Bravestation Speak Their Minds
Every now and then you hear something that hits you. A fan of puns could even say that it strikes a chord…
If i’m completely honest I am not entirely sure what it is about Bravestation that gets me all a flutter. It could be that I have a love for their clever rounds. OR it could just be that the song writing and ability to weave uplifting and mysterious melodies together like it aint no issue has got me completely and utterly hooked. Probably the latter.
It’s a tall order to get each and every song on an EP to reach a crescendo of its own and not feel disjointed, The 2010 EP has this down to a Tee. If I absolutely had to then comparisons can be made to Local Natives and other musicians with this new fangled worldly folk. This slower, meaningful sphere of indie-ness is on the up. In the swirl we can only hope that acts such as Bravestation reach a larger audience, I cannot recommend anything else i’ve heard this year more. Oh, their debut is also free on their bandcamp. Just thought you might like to know… (have a look HERE)
I got in touch with the guys over in Canada and just shot them some questions, here’s what they are all about.
It’s kind of become a tradition unto itself but can you just shout out your names and who plays what?
Devin (vocals | bass), Jeremy (drums), Andrew (keyboards & percussion), Derek (guitar & vocals)
So your name is Bravestation, is their any particular story behind that? It kinda reminds me of Babestation but let’s not go there…
Haha our UK manager Nick also alluded to that softcore show over there *shakes head. Our name is inspired by Aldous Huxley’s novel ‘Brave New World’, and an essay by Robert J. Hastings entitled ‘The Station’. There’s a great line in it that states: “Regret and fear are twin thieves who would rob us of today.”
I guess you could say it’s almost the end of the ‘generic’ questions but how did you guys form? I really couldn’t find much through the web. And i did look, alot.
Devin, Jeremy and I (Derek) moved from our hometown to Toronto where we met Andrew while I was studying recording/producing/engineering @ a school for the arts. Originally, Andrew was just engineering the demo that we were going to use to find another member once it was completed – it turns out he was right there all along!
You’ve just released your first EP ‘The 2010 EP’, is this the first between you guys as a band already or just the first recorded stuff?
We actually recorded a seven song demo back in 2009 during the aforementioned studio sessions with Andrew. Due to time constraints and the fact that we were still trying to find our sound, we’ve decided to keep it low key as we don’t feel as though it captured the essence of what we’re about as a band. You can still hear ‘As We Rest’ & ‘Everglades’ on our MySpace, though.
I’m not going to beat around the bush, your EP is absolutely the best thing i’ve heard this year. Is there more in the offing? An album? Please?
Wow, thank you so much; 2010 has been an epic year for new releases so we really appreciate that you feel that way about our record.
We’ve actually just started demoing a handful of new tracks, which we’ll hopefully be releasing sometime in (early) 2011.
The music you make seems very cared for, how are rehearsals for you guys? Is it a set thing or is there an air of spontaneity to it?
The reason we opted to release a shorter collection of songs rather than a full-length is because we wanted to ensure that every song had a distinct personally, was expressive, and fulfilled what we perceived to be its full creative potential. Song-writing for us is a very open and collaborative process; it helps having input and vision from several members rather than one primary song-writer when sculpting ideas.
That said, we deliberately experimented a ton on this record and tried to push our boundaries as much as possible. We also ended up keeping quite a few spontaneously recorded ‘rough’ parts that we had no intention of originally keeping.
When you recorded your EP how long was the process? Can you quickly describe your music making process?
We started simultaneously rehearsing, writing and recording the album in January 2010 with a completion date in June. It was a 6 month process that took place @ Canterbury Studios in Toronto where Andrew is currently working. Most of the sessions went late into the night after regular work hours. We’d come up with our own ideas – be it riffs, beats, or chord progressions – outside of studio time, and share, arrange and record them during these late night sessions.
So unfortunately given that I live in Brighton and you in Toronto there is little way i’m seeing you anytime soon. Have you been playing a lot locally?
We’re trying to play as much as possible locally. We have plans to keep playing in and around Eastern Ontario for the foreseeable future. Although it’s proving to be exceedingly challenging without our own tour van and having to borrow vehicles from our families, use Craigslist ridshares, rent discount cars via the internet, and pay for van cabs to get ourselves and our gear to shows 😐
How is the scene in Toronto?
Toronto is great, there are a lot of really cool bands/venues/shows/festivals in and around the city. Although I’m sure it doesn’t hold a candle to what I’m told is one of the best scenes in the UK 😉 Some of my favorite independent locals are Young Empires, Styrofoam Ones, Dora Alexander, Freedom or Death and Nightbox – all great bands worth checking out.
Also, on the off chance, could you be making a trip to England soon?
That’s definitely one of our long-term goals that we’ve discussed with Nick. However, I’m sure you can appreciate how much time, money and planning that will take *fingers crossed*
Your song Clocks & Spears is no doubt a great one. After pondering about it for a while, what exactly is it all about?
Thank you, but If we told you, we’d have to spear you 😉 The imagination’s a beautiful thing, isn’t it!
The songs on your EP are originals, have you got any covers under your belts?
We’ve flirted with a few cover ideas in the past (The Grass Roots’ “Midnight Confessions’ http://bit.ly/96xLIR & Paul Revere and the Raiders’ ‘Kicks’ http://bit.ly/ccEIyJ), however, right now we want to remain focused on creating, rehearsing and writing our own music; it’ll be a while before we have the luxury of mimicking another bands’ material to the extent that it won’t suck.
Twitter of Facebook?
They’re both so crucial for networking, acquiring info and building community – I often use them in tandem. If you asked me this a year ago I would have undoubtedly said Facebook (which is still better for organizing events and posting visual content), but I’ll go with Twitter as it seems to be the preferred hangout for industry folk and is much more effective for keeping up-to-date with current music-related happenings.
Lastly but not leastly, who would you credit as your influences?
Wolf Parade, Foals, Tears for Fears, Crystal Castles, Yeasayer, Joy Division, Interpol, The Killers, we could go on all day…
Thanks guys and all the best, hope to see you soon
As said before, Bravestations debut EP is up for free download on their Bandcamp. Do yourself a service and head on over there to sample what they’ve got on offer.
Here’s a teaser for those unsure if the EP is worth the download. Although it is. It definitely is.