Review By: Dan Chapman
As The Ballroom Thieves’ third studio release, A Wolf in the Doorway showcases not only their ability to upgrade in production value, but also their songwriting and musicianship. The vocals are truly showcased in this record with the concise and crisp vocals from guitar player, Martin Earley. Behind him sits Devin Mauch playing an interesting percussion set-up and Calin Peters with soft falsettos and cello. Often times, it is difficult for a three-piece folk unit to come up with unique music, but since the Ballroom Thieves feature enough unique instruments in their line-up, they have no issue. A Wolf in the Doorway opens with the hard-hitting and proud track, Archers. The rest of the album continues to carry the listener through unique and inspiring melodies with the emotion dictated very concisely by Mauch’s thuds, cracks, and crashes. The track Wild Woman was the first teasing released by the band and was the first thing to catch my ear. It’s playful tempo and melody flow well with lyrics of conquest.
I struggle to find any faults in this record. The sheer variety of tracks makes it incredibly easy to throw this record on repeat for several hours. I sat in my room the night I first heard this album and was simply taken back by the beauty. The seventh track, “Bury Me Smiling,” is such a humble exposure of emotion that I could not help getting choked up. Peter’s soft vocals and the guitar arpeggiates throughout cues the listener to a new tone brought into the record. The Ballroom Thieves have hit the nail on the head with this record and I expect to see big things in the future.
Tracks: 1, 5, 3, 7
RIYL: Mumford & Sons, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, Fleet Foxes