Wild Rivers brings folk to M-Shop

Tana Gam-Ad

Folk band, Wild Rivers, the “finest purveyors of ‘Folk ‘n Roll and Country Soul” are making a stop at The Maintenance Shop in the second month of their tour.

With over 30 million streams on their Spotify and around 100 performances under their belt, Wild Rivers is quickly rising in the ranks of music. Their show opens 8 p.m. Wednesday and will feature fellow folk-rock band, Whitacre.

Wild Rivers was the brainchild of main vocals, Khalid Yassein and Devan Glover, who met in Kingston, Ontario, back in 2012. The duo released their debut EP, “This Town,” in 2015 but soon expanded and added two more members to form Wild Rivers. The new additions to the band — natives to Oakville, Ontario — are Andrew Oliver on guitar and bass and Ben Labenski, better known as Laferriere, on drums who joined in 2016. The group is currently based in Toronto.

Yassein and Glover started with “This Town” before the quartet was formed and garnered attention nationwide and enjoyed national radio airplay which led to the two being voted Toronto’s Best New Artist in the 2015 CBC Searchlight contest. A year later, all four members released their self-titled debut album April 16, 2016 which received a similar response in both the U.S. and in Canada pulling in 27 million streams on Spotify alone.

The band released their second EP in late June of this year, entitled “Eighty-Eight.” They are currently joining The Paper Kites on their North American tour who all members of the band have cited as “one of our biggest inspirations” on Twitter.

“Eighty-Eight” was recorded in both Ontario and Nashville, inspired by iconic pop artists of the 1970s, from Fleetwood Mac to James Taylor to Neil Young. The EP is a mix of songs that come across as acoustically vulnerable and more upbeat tracks feature a more pop-y vibe. Through the music in this EP, they successfully highlight the band’s reputation that “makes a powerful connection with listeners.”

Singers Yassein and Glover work off of each other’s voices to tell a story through their songs. Their vocals vary with each song, but they always find a way to harmonize through taking opposite sides and switching between docile and more forward singing.

The balance is also found between the singers and the rest of the band, as the layered instrumentals match the vocals. Together, the foursome transports listeners to another place in time through dazzling and well textured harmonies and tightly-written, wistful lyrics that elicit a number of emotions from the listener.

Tickets for the Wild Rivers concert are $10 for Iowa State students and $12 for the public with a $2 increase on the day of the show. Tickets can be purchased at the M-Shop box office, online via Midwestix.com or through the band’s website.