Above: Mateo Vosganian of Wild Adriatic. Photo: Kiki Vassilakis
Last weekend, in the midst of a packed tour, the boys in Wild Adriatic released a new EP Our Time. A normal band might have given themselves some time to plan a big album release. But the only luxury they afforded themselves this weekend was deciding to fly rather than drive to Texas for two gigs on the tail end of an exhaustive tour through the Midwest and southeastern United States. Not to mention the band is only weeks away from The Summit music festival they host at The Queensbury Hotel in Glens Falls.
“We’ve never been great at planning,” jokes drummer Mateo Vosganian.
For 7 years Wild Adriatic and its core duo, highschool friends lead singer/guitarist Travis Gray and Vosganian, have operated under what Vosganian calls a “house” mentality whereby they tend to the people around them as part of their own family. It has seen them build lasting relationships with friends, promoters, fellow musicians and artists. The band has grown as well. Bassist Rich Derbyshire helped cement the band’s sound and live show and saxophonists Vicki and Mike Oehman have helped round out their more soul-focused sound. The band has grown away from straightforward roots rock to a lusher sound.
With an impressive fan base, a studious merch operation, an accessible social media presence Wild Adriatic never seems to be without a gig.
“We have reached this level of comfort where we are always OK. We have these friends everywhere—people who will let us crash at their house, promoters who will always book us. When we started, we didn’t know where we would rest our heads,” says Vosganian.
The new four-song EP Our Time is a statement of intention as the band reflects on its growth and looks forward to breaking bigger. “When we first started the band, we were happy with playing clubs. Now, 7 years in, the industry just isn’t black and white. We’ll be playing to 20,000 people at a festival one day and playing a living room to a few people the next.”
Vosganian says the band intends on releasing new material every year but they’ve got a larger album in the works. They spent time in Nashville working with various writers and they expect to lock themselves in a studio in Lake George early next year to hash out a new full length.
“We realize writing and playing makes us better at our jobs. And the nature of the industry is that the more content you have, the better it is,’ says Vosganian.
Growing the Family
The relationships cultivated by the band have manifested in various collaborations, sit-ins, tours and annual appearances at The Rock Boat—an aquatic rock concert hosted by Sister Hazel—and Wild Adriatic’s own Queensbury-based festival, The Summit. This summer Wild Adriatic took a host of local bands and musicians with them to Appleton, WI for Mile of Music Festival.
Local bands Dark Honey, The Sea The Sea, Girl Blue, Wild Adriatic, Let’s Be Leonard, Candy Ambulance and paradisa at Mile of Music.
Photo: Zach Durocher
“We are always willing to help other bands out if we can,” says Vosganian. “We have that track record—just tell us what you need. We think it’s important to lead by example. The golden rule and all that shit. Lynyrd Skynyrd has no reason to call us again but they did and I think it’s because we’re easy to work with. We’re good as we can be.”
That “house’ philosophy was at play in Texas this weekend. Airport delays had them arrive in Austin after the car-rental agency had closed and it seemed like things weren’t off to the best start. But a friend picked them up from the airport and got them to the house they were staying at. They played a good gig on Friday night at Last Concert Cafe but the following night’s show in San Marcos was canceled by the venue. A Facebook post later the band was drinking with friends and fans at a local brewery. “It was nice to catch up with everyone after a whirlwind weekend of travel,” says Vosganian.
Expect a similar laid-back friendly vibe if you attend The Summit next weekend. Vosganian recommends getting a room at the hotel and hanging out in the lobby to catch up with folks going to local breweries, bike tours and exploring local art incubator The Shirt Factory.
The Summit takes place Nov. 8-9 at The Queensbury Hotel in Glens Falls. Single day tickets are $25, a weekend pass is $45