I Am the Avalanche, 'Wolverines': Album Premiere

I Am The Avalanche

Ryan Jay

New York's I Am the Avalanche rumbles on with a new studio album, "Wolverines," out March 18. Produced by the band’s drummer Brett "The Ratt" Romnes, “Wolverines” is Avalanche’s third set and the most recent since 2011's “Avalanche United.” 

Having rocked onto the scene with their 2005 self-titled debut, "Avalanche United" proved to be the band’s “difficult” second album. The set was delayed by label issues, and was penned across a drawn-out six-year period. 

On their new set, the band -- comprising Vinnie Caruana (vocals), Brandon Swanson (guitar), John Oliva (bass) and Romnes – return to a deep well. They draw energy from those recording problems, and from Caruana’s health issues, moments of “rock bottom,” and a brutal act of God -- Hurricane Sandy.

“Wolverines” was cut at The Barber Shop Studios in Lake Hopatcong, a studio built into an old church from the 1800s and set right on the shore of Lake Hopatcong in New Jersey.

The recording process was a “really laid-back environment” with “positive vibes the entire way through,” Caruana tells Billboard. 

“We worked every day from around 11 a.m. until about 1 a.m. We basically had an array of snacks, coconut water, beer and whiskey around us to keep us in a creative, party zone.”

"Wolverines" is an album with claws. There are works that tackle the pain Hurricane Sandy dealt to Caruana’s hometown (“Where Were You?”), and the hurt done to Caruana when he suffered a life-affecting spine injury (“The Shape I’m In”.)

Indeed, all of the lyrics were written in Caruana’s bedroom in Long Beach, NY, looking out the window at the devastation from Hurricane Sandy. "We celebrated the conclusion of tracking by sprinting down the dock and jumping in the lake," he says.

The standout song on the album, notes Caruana, is "Two Runaways." "We see it as quite an achievement in terms of how we've progressed as a band."

And his favorite song from the album? That honor goes to "Anna Lee." It feels like a song "I always meant to write but didn't get around to it," he explains. "It already feels like an old friend."

"Wolverines" is out March 18 through I Surrender.

I Am the Avalanche's "Wolverines" Tour 2014

March
17 - Long Island, NY - Looney Tunes (in-store)
18 - Rochester, NY - Bug Jar
19 - Syracuse, NY - Lost Horizon 
20 - Pittsburgh, PA - Smiling Moose
21 - Detroit, MI - Shelter
22 - Chicago, IL - Subterranean
23 - Cleveland, OH - Now That's Class
25 - Poughkeepsie, NY - The Loft
26 - Boston, MA - Great Scott 
27 - Philadelphia, PA - Barbary
28 - New York, NY - Marlin Room at Webster Hall (w/ The Swellers, Turnover, Bellwether)
29 - Asbury Park, NJ - Asbury Lanes (w/ The Swellers)
                 
April
08 - Seattle, WA - Vera Project 
09 - Portland, OR - Star Theater
11 - San Francisco, CA - Thee Parkside
12 - Los Angeles, CA - The Roxy
13 - Anaheim, CA - Chain Reaction
15 - San Diego, CA - Che Café