Yumna Leghari


Everyone should listen to Viva Mars! Seeing them perform in Oshawa a couple years ago, I recall these boys setting up on stage, clad in dress shirts and ties. Looking quite proper, they began playing and surprised us all. Quirky, fun and intelligent, they were one of the few opening bands of which I watched the entire set; Viva Mars had caught my eye.

Lead guitarist Geoff Willingham of Rebel Emergency took the time to tell me about his love for his VOX AC30 and blue Celestion speakers! He was enthusiastic about the shows that he’s played with this amp, and how he’s never faced difficulties in sound. The capacity of sound that this amp holds is immense, and is worth the weight of the equipment (it’s quite heavy). Geoff expressed a strong distaste for modern models of Vox Amplifiers and says that he’s disappointed in their quality in comparison to the 1960’s model. Geoff is devoted to his amp and hopes to use it for as long as possible before it gives out!

Canadian musician KO opened up over the phone regarding the context of his music, his past, his journey to where he is now, and his plans for the future. He’s keeping busy, and sending out his message strong; hard drugs are detrimental, stick to the herb! His music deals with some very hard-pressed and personal issues that his fans can relate to. Here’s how it went.

I got the opportunity to chat with Jordan at the Mod Club in Toronto. The lights were dim and the venue was a quiet hush of preparation hours before the show. Jordan’s a well spoken guy who delves deeply into the semantics and process of music writing. With his strong interest in literature and the spoken word, La Dispute is unique in its lyrics and exposition of sound and voice. Reflecting the substance of the lyrics with instrumentals, and intertwining both to tell a passionate story with interchangeable narratives.

The Johnstones recently performed an energetic and crowd-pleasing show at the Green Bottle in Oshawa. Pulling people on stage, and giving them the mic allowed fans to belt out lyrics and enjoy the stage with these boys. I couldn’t stop dancing myself. Who knew trumpets could make my feet itch and want to dance? Sweaty from two-stepping, and overwhelmed by the July heat and intense show these boys just put on, I suggested that we do this interview outside.

Punk band Scream has been kicking around for almost 30 years. At the height of their career they were touring Europe and attracting thousands of fans. Now after a long absence, they’re back with a new EP entitled Hailux. This EP was produced by none other than former Scream drummer and current Foo Fighter frontman, Dave Grohl. Also, Scream guitarist and vocalist Franz Stahl temporarily replaced Foo Fighters guitarist Pat Smear for two years.

I caught up with Rebel Emergency vocalist Roddy Colmer for a quick chat on the phone, while they were in British Columbia for the first time. Roddy seemed pretty content with the Joint Venture tour, and the direction the band was heading in. Their new album Aphrodisiology consists of eleven tracks and comes out on June 24th.

Sitting down with Durham based Absence of Fear was the most refreshing conversation I’d had with a band in a while. Expecting a typical metal consensus from their interview, they surprised me by displaying a widely diverse viewpoint on music. There’s a great dynamic within their songs, the range and transition between the breakdowns and shreds are seemingly effortless, yet hold strength. Talking to these guys (and girl!) was entertaining to say the least.

Chilling in an empty warehouse, Pressure Makes Diamonds have found their abode for the summer. A few beers in, the groove has arrived and I am witnessing an effortless flow of music streaming from the instruments of these talented boys. Hailing from Whitby, this four-piece is influenced by the likes of Dave Grohl, Serj Tankian, Protest the Hero, and Coheed & Cambria. Quirky bass lines, accompanied with speedy shreds, a wide vocal range, intricate drum fills and an energetic stage presence…

Gareth Pearson, an incredibly talented acoustic guitarist from Wales performed a set at Trent University in Oshawa last week, and left everyone mind-blown. He does finger picking. By this, I mean he is bloody brilliant at finger picking. At 22, he has only been playing for eight years. Pearson is also completely self taught. He dropped out of school at sixteen to pursue his passion, and ended up playing shows with musicians he had idolized growing up.