Spun: Twilight Hotel

By Ken Clarke

Former Winnipeggers Brandy Zdan and Dave Quanbury now call Austin, Texas home, although their recently released third album was recorded in Los Angeles. When Wolves Go Blind loosely documents their journey from Canada through America, and it doesn’t sound like it was a fun trip.

The music is sparse and dark in nature with laid back reverb-drenched guitar courtesy of Zdan and Quanbury. Sleepy-style accordion, keyboards, bass, sax and flugal horn round out the instrumentation along with minimalistic drums. Zdan is the more gifted vocalist of the two, though they create fine harmonies when singing together. Their lyrics fit the dreary musical tone. In “Frozen Town,” we’re clued in as to why the duo left their hometown of Winnipeg, “Now that I’m back in town, I don’t want me around. . . . And it’s too cold, it’s too cold for car thieves tonight.” The aptly titled “Darkness” features Zdan’s haunting voice repeating the line, “Oh I have seen the darkness” to a funeral dirge musical accompaniment.

Despite the bleak overtones prevalent throughout the disc, or perhaps because of them, When The Wolves Go Blind is definitely worth picking up, though it’s definitely not recommended for dance parties– or any parties for that matter.

Leave a comment