From playing host to bands such as Old Crow Medicine Show to being the stomping grounds of the Alabama Shakes, Huntsville and North Alabama have been a great breeding ground for some very charismatic and uncommon musical acts over the years.
This is certainly the case with The Wolves of Chernobyl, an Indie Folk band from Huntsville that has been a popular act at some of our town’s favorite breweries and festivals.
Huntsville’s favorite Apocalyptic Folk band recently returned from playing four shows in three days at the South By Southwest conference in Austin, Texas.
As they take stock of the aftermath and plan out the upcoming release of their next record, I talked with their lead singer Tyler Nafe and asked them five questions about where the band is at the moment and how their future is shaping up.
1. What was the most memorable thing you experienced at South By Southwest In Austin?
Everything about the event in Austin is a “huge spectacle,” said Nafe. “We saw one guy who was a famous YouTube personality running around in a leopard print Speedo hugging everyone.” Personalities and encounters like these help promote the Keep Austin Weird ethos, which
Personalities and encounters like these help promote the Keep Austin Weird ethos, which Nafe says they love taking part in.
2. With literally thousands of bands at South By Southwest, what is it that makes you stand out?
Nafe says it’s a huge challenge, but one that the Wolves have a built-in way of competing.
“We have weird and eclectic costumes,” he told me. “Everyone else there to play shows looks like they’re all part of a Skinny Jeans Mafia, they all just kind of look the same.”
The Wolves would instead wear their stage costumes both at shows and walking around Austin, which garnered the band some attention from some local Austin papers and music magazines.
“You catch them with that and then catch them with some high energy music,” said Nafe.
3. What are some of the challenges for a band in the Huntsville area?
“You end up having to DIY everything, and it’s tough to cold call into another market where you’ve never played and don’t really know anybody.” Instead,
Instead, Nafe mentions that they’ve utilized forums like Reddit communities for specific towns to reach out to new fans and venue owners. “We hope by the time the new record hits, we can really use that to aggressively push through to college radio,” Nafe mentioned.
4. Where do the Wolves hope to be a year from now?
Nafe hopes that the upcoming new record from the Wolves will make a big splash. “You always hope when you put out new music, it will draw attention from new fans and also management talent.”
“We’ve figured out a lot of things on our own, but for the next jumping off point it means that someone in management takes a good look and comes to us with opportunities to market it in new channels.”
5. What do the Wolves have in store for Panoply?
“Lots of energy,” says Nafe. “If you play as much as we’ve played lately, it means that you’re sharp and anticipating things well.”
The Wolves will be playing some of the new songs they’ve been developing, which Nafe mentions will maintain this kind of energy. “I think we can put on a higher energy show than just about anybody else,” he mentions. “Even if we play the ten songs that everyone in Huntsville knows, it’s going to be like nothing else they’ll see there.”