Where the Wild Things Kind of Are

For a band that describes themselves as "NewCountryPunkWave," Max and the Wild Things are certainly carving an interesting niche for themselves in the world of music. They've been compared to, by at least one critic, as "breezy Jonathan Richman-with-a-banjo approach to rock." They name Johnny Cash and the Misfits among their inspirations. (Where is Maurice!) 

I first learned about them via the magic/wonders of last.fm. Struck by the name and then proceedingly hooked onto their catchy and charming songs, I sent a few questions over to Cole Traynor, their general manager. They were then answered by Aidan, lead singer/guitarist/banjo player.


Where did you get the idea for your band from? 

The idea to form a band came from my brother, Cole. I was performing alone and he had recently quit his job as a traveling ale salesman. He bought bass and we found a drummer, then few more. 

How have things been going for you guys lately? 

Lately we've been finishing our second album, "Neptune's Crown." The recording was at Welcome to 1979 recording studio in Nashville, TN. We plan to release it 11/11/11. Our drummer and guitarist from the first album left to work on their own projects and we brought in our current drummer, Andy Wilmoth, and ukulelist, Willy Guy Arnot. The sound has definitely changed, I hope for the better.

UKULELES ARE AWESOME (except on Eddie Vedder albums)

Is the fact you are named after a children's book a reoccuring motif in your music? (like do you base songs off it, etc)

The name of the band doesn't have too much influence on the material, but definitely on the presentation. I learned music from bluegrass and I try to keep its drive and wildness. Also I like to incorporate some improvisation (though not too much). The "wild things" will stay wild.

What's the backstory to your band?

I wrote and performed some of the songs from the first album when I was in college in  Worcester, MA. When the "wild things" formed I started writing material that would translate to all the musicians we had in and out of the band. With "Neptune's Crown," these songs are written to be played/recorded with these musicians and the parts they've written give the music a new dimension.

What's one thing you really want people to know?

I really want people to know that banjos are cool. I know it's not likely, but I can hope.


and closing on that note, their debut album is available free online!