Max and the Wild Things
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Max and the Wild Things

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | SELF

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | SELF
Band Rock Americana


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"Music City and the Wild Things"

Occasionally, some unexpectedly fine stuff feeds its way under the wire and into my mailbox. Such is the case with Max and the Wild Things, a self-proclaimed "3-piece NewCountryPunkWave band from Nashville".

Not only is it encouraging to find concrete evidence that Tennessee continues to distil raw proof talent of the calibre of a first rate Jack Daniels, it is also unexpectedly heartening to hear it hailing from Music City and not Memphis; unparalleled purveyors of prime sound from Alex Chilton and the Box Tops to Elvis Aaron Presley and Sam Phillips' Sun Records.

Originally a sibling two-piece from West Swanzey, New Hampshire, the brothers Traynor have teamed up with drummer, Brendan Leahy for their debut EP: "Hands Down Mans Down". The following cut, while not on that release, more than admirably captures the visceral slap and punch of Max and the Wild Things in live performance. Expect to hear more from this quarter, here and elsewhere. - SibLINGSHOT on the bleachers

"Where the Wallace Things Are"

When you meet somebody based solely on a shared love of the single greatest basketball team the world has ever known, that’s not an immediate indication that you’ll see eye to eye on music. And when you meet that person and they hand you a demo based on that shared love for those heroes of the hardwood, your first instinct is not to ruin a potential friendship with your rather fascist critical instincts. But if the aforementioned sports franchise just happens to sign Rasheed Wallace to create a team with Voltron-like potential to destroy those gawddamn Lakers, well, we’re going to throw caution to the wind. Which was a good call, because Max & the Wild Things’ breezy Jonathan Richman-with-a-banjo approach to rock is totally part of our game.
Fri., July 31, 9 p.m., 2009 - The Nashville Scene

"Saturday Maybe"

Recorded on the 9th September, 2009 - 9/9/9 to those of you with a morbid fascination for emergency services numerology - "The Grass is Always Greener" is the second EP release from Nashville's Max and the Wild Things. Something of a minor cause for celebration in my own household, it further cements my partisan allegiance to siblings Aidan and Cole Traynor, and third man, Clint (Max) Wilson; replacing one-time wild thing, Brendan Leahy, on drums.

More than merely a celtic thing, listening to these Aidan Traynor compositions is a bit like being blasted back in time to the Pixies 4AD debut release with the mushrooms poking their crowns through the short grass; a chill dew on the collar.

Spare and electric and temporarily unhinged, the sound is at once as exuberant as a puppy digging for ribs, and as amnesiac as a pirate mining for azure on a cloudy weekend.

Stripped to the bone and confusedly eloquent.

As with their first release, "Hands Down Mans Down", the four songs featured were recorded at Welcome to 1979, "utilizing only analogue equipment manufactured in the mid-seventies as the perfect antidote to compressed digital orthodoxy". To quote myself.

That alone is enough to make me prick up my ears. Produced and engineered by Chris Mara, Mickie Martel, Bert Stone, Neil O'Neil and The Wild Things, it also leads off with a brand new studio outing - with brass ? - of the sublime "Without a Sound" featured here this summer, live in The Basement.

Last time around, zero siblings commented. Leaving me in a minority of one. I must reveal I was inordinately disappointed. Until. My friend Gus brought it up at my wedding reception. Somebody, clearly, was listening in after all; for a moment there I felt almost on a par with John Peel. Without the salary and pension, of course. Or a f@cking radio show even.

An odder Tennessee Waltz, it would be hard to imagine. Buckle up your leg. - SibLINGSHOT on the bleachers


Max and the Wild Things self-titled debut full length album was release July 2010.



Alt-alt-country blues infused rock band, Max and the Wild Things, formed in Nashville in 2009. The band takes you on a Deloreanride through genres with rootsy finger-picked guitar and banjo, punk bass lines, an eclectic barrage of drum beats, and uke madness.
Last year Max and the Wild Things released their self-titled debut album. The album has received praise from the blogosphere on both sides of the Atlantic and many spins on college radio stations. Recorded onto 2 inch tape at Welcome to 1979 studio, the retro sound serves the collection of 'deceptively catchy songs'.
The follow up record, Neptune's Crown, is in the can. Wind Through the Window, the album's first single, has been unleashed and shows musical growth from the bands punk-country roots yet still captures the raw train off the tracks feel of the band's previous work. Neptune's Crown lands 2012.

"This Nashville-based band plays it straight and direct...and the approach works. These songs were recorded onto 2" analog tape which may explain the nice organic sound. These guys play hummable guitar-driven pop/rock that is (thankfully) lacking in unnecessary overdubs. Songs are what drive this album...and there are plenty of smart substantial cuts to crunch your teeth into."

“Max and the Wild Things self-titled album is indescribable…the talent is indisputable”
~The Deli Magazine

"Concrete evidence that Tennessee continues to distil raw proof talent the caliber of a first rate Jack Daniels".

“Sounds like straight-up chillin”
~Adam Gold, Nashville Scene

“Sonically pleasant collection of the least obviously catchy songs of the year”
~Seth Graves, Nashville Scene

"The self titled album consists of 12 wonderfully constructed tracks that lead you on what can only be described as a musical journey throughout various pivotal era's in music"
~Not Another Blog