Wolf Gang – Live

Academy 2, Manchester. 10/12/2009
By Simon Poole

It’s bloody freezing cold again tonight, but thankfully for a change the heavens are holding back the rain, making this an unusually dry night in Manchester. For this I am truly grateful, as there is a 45 minute delay in the doors opening and by now the queue is stretching from the main building down to the Acadamy 1.

As I enter the auditorium this evening’s first act Wolf Gang is already onstage with a couple of technicians frantically jibbing around the stage, seemingly struggling to get the PA sorted.

Max McElligot who is solely the gang in Wolf Gang has a three piece band with him for the purposes of playing live tonight. Being of a part Irish and part German background and having a history professor father and a violinist mother with a passion for classical music, this Scottish raised lad is in interesting character. He moved to London to study at LSE but dropped out of completing his degree to concentrate on his love of music, even though a job at Foreign Office was on the cards.

Finally it would seem that the sound technicians have managed to complete their task and as McElligot introduces himself, the almost full room give out a welcoming cheer. From the off, it is clear that his influences are firmly set in the late seventies and early eighties. Unlike many other acts that have emerged over the last couple of years, his style is taken less from the totally electronic side and more from the time when already established musicians were just experimenting with incorporating the odd synth into their music, such as Bowie, Talking Heads and Roxy Music.

As he launches into ‘Nighflying’ it is obvious that he is confident and comfortable with his own vocals as he unafraid to raise the pitch mid line, much in the vein of Bryan Ferry. This, along with the catchy music, is certainly getting this mixed age group crowd bouncing from the off.

His latest single ‘King & All of His Men’ which was released last month, is a cracking tune that will stick around in your head for a long while and will hopefully start to put him on the map.

The last of his 5 song set list is ‘Lions’ and even though this has been a short showcase of what he can do, he has proved himself a contender.

If you are a fan of any of the aforementioned bands and newer acts such as MGMT, I would urge you to check him out.

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