Words: Kelly Munro
Wonderkids Hyena have seemingly sprung from nowhere (well, Telford. It's the same believe me). In the last six months the quartet have began slowly nudging the UK's ears. Instantly attracting a superstar manager - namely Mark Beaumont from NME, no less - and hooking up with super producer Tom Dalgety (Royal Blood, Killing Joke) for their debut recordings, the band seem to be making all the right moves, and are practically a fully-formed monster of a band just waiting to happen.
Look a little deeper, however, and it transpires that Hyena were once a different kind of animal - a bird; a Weatherbird, in fact, whom Little Indie caught live back early last year (see here). Vocalist Jacob Ball, in a recent interview commented that, "we'd been Weatherbird since we were 13 so the name had a lot of baggage which we were tired of, and we thought it sounded more like a pop-rock band than what we do."
But what about the songs you may ask? Well, be prepared to be (metaphorically) punched in the face. Live, the band sound like they have been touring for years and the tracks released so far - including debut single 'Mental Home' which came out in March - sound like the bastard offspring of Queens Of The Stone Age and Arctic Monkeys (and have been compared to the likes of Drenge and Darlia). But not the ugly siblings, more like the smart-arse good-looking ones. The ones that are good at everything. You know, the ones you hate but are secretly jealous of? Yeah, those ones.
Already playing a slew of festivals over the summer (Download being the most recent) and being the tender age of 20 years old the band are on the right track to something huge.
As far as I can work out the last big band to come from Telford was T'Pau. China in their hands? Nah, but definitely the crowd.
Hyena play London's Power Lunches on July 2 with Broken Hands and Dolls.
Hyena are: Jacob Ball (vocals/guitar), Josh Taylor (bass), Dom Farley (guitar), Reuben Gwilliam (drums).