High energy, a half-dozen instruments and a handful of hip 20-something-year-olds comprise Philly folk rockers The Hundred Acre Woods.
The Hundred Acre Woods hails from Philadelphia and Chester County, with members who also attend Temple and Drexel University. Guitarist and vocalist Zack Reinhardt describes his band’s music as “rowdy folk,” but also admitted that it is difficult to categorize Its sound is somewhere between bands like Andrew Jackson Jihad, Mumford & Sons, Cassino and Okkervil River. Two months ago, The Hundred Acre Woods opened for Ra Ra Riot at a free show at Bryn Mawr College.
Joining Reinhardt in The Hundred Acre Woods is Will Davis, Brandon Harrison, Pat Loundas and Winthrop Stevens. The members all play various instruments including guitar, banjo, mandolin, field organ, bass and drums. The members trade off vocal duties as well. On Nov. 20 they will be playing a show with Paul Baribeau, John Crodian and Adult Braces at Pi Lam, 3914 Spruce St. The band’s full-length debut will be released in 2013.
The Temple News: How long have you been a band?
Zack Reinhardt: Since late 2009. We recorded our first EP in 2010.
TTN: How would you describe your sound?
ZR: It’s hard to describe. I say rowdy folk. The energy of punk and the wisdom of folk.
Pat Loundas: Well this record is going to be louder and it’s just definitely shaped our sound into more of a punk direction than a folk direction.
ZR: Taking the step to being in Philadelphia, having the chance to be a part of the community as far as basement shows go has really helped us, and like [Loundas] said it’s rubbing off on our sound when we’re playing in the hottest room ever.
PL: It’s definitely a unique thing. I always meet people from really far away, other cities. All these homes with big unfinished basement that no one cares if you break bottles or vomit in and it’s cool. Places like Maggot House were crucial for us when we were starting out. My favorite part of our music is playing in a sweaty, drunk basement.
TTN: What do you like about the Philadelphia music scene?
PL: Everyone is so nice.
Winthrop Stevens: The new record, we’re trying to bring some of the intensity of our live show to it. I wouldn’t call us, like, a punk band. We just try to get that energy.
TTN: What kind of music influences your sound?
ZR: When we first started this band we just tried to be the Avett Brothers.
WS: A lot of the music I listen to is hardcore and black metal but the kind of stuff we play is a lot different.
PL: I’ve been listening to a lot of Into It. Over It.
ZR: Of my favorite bands, nothing makes sense with our music.
TTN: How is the record? How’s it shaping up?
PL: We’re focusing on finishing it. We’re trying to finish it and not play so many shows right now and it kind of sucks. I wish we could play more shows but we’re a little spread out right now.
ZR: We’re going to record more than we need and hopefully pick 10 songs. At this point it’s going to be a full length.
TTN: How does the writing and recording process move along?
PL: We recorded a few songs at a cabin in the Poconos, near Lake Wallenpaupack in the last of the summer. We might go back there.
WS: It was incredible. It was really an interesting experience just in terms of getting away from technology and having very limited technology and no Internet. It was cool to just go to a secluded area and focus on the music.
ZR: Once we recorded in a closet made of cedar wood big enough for two people and an amp. It made it feel really unique.
PL: [Reinhardt] has a lot of cool rooms in his house to record. We’re trying to expand and experiment and see what comes out. Our favorite part is really that live aspect and we want to get that down.
ZR: We’ve been getting a lot of momentum. We’re excited.
Jacob Harrington can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.