not making music?

As a band, we love to just hang out and be with each other. Taking a weekend to write in a cabin, playing corn-hole, jamming out new ideas or just having a chill movie night; we just love to be with each other and grow as a unit. - Sonic Smoothie


"Artist Spotlight Interview - Azure Wolf"

In a string of releases throughout 2020, Azure Wolf has been gracing us with their particular brand of dream alt-rock.



Starting with the ambient and cinematic stylings of "Love, Mother" we get a feel for the emotionally driven standpoint of Azure Wolf. Soaking in beautiful soundscapes and powerful vocals reminiscent of Fleetwood Mac's Stevie Nicks is a wonderous experience.



Following that up with "Dancing Bears"; a radio single that rocks a bit harder without losing their ambient and distant tone. A very catchy and feel good track, the band is clearly showing different sides to their songwriting.



The latest in the set is called "19" and it pulls you in straight away with it's almost surf guitars and mature pop tendencies. Touching on a vintage pop sound using 80's synths and combining them with their staple sound works incredibly well.



We wanted to have a chat with Azure Wolf to find out more about everything. So we did.



RAG: So let's start with "19". This track has a great melodic pop rock vibe to it with a bit of edge and pretty descriptive lyrics. Where did this track come from?


Victoria Backle (Singer/Songwriter, Guitar): “19” is actually written about COVID. We
had a whole summer lined up with live shows and of course everything got cancelled,
so we took to writing as a means to stay busy. “19” was the first song to come out of
that creative momentum. The nice thing about this song is that it kind of has a double
meaning. We’ve received a lot of feedback that people think nineteen is about age and
leaving home for the first time. I really appreciate that interpretation; it’s not what I had
in my mind while writing it, but I can really relate to that side of it too.


Isaac Foltz (Singer/Songwriter, Lead Guitar): We had a really awesome trajectory
planned for shows, releasing music and the whole year. The song was born out of
frustration of loss, but harnessed the spirit of fun and party-like energy that we have as
individuals. “19” was a lot fun to play guitar on. I tried to approach it with as much of a
care free sound as possible. Hopefully it ages well as a fun sounding relic of the
COVID-19 era.


Tommy Moore (Drums): From a drumming perspective, this is a very “Dave Grohl”
influenced beat. I’ve always wanted to do a sock-hop/50s style rhythm in a song and so
I tried it on this track. Grohl does it on Nirvana’s “Serve the Servants” and I always
thought it was cool that he used it in a rock style. The chorus was kind of boring, at
least from a drum standpoint, so I switched it up with a couple different time signatures
to accent the lyrical cadence that Victoria laid down.


RAG: "19" looks like it's part of a string of singles you've released throughout this year. Is there an album coming or more singles before the end of the year?


Victoria: We’ve been working incredibly hard on our debut album which is set to release
in 2021. We just wrapped up recording last month and we’re now in the mixing and
mastering process. There will be nine songs on the debut which will include a
revamped version of our single, “Love, Mother”, as well as eight other songs you
haven’t heard before. We’ve actually been writing so much that we have songs already
completed for a second album. We’ve been really riding this wave and don’t plan on
stopping any time soon.


Sean Spencer (Bass/Synth): We’ve had writing fever for some time now, honestly, and
the album we have coming out next year is the product of a lot of that ambition. As
Victoria mentioned, we’ve been writing songs for the second album already, and it still
feels like we are uncovering hidden pieces of who we are as a band in every new
composition, which feels exciting!



RAG: I also really loved "Dancing Bears" quite a lot. Some of these songs have a touch
of 80's alt-pop in the songwriting. What are your real musical influences? What
bands really changed you?


Victoria: We get that a lot with these songs and what’s funny is that the 80s are the least
inspiring decade for me. “Dancing Bears” was a Sean creation. The other three of us
were sitting outside smoking and we heard him play that synth intro part upstairs. We
quickly ran up and grabbed our instruments and within thirty minutes we had this song.
It was the first song we all wrote together, actually.


I have a huge infatuation with the 50s, 60s and 90s; especially Elvis Presley, Frank
Sinatra, The Beach Boys, The Beatles, Nirvana, The Doors, etc. I pretty much dig
anything where one of the main instruments is the human voice. I think you’ll hear a lot
of those influences on our debut album.


Isaac: “Dancing Bears” was a song that let me channel some of my favorite modern
indie-pop bands like Walk the Moon and The Bleachers. I also enjoy indie and post-rock
sounds like Interpol, The National, Arcade Fire, etc. Some of those records, especially
“Turn on the Bright Lights,” by Interpol have deeply impacted my sound on guitar. Deep
diving through old Kings of Leon albums like “Youth and Young Manhood” or Dawes’
“Nothing is Wrong” is what influenced me to want to write songs and be part of a band.
Sean: “Dancing Bears” is one of my favorites to play due to the dance-y, weaving nature
of the synth and beat. I think that it comes from a place in my musical history that I’ve
never really gotten to express on stage before. Dance/pop has always been a feel-good
genre for me and greatly inspired my parts in that song.


I’d say my approach to music really changed when I got into progressive rock: Dream
Theater, Rush, King Crimson, that sort of thing. Any band that felt like it was breaking or
bending compositional rules. Then I got into modern funk and jam bands like Lettuce,
Umphrey’s McGee, Sunsquabi and JRAD; that sort of connected the rule-breaking of
music with contemporary rock-band structure. You may not hear many of these
influences in Azure Wolf, but I think that they really structure how I approach
songwriting.


Tommy: I think we brought a couple of different influences into this track; some were
conscious and others were accidental. I think you can hear a lot of U2’s Joshua Tree in
this track, especially from Isaac’s guitar parts. Vocally, I think there’s a lot of influence
from Alanis Morsette and the beginning has a “Baba O’Reilly” feel going on. A lot of
different things at play, but overall it’s just an upbeat pop song.


RAG: How did all of this actually start for you?


Victoria: Azure Wolf was originally my solo folk project. It was just me, my songs and
an acoustic guitar. Isaac came on board as my lead guitarist and added that
fundamental Azure Wolf sound; we wouldn’t be the band we are without his tone.
Tommy eventually found me at an open mic and a professional connection quickly
turned into a friendship and the rest is history. Sean was the last to join us, but we

knew immediately after his audition that he was the missing piece. We have a power
line-up now I wouldn’t trade for the world. Just over one year later and Azure Wolf is a
completely evolved project.


Sean: I had been playing with a handful of other projects in the area, almost all of them
were jam or jazz focused, but I was just trying to envelope myself in as much music as
possible. I saw that Victoria had posted on social media about needing a fill-in bassist
and I liked what I’d heard from Azure Wolf, so I figured I’d be happy to help them along
until they found the right person. After the first time we played together I knew this band
was honestly in love with their craft. They were openly creative and collaborative and
they had a rocking sound that brought me back to what I had wanted to do with my
music when I first picked up a guitar 15 years ago. So when they asked me to join full
time I answered pretty quickly… “Yes!”



Isaac: I answered an ad, which sounds like how bands in the 80s got together. I was
sitting in a Taco Bell after having an audition earlier that evening for a band I was not a
good fit for. I saw on Facebook in a local music page that Victoria was looking for
another musician to add to her group, so I listened through her catalog of songs on
SoundCloud. I could immediately tell that she was incredibly talented, and I wanted to
be a part of anything she was doing creatively. She invited me to jam a few days later
and we clicked instantly.



RAG: Did you play live shows before and are you planning on performing live when the
time comes?


Victoria: Yes, we stay very active with live performances. We just headlined an outdoor
show at State Theatre in DC last weekend and it felt so good to play for a live audience
again. We’ve also done two livestreams, with a third one coming up, since COVID. You
can actually buy tickets for our upcoming livestream from DC9 on November 30th here:
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/azure-wolf-tickets-125366196669



RAG: You are doing very well and it looks like you're gaining fans. Is there any advice
you'd give to other aspiring bands or artists just trying to get heard out there?


Victoria: Stick to it. I think one of the biggest pieces of misinformation that a musician
can receive is that it’s all just supposed to “happen”. It doesn’t. It’s a ton of hard work,
shameless self-promotion and grinding your fingers to the bone – all just for the hope it
will be worth it in the end. Believe in your project, take it as far as you can and enjoy
the ride. That’s all we can do!


Tommy: Just try to go out and be in the mix as much as you can. If you have a few
songs then go hit every open mic or livestream it yourself if going out isn’t an option for
you. The biggest thing is to always create momentum for yourself so you can move

forward to the next thing. Be visible on every platform, network with people, pay it
forward and go out to other people’s shows. Show up for people and they will show up
for you. I found Azure Wolf by going out and checking out open mics. I wasn’t even
looking for a band, but you never know who you’ll meet!


Isaac: A year ago, my go-to advice and personal mantra was “play shows, don’t suck.”
With shows being limited and phased out for the year, it seems like dated advice. Now
is a perfect time to focus on the intention of your art and creativity. Most of what we’ve
written has been during this year, having no shows, and only time to ourselves. Self-
reflection is an excellent pathway to honest creation.


RAG: Do you have anything you'd like to express to your fans before we go?


Victoria: We feel incredibly grateful for everyone who believes in what we’re doing.
Azure Wolf is indebted to the friends, family and fans that have loyally supported us
since the beginning. We will always do our best to make you all proud and to continue
making music that is honest and authentic.


Sean: Thank you, thank you, thank you for every effort made to help us pursue this wild
dream. Every moment of success for us is shared with all of you at heart. I wish all of
you safety, well-being and happiness. - Recording Artists Guild


"NoVA band sets gig at State Theatre"

Azure Wolf is a female-lead indie rock band that formed earlier this year in Winchester, Va., though the musicians involved have been playing around the area for years.

The band consists of Victoria Backle on lead vocals, Isaac Foltz on guitar, Tommy Moore on drums and Alexandria’s Sean Spencer on bass and synth.

“A little over a year ago, I was just a solo project and Tommy was in another band, and we both ended up playing the same Open Mic night,” Backle said. “We decided to try together and got Isaac and Sean on board, and it all just quickly fell into place.”

Earlier this year, the band performed in numerous venues in Washington, D.C., including the famous Black Cat, The Pie Shop and O’Shaughnessy’s. During the Australian bush fires in February, the band put together a benefit concert that included themselves and three other D.C.-based bands to raise money for the efforts to fight the fires. They raised a total of $1,200 during the three-hour show.

“We had a whole summer lined up, with about a dozen shows cancelled, so we were really disappointed,” Backle said. “In the long run, it might have benefited us because we wouldn’t have been able to write all the new songs that we have if we were just focusing on our live performance. COVID sucks but it gave us the opportunity to sit with ourselves and really discover our sound.”

Although the pandemic has kept the band at bay for most of the past few months, they have managed to play a few outdoor concerts and will be coming to the State Theatre on Oct. 17 for free outdoor event.

“We’ve had a couple of livestream concerts as well, trying to stay busy in creative ways,” Backle said. “This is really our real first concert back and we’re super excited to have a real crowd.”

On the night, the band will play a few new songs that it hasn’t played live yet, and feel it is going to offer something different to those who may have seen them early on in their existence.

“We’ve been working on our stage performance and interacting with the audience and getting them involved, and we’re real excited to bring some new stuff and energy, and just have people to enjoy live music with again,” Backle said. “We will have some singles that have already been released and then some that will be going on our new album.”

You see, Azure Wolf used some of its downtime this summer recording their debut album, “Sin and Sand,” which was recorded at Poetown Music in Strasburg.

“It took a few months but we’re all really happy with it,” Backle said. “COVID pushed it along. We were writing like crazy and didn’t have a lot of shows to play, so we just focused on finishing this. We didn’t plan on putting an album out until 2022, but now we’ll have this out early 2021.”

As an English major in college, Backle noted she’s always been a writer and find inspiration for her songs from a “deep place of hurt.”

“It’s the way that I process things and words just come to me when I’m sitting down, playing my guitar. I don’t usually have control of what comes out—I’m just a conduit if you will,” Backle said. “I’ve been writing all my life and this last year it has come out in a lyrical way. This year has given me a chance to use my writing to connect with people and their hurt.”

Since touring isn’t an option right now, Azure Wolf is trying to stay busy on social media and will continue to do livestreams and outdoor events when they become available.

“With our livestream events, we try to get other local musicians involved because we know so many bands who are trying to get onto these livestreams and we want to give the community a way to hear great music and stay safe,” Backle said. “We really appreciate the love and support we’ve seen and hopefully we will continue to bring it!”

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"9+1 Q&A with Azure Wolf"

What inspired you to first start making music? And how did you come to be in your current incarnation? Or if you prefer, a brief bio about you.

Azure Wolf has had a fast and transformative year. It started out as a solo acoustic/folk project (Victoria Backle). After doing some open mics and local acoustic shows, it didn’t take long for people to take notice of the project. Eventually, it turned into a four-piece folk band which included Isaac Foltz on the lead guitar. The band performed well in the DC and NOVA area but it wasn’t until the band went through some changes and added Tommy Moore on the drums and Sean Spencer to the bass did the band find their true sound. Now, Azure Wolf is a four-piece dark-indie rock band with a huge sound. We feel like we finally found that sound we’ve been looking for. – Victoria

I had the great fortune of talented musical friends I’d met through high school, the orchestra, or in my neighborhood, and got into the jam session scene. That helped introduce me to tons of new music and practice learning music in the moment. Basically since I had the chance to play music with someone else, I’ve been eager for opportunities to collaborate and create with all the talented folks in this craft, and every single one of those times has pushed me to where I am as a musician now. – Sean

Provide us with some info about your latest release…

“Love, Mother” is a song written from the perspective of the Earth. It’s a dark and ambient experience and we wanted to make the song seem urgent and angry.
This song was initially written for a benefit event we planned in DC for the Australian wildfires. We wanted an Earth-centered song and it just ended up exploding into something amazing from there. – Victoria

“Love, Mother” was actually the first song concept I heard when looking into linking up with Azure Wolf, and it blew me away from the first play. There’s a compassion mixed with urgency that I think really captures so much about our generation’s challenges, and the way it’s delivered in that song is chilling. – Sean

Which ones would you consider your main influences both music-wise & non-music-wise?

The way Dave Keuning from The Killers plays guitar and writes always stood out to me. He understands the perfect blend between rhythm and lead parts that make a song complete. – Isaac
Fleetwood Mac, Alt-J, David Lynch, Turnover, Slowdive. – Tommy
Alt-J, Stevie Nicks, John Mayer, The Doors, Elvis Presley, Carl Sagan, many, many more. – Victoria

Music-wise, I learn the most from delving into the jazz/funk fusion scene. There is an incredible amount of creativity and barrier-pushing going on in that realm. Lettuce, Snarky Puppy, Thank You Scientist, Little Tybee. I am also constantly inspired by the independent producers and creators on YouTube or streaming, like Marc Rebillet and Red Means Recording (Jeremy Blake). So much access to so much originality these days, it’s awesome. – Sean

In what way does your sound differ from the rest genre-related artists/bands and why should we listen to your music? In other words, how would you describe your sound?

Azure Wolf has this awesome ambiguity of new creation. So much of the music we play channels that perfect mix of new, vulnerable exploration with the classic iterations of attachment, purpose, observation, and loss. Really, it’s an incredible thing to hear them both interact, and I think listeners will feel like they’ve heard these songs before in their own hearts, and relate to them on that personal level. – Sean

I think the biggest strength this band has is the diversity among all of us. Tommy brings a hard rock edge with his drums, Isaac’s lead guitar is airy and dream-like, Sean has a funky jam-band background that he brings to his bass playing and I tend to lean towards folk/singer-songwriter vibes. Between the four of us, I think we really combine into something special and unique. – Victoria

I feel like most of the songs start out as folk songs and then the rest of the band reworks it into something bigger. We get bored really easily so we are always looking to do something different than the last time we wrote something. A lot of “Love, Mother” was combining ideas that everyone always wanted to play in a song and trying to compromise and mold those ideas together. – Tommy

Please name your 3 desert islands albums, movies & books…

Sam’s Town by The Killers, Boyhood (Movie), Stories Don’t End by Dawes. – Isaac

Albums: In The Court Of The Crimson King by King Crimson, Declaration of Dependance by Kings of Convenience, Harmony of Difference by Kamazi Washington. Movies: Cloud Atlas, The Godfather, Interstellar. Books: The Doors of Perception by Aldous Huxley, Meditations by Marcus Aurelius, Food of the Gods by Terrence McKenna. – Sean

Do you prefer studio or performing live and why?

Live is always fun because depending on where you play you always sound a little different. I think the challenge is always trying to sound consistent no matter where you play, so we enjoy that challenge every time we play somewhere. Also there’s nothing like an audience-band connection. – Tommy

Live performances, hands down. I greatly appreciate the art of crafting something so attentively in the studio, but a live performance has an interactivity that is impossible to feel anywhere else… and it’s great no matter which side of the stage you’re on! – Sean

I honestly prefer the studio because that’s where you’re really able to get creative and turn nothing into something. I love being able to layer songs and by the end of the day have a tangible result. It’s a great feeling. – Victoria

Is there any funny-unique story you would like to share with us, always in relation to your music ‘career’?



Which track of your own would you point out as the most unique and why?

Black Fur (will be released March 22nd). It started out as a loose idea. It wasn’t working as a hard rock song in the chorus and we all knew it. Basically we worked it to death and we were never happy with it. Eventually, we took a step and said let’s do the opposite of what we were trying to do and somehow that worked. We are pretty militant when it comes to song writing, we will play a song repeatedly until we get it right and no one complains. – Tommy

I think Black Fur is among my favorite tracks. The song itself feels like a journey, and the chorus is one of the more pensive portions of the track, which is unique. – Sean

Would you like to share with our readers your future plans?

A whole lot of shows to meet a whole lot of people and share a whole lot of new music!! – Sean

I can say that I hope we are touring in the next year and getting to do what we love full time. I think we have something incredible here and I want the world to be a part of it. – Victoria

Free question!!! (Ask yourself a question) you wish to answer and haven’t been given the opportunity…

Who would I like to share the stage with most?

I’d love to share the stage with St. Paul and the Broken Bones. Those guys know how to put on a jaw-dropping show, and I would be incredibly honored. – Sean

Curated by: Christos Doukakis - Last Day Deaf


Discography

Azure Wolf - Dancing Bears (Single) - Released March 2020

Azure Wolf - 19 (Single) - Released May 2020

Azure Wolf - Demo (EP) - Released October 2020

Azure Wolf - Pieces / Both Hands (Double Single) - Released February 1, 2021

Azure Wolf - Black Fur (Single) - Released April 2021

Azure Wolf - Chateau/Honey Rush (Double Single) - Released May 2021

Azure Wolf - Crash and Burn (Single) - Released July 2021

Azure Wolf - Tensions (Album) - Releasing Fall 2021

Photos

Bio

Azure Wolf is a female-fronted indie rock band from Winchester, VA.  Originally a solo folk project established by front-woman, Victoria Backle, the project quickly grew into a four piece band with an ethereal sound.  Since forming in March of 2020, they've been busy writing and performing through livestreams and virtual festivals across the world, including Brazil's Sonnar Music Festival.  Having to sort through the difficulty of building a band in a post-COVID world, they've focused heavily on single releases and developing their live act.  Azure Wolf has four new singles releasing in early 2021 before they drop their first full length album in the fall.  "Black Fur" is the first of their singles which will be released everywhere on April 2, 2021.


The band consists of four members:

Victoria Backle - singer/songwriter & rhythm guitar

Isaac Foltz - Lead guitar & backup vocals

Thomas Moore - Drums

Sean Spencer - Bass & Synth

Band Members