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Concert Review: Virgin Wolves and We're Wolves at Lola's

Virgin Wolves and We’re Wolves Feb. 2 Lola’s Saloon 2736 West 6th St., Fort Worth 817-877-0666 www.lolasfortworth.com www.thevirginwolves.com; facebook.com/werewolvesFTWTX

Posted 11:18am on Monday, Feb. 04, 2013

From wolves, we get dogs. Scientists say that our sympathetic relationship with canines played a major role in our emergence as a dominant species on this planet. My dog doesn’t seem all that useful, but I love dogs, and so when I saw that Lola’s was featuring a mostly canine bill on Saturday I had to head that way.

First up was Them Hounds out of Oklahoma. I’d heard good things about them from everyone at Lola’s, but they had finished playing by the time I hiked in from east Texas; parking, as usual, was an issue Saturday at Lola’s. Several of the local businesses have “fenced off the watering hole” as it were, by sending predatory tow trucks to drag off anyone who parks there. So be careful where you park, and wear comfortable shoes because the only two parking spaces Lola’s owns were taken up by the Salsa Limon food truck.

I found a spot on the rail up on the new elevated deck back by the sound booth. I love this addition, because it’s just high enough to sit on a stool and see the band, and the sound is at its best back there.

We're Wolves took the stage, consisting of Austin Adams (drums), Colin Cashman (keyboards, guitar, bass), Rob Hine (lead guitar, keyboards) and Riley Knight (vocals, bass). They are kind of a psychedelic rock kind of band, with a bit of The Doors in the sound somewhere (especially the vocals). And the vocals are the key to this thing, as Riley Knight is a powerful and expressive front man who completely owned the stage on Saturday. As Riley put down the bass, and keyboards kicked in, there was even more energy -- just a man, a microphone, a powerful voice and a powerful head of hair. This is a band to watch, not just listen to.

As We're Wolves left the stage, I waited in line outside for Salsa Limon. But when I got up to the window I found that they had discontinued their legendary barbacoa tacos. I’ve had their other tacos; it’s just not the same. I went back in to the show taco-deprived.

Denton-based Virgin Wolves were the third act of the night. The lineup was Jaimeson Robbins on vocals, Kristin Leigh on bass, Steve Phillips on drums, Chase Robbins and Carson Coldiron rounding things out on guitar. Riley may have owned the stage a half hour before, but Jaimeson took it over and made it her own. She explored every inch of it, and kept the audience on the hook throughout.

This is weapons-grade rock and roll. It’s not for the faint of heart; it’s not pop, or trendy, it’s music played hard and fast by people who perform hard and fast.

There was an effortless, casual violence to the thing, like someone destroying a piano with a sledgehammer – not out of anger but just because it amuses them. Their recorded music good, but their stage show is better.

Despite the parking situation, Lola’s put on a great show (as always). We’re Wolves and Virgin Wolves were the middle of the bill, Oil Boom was setting up as I left and they always put on a show. But the various wolves were the point of this exercise. While there is a lot to be said for their domesticated descendants, sometimes you have to back to the wild origins of the species.

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