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Wednesday, 29 July 2015 16:00

Bears in Hazenmore kicks off western Canada tour during EP release party at Lyric Theatre Aug. 6

Written by  Matthew Liebenberg
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The summer of 2015 is set to be a memorable time for the Swift Current alternative-ambient folk group Bears in Hazenmore.


The five-member ensemble will have a release party for their second EP at the Lyric Theatre Aug. 6, which will also be the kick-off for their western Canadian tour.
“It’s our first official tour, so we’re pretty excited about that,” lead vocalist Brady Frank said.
The tour during August will take them to 11 different cities, including Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver and Victoria.
Frank, who also plays guitar and keyboards, and four friends came together during the summer of 2013 to form the group. The other band members are Tanner Wilhelm Hale (drums, vocals), Dalton Lam (trumpet), Dana Rempel (bass, saxophone) and Darnell Stewart (guitar).
So far most of their performances have been at different venues in cities and towns across Saskatchewan.
“We’ve been playing mostly in Saskatchewan and then we did a showcase in Toronto at Canadian Music Week,” Frank said. “That was the only date not in Saskatchewan, but otherwise we’ve gotten some pretty good reception at different festivals in Saskatchewan.”
Their appearance at Canadian Music Week in May was a real highlight that provided them with a lot of exposure.
“It was pretty cool,” he said. “We got to do a whole bunch of sessions and we did a showcase. So industry people were able to come to our event and watch us play. … During the day we got to go to the conference, which was a bunch of sessions on how to promote yourself and on the business of being in a band.”
Since then they have continued to perform frequently at venues across Saskatchewan, including at the Cathedral Arts Festival in Regina on May 21 and at the All Folk’d Up Music Festival in Montmartre July 5.
“People were really into our music and came and talk to us afterwards,” he said. “We had some good support, so we got some new fans from that.”
This year is basically a continuation of their success as a group during 2014, when they released their self-titled debut EP with three tracks and raised their profile as contestants in the CBC Rock your Campus competition.
They ended in the Top 10 in the Rock your Campus contest and they also reached the Top 100 in the CBC Searchlight competition.
“We saw Facebook posts and stuff from people we’ve never met saying to go and vote for us,” Hale said. “That’s always encouraging.”
Their new EP, Airwaves, has six new songs. It will be released online Aug. 11. The title refers to the theme of being able to reach long distances through radio signals, which is reflected in some of the sounds on a few tracks.
“The main part of the music is still the same instruments but we added some special effects with morse code signals, dead air and switching between channels on a ham radio,” Frank said. “So those are just additional things that are on the first track and the last track that make a bit of a soundscape.”
They still sound similar as a band to when they recorded their previous EP, but the new songs also reflect their maturity as a group.
“We had time to tour, like play all these songs live, and we worked on it a lot more than the last EP we recorded when we were still pretty new as a band,” Hale said.
Frank noted the creative process for the new EP has been a more collaborative effort between band members.
“The main difference is that I wrote mostly the first three songs we released and then now these next six came from collaborating with each other more and letting the songs develop as a band,” he said. “So it’s not just one person writing it and more like five people writing music.”
Since recording the new EP they have already started working on a full-length album that will contain 10 to 12 tracks.
“It’s generally what we’ve been doing for the last month or so and we’re going to keep doing that for the next year,” he said.
According to Hale, the group is feeling pretty positive about their progress as a band, considering they are on the verge of releasing their second EP and starting their first significant tour.
“We haven’t been going downhill at all,” he said. “We’ve just kept growing and engaged people with our music and getting more and more fans. It’s been pretty exciting, seeing the support and how it has grown a lot. Even on our social networking and stuff like that people are paying attention to it.”
Bears in Hazenmore will start their August tour across western Canada on Aug. 1 with a performance at Saskatchewan Landing’s ampitheatre.
The opening act for their Airwaves EP release party and official tour kick-off at the Lyric Theatre in Swift Current on Aug. 6 will be the Regina group Nick Faye and the Deputies.
Doors will open at 7:30 p.m. and music starts at 8:30 p.m. The $15 tickets are available at Pharmasave or at the door.
For more information about Bears in Hazenmore, visit their Facebook  page or at: www.bearsinhazenmore.ca.

Read 4634 times Last modified on Friday, 31 July 2015 11:18