Charlotte, North Carolina (March 11, 2018) – It may have been a cold and rainy evening in Charlotte, NC outside, but with Wild Domestic and Falling Through April set to take the stage at The Evening Muse it was sure to be one hot show. As daylight faded in the Historic Arts District of NODA, the Muse opened its doors to fans of both hometown bands. Waiting for show time I watched as a steady stream of people visited the merch booth and members of both groups mingled with the crowd. Seeing the excitement and energy of the room grow my eagerness to see both bands perform was definitely on the rise. Adding to the suspense was the news from FTA guitarist, Dan Candia, that the band may have a surprise up their sleeves for their set as well.
Wild Domestic is an Indie/Alt-Rock band formed by Matt Carlson. After spending time in several other Charlotte area bands, he decided to break out on his own. Backed by Paul Fisher on drums and Colin Moser on bass, Wild Domestic started the night off on a softer note with “Left, Right” drawing you in with its ambient intro and soaring vocals. Then came the rolling bass line that led into the rocking “New Year, New Me“. Covering songs from both of the groups two EP’s, the self-titled, Wild Domestic, in 2015 and Singular in 2017, there was a wide range of musical dynamics expressing various influences. Songs like “Killing It” with a spin on your typical love song, to the political “What a Mess“, and the fun and quirky “Run“. Wild Domestic has a way of connecting with the crowd through their catchy hooks and sing-a-long lyrics, the crowd sometimes even sounding out above Matt. Giving the band a break, Matt stripped it down for a solo performance of “Firewall” showcasing a delicate, yet powerful vocal performance. Wild Domestic ended the night with the upbeat, driving songs “Author” and “What a Mess”
Falling Through April (FTA) was next up to perform in support of their newest album, which was just released January 19, 2018, through Page 2 Music. Founding members, Dan Candia (guitar, vocals), Jim Siani (guitar), Dave Piontek (bass, vocals) and Taylor Foster (drums, percussion), have seen a few changes with the lead singer position before Mikaela Salazar joined the group in 2016, having found the band through a Craigslist’s ad. FTA has steadily kept busy with a new album, filming a music video, supporting acts like The Pretty Reckless, Pop Evil, Flyleaf, and playing such festivals as SXSW and Vans Warped Tour. The single “Desperate Measures” has brought FTA much attention being added to syndicated radio programs, charting on the YouTube Alternative Hotlist, added to Footlockers in-store network at locations in 23 countries, as well as several other music outlets.
FTA has a captivating stage show that keeps your attention the whole time. Each member has their own unique style, which when blended together, create an eclectic sound. Full of energy the band showcased songs like “The Culprit” and “Coast to Coast” from their newest album, Zodiac. Better off Alone grabbed my attention with Makaela’s relatable lyrics about relationships, that was followed by her story about having changed her view on relationships and self-growth that led into “Seven Tries“.
Mid-set FTA called Wild Domestic’s frontman Matt Carlson to join them on a song (this was the surprise). What I didn’t know is that Matt had been FTA’s former lead singer and this was their first reunion in nearly two years; you’d never know it had been that long. The band went headstrong into song with Matt stepping in like he never left. Fans stood in awe, taking in the nostalgia when seeing the pair together again.
Speaking with Mikaela, she mentioned the groups’ album wasn’t meant to be a story like a lot of bands do, but a record to show many facets of the groups’ music and lyrics. Transcribing this to a live show as well made for a great set by FTA that had driving rock hooks, soft subtle moments, and upbeat pop rock. You could really see and hear each members’ influence in the group with the structure of songs allowing each instrument to be showcased at various times. The band leaves everything on stage putting their all into every note played and sang.
After the show I had a moment to catch up with the members of Falling Through April and chat a little more; from road stories, to favorite venues and everything in between. It’s evident this is a group that loves what they do and has a hard work ethic to achieve their goals. Mikaela mentioned recent work on a new video to be released soon and Dan teased about an upcoming summer tour. I couldn’t pry any more info out of him, but he did note that the band is very excited about it and would be announcing it as soon as they can. Stay tuned to Splice! We’ll be sure to share the details as soon as they drop.
Senior Photojournalist: Michael Bragg
More about Falling Through April:
Even though they are originally from disparate parts of the country, Charlotte, NC based Alt-Rockers Falling Through April have come together to form a cohesive unit in a city that is rich in music history and has a thriving independent rock scene. Their energy is abundant in their live shows and in the music from their new album “Zodiac”, which was released on January 19th, 2018 through Page 2 Music.
Falling Through April released first single and video “Desperate Measures” in September of 2017 and have gained significant visibility: Google Play Music’s Modern Rock radio channel and iDobi radio were early supporters and are playing the song. The video premiered @ Alternative Press and debuted @ #13 on the YouTube Alternative Hotlist playlist. The video will be featured on the Footlocker In-Store network in 1,835 stores in 23 countries starting January 1st as well as several other major brand retail outlets. “Desperate Measures” is playing in over 3800 Health Clubs worldwide, and has been added to syndicated shows like MusicMix USA and Sidewalks TV, among others.
The band performed “Coast To Coast” on CBS affiliate WBTV Channel 3 in Charlotte, NC during the on-air telecast for the 2017 Novant Health Thanksgiving Day Parade.
The band’s founders (Jim Siani, Dave Piontek, Taylor Foster, and Dan Candia) have weathered the full gamut of hurdles as a startup since forming in 2011, ranging from exploding transmissions and ghosting vocalists to nearby celebratory gunfire landing Taylor in the hospital. When charismatic frontwoman Mikaela Salazar stepped into their lives in 2016, the roadblocks were removed, and everyone found something to be excited about.
The 4 founders found each other while playing in different bands that were a part of the Charlotte indie rock scene. The band members came to music naturally, as they all had musicians in their family: Dan came from a long line of international musicians, and his dad always played guitar when he was growing up. Dave started in music early, and in his early teens he became enamored of the Electric Bass and that became his instrument of choice. Jim knew by the age of 13 that he wanted to be a professional musician, inspired by acts like Aerosmith, Alice Cooper, and his favorite band Weezer. Taylor grew up watching his Dad play drums, so you could say they are in his family DNA. Mikaela grew up in a house that was never silent, and the desire to be involved in music was second nature. She was inspired to become a singer by strong female musical role models like Alanis Morissette and Gwen Stefani.
The band has 2 previous independent releases: The “Take Flight” album in 2012; and the “Risk and Reward” Ep in 2015.
In early 2017 FTA packed up and drove to Nashville, TN for a several-month-long recording binge with producer and friend Jon King (Augustana, Darling Parade). The result is their new album “Zodiac”, a powerful alt-rock collection that melds influences ranging from Incubus to Halsey.
The band has amassed a significant touring resume, having opened for The Pretty Reckless, Pop Evil, Adelitas Way, Flyleaf and more. They have also performed at major festivals including the Vans Warped Tour, SXSW, Florida Music Festival, Sonorous Music Festival, Dewey Beach Music Conference and Celebrate Fairfax. Their touring has garnered them endorsements from PRS and Reverend Guitars, among others.
FTA’s goal is to have their music reach as many people as possible around the world and for their music to inspire and encourage listeners. Becoming a household name in the modern rock community drives them forward, and “Zodiac” promises to help them achieve that goal. A second single and video will be released in early 2018.
1). The Culprit
2). Desperate Measures
3). Seven Tries
4). Better Off Alone
5). With You In Mind
6). Coast To Coast
7). Fate & Fiction
8). Nothing Changes
9). Heart Sails
10). Better Off Alone (Acoustic)
Upcoming Live dates (more dates being announced soon):
3/11/2018 The Evening Muse @ Charlotte, NC
3/29/2018 California University @ California, PA
4/07/2018 Cooper River Bridge Run Festival @ Mount Pleasant, SC
4/13/2018 Petras @ Charlotte, NC
4/28/2018 YoungUns @ Kings Mountain, NC
6/23/2018 Fatemaker Music Festival @ Halethorpe, MD