The Raised By Wolves
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The Raised By Wolves

Bethesda, Maryland, United States | SELF

Bethesda, Maryland, United States | SELF
Band Alternative Rock

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"One Track Mind: The Raised by Wolves, Sadie Hawkins"

Standout Track: No. 3, "Freddy Freaker," from Sadie Hawkins, the debut album from Bethesda band The Raised by Wolves. An ideal end-of-summer track, it channels straightforward power-pop, layering synths over bright guitars. But it's the guitar work of Ben Eskin, 23, that pushes the song into memorable territory. At first, he's content to sound like The Police (thanks to an Andy Summers–like guitar riff), but the song reaches its crescendo with something more like catchy post-rock. - Washington City Paper


"Listen: The Raised By Wolves' Sadie Hawkins in Full"

When Washington, D.C. duo The Raised By Wolves' video for "Freddy Freaker" dropped earlier this week, the song once again worked its way pretty impressively into our skulls. In it we hear bits of Elliott Smith, and the Flaming Lips, but also -- curiously -- The Police. The track, along with "Stung (Song For Him)" is a stand out on the band's 9-song debut album Sadie Hawkins (released July of last year), which we're happy to share here in full here. The Raised By Wolves are two lifelong friends -- Dusty Durston (vocals, drums) and Ben Eskin (guitar, bass, keys, backing vocals) -- who've been writing music together since middle school, and on Hawkins that easy familiarity with one another's music styles shine through. You can listen to the album and watch "Freddy Freaker" below. Enjoy! - The Village Voice


"REVIEW: THE RAISED BY WOLVES, “SADIE HAWKINS”"

On The Raised By Wolves’ Sadie Hawkins, there is a charm and lack of pretension accompanied by a truly interesting selection of tunes that both embrace and defy the conventions of pop songwriting. As each song on this release took a turn over the speakers, I found myself more and more surprised not only at the quality of the material, but the maturity of the arrangements. There’s an immediate accessibility to the lyrics and melodies employed, but this is a record that really grows on you as a listener. In my world, that means an album has “legs,” and will continue to reveal more of itself rather methodically over repeated listens.
It all starts out innocently enough with “Cowboys, Hombre,” a fairly innocuous track that gives the listener some time to grab hold of The Raised By Wolves’ sound. However, as soon as radio-ready “Stung (Song for Him)” hits the speakers, it’s clear we’re dealing with a cheeky lyricist by vocalist and drummer Dusty Durston. In fact, it’s this particular song that first hooked me into listening to the bulk of this record. “Freddy Freaker” begins to push the album forward, with “Broken Neck of the Woods” propelling this duo’s propensity for unorthodox breaks in melody in unexpected places. It’s a very melody-driven record, and yet, the material as a whole dodges and weaves in atypical fashion. And this is a very good thing.
“Twin Resentful,” essentially the spine of the album cutting right down the center of the song selections, is really where the material starts to split from sounding even less conventional and exploring a looser, more jangly sound, employing shimmery guitars as on “Strange Acquaintance.” The two real standouts on Sadie Hawkins, however, are “Shangri-La-Di-Da” and the closing track, “My First Song Was Also My Last.” The former is a track born for sunny summer days cruising with the top down or blaring music out of the apartment window. It feels good, treads lightly and packs a lot musically into just under four minutes. The latter shows yet another side of this duo, and one that shows a great deal of promise for the future. Again, a few unconventional choices make this one of the most interesting tracks among the group, and it’s a fitting end to a surprisingly effective set of songs that establish an ambitious precedent for what could be a band to watch out for.
Listening to Sadie Hawkins for the first time is one of those magical musical moments that just hurtles at you from out of the blue. A couple of 22-year-olds who have all the tools they need to make interesting, uniquely branded pop-rock. Sadie Hawkins is a purely indie pop release recorded in a “godforsaken basement” and brilliantly pulled off by a duo laying down all the vocals, drums/percussion, guitar, bass and keys on their own. The result is a diamond in the rough; with a little bit of polish and the right presentation, its valuation will only increase. - Indie-Music.com


"PREMIERE: THE RAISED BY WOLVES – STUNG (SONG FOR HIM)"

Before I even begin, can we just admit that The Raised By Wolves is a great band name? They deserve a mini-applause for branding alone. But the songwriting duo — made up of of Ben Eskin and Dusty Durston — is more than just a clever name.

The two hail from Bethesda, MD where they grew up together and began writing songs in 2004. After what I can only assume was a Superbad-esque heartbreaking moment where they decided to attend different schools, the two committed to a long-distance music project that only recently began to take final shape in terms of a recording, their debut album Sadie Hawkins, which will be released July 23rd. We here at ATG are lucky enough to be premiering their first single from the album, “Stung (Song For Him)”.

The beginning of the track sees them doing a fairly commendable Strokes impersonation, but at the 0:20 mark, when that first lush guitar is strummed, you can tell there is some real substance to this song. The pre-chorus explodes into a staccato’ed march that would make a Photo Album-era Ben Gibbard proud before allowing the chorus to settle into a very 90′s alternative pop bounce. By the time the second chorus broke into a fuzzed out guitar solo, the inner Harvey Danger fan in me was bursting with happiness. With “Stung”, The Raised By Wolves have found a way to take that decidedly 90′s simplistic pop sensibility and modernize it with a youthful energy and awareness to create a song that feels both classic and refreshing.

The group prides themselves on a “dedication to writing heartfelt pop songs and presenting them in unorthodox ways,” and if this is any indication of what we can expect from Sadie Hawkins when it’s released next week, then the DC area might have it’s newest band to latch onto.

PS: If you want to learn more about The Raised By Wolves, I’ll be doing a first-listen and interview with the band after hours at the Brightest Young Things office with them this week, so keep your eyes peeled for that next week on BYT as well too. - All Things Go


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

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Bio

The Raised By Wolves are a musical duo comprised of Dusty Durston and Ben Eskin, hailing from Bethesda, Maryland, a suburb of Washington, DC where the two grew up together.

 

After beginning to write songs together in 2004, the two have used the past decade to hone their musical craft. After deciding to attend different colleges in 2008, they began a musical project that they would write both remotely and when they reunited on academic breaks.

 

The two spent much of 2012-2013 privately polishing their written repertoire and recording their sonic experiments. On July 23, 2013, mere weeks after introducing themselves to the public as a band, The Raised By Wolves released “Sadie Hawkins,” their 9-song debut album which they wrote, recorded, and produced on their own. The album is representative of their dedication to writing heartfelt pop songs and presenting them in unorthodox ways.

 

As the album has received both critical and popular acclaim, the band has risen to prominence in the DC scene with their high-energy 5-piece live show, culminating in a local showcase that sold out the legendary 9:30 Club.  

 

In April 2014, the band premiered its first music video for their song “Freddy Freaker” on Purevolume.com, which the site described as “hypnotizing.” The video made waves in the blogosphere and landed the group a feature on The Village Voice a mere two days after the premiere.  

Band Members