Set to play in Red Deer on June 8th, Saskatoon’s Friends of Foes are also busy marking the release of their latest single Bare Boned.
The band is in Red Deer June 8th for a show at the West Park Community Centre at 8 p.m.
Meanwhile, the new single builds on the success of their early-2016 EP Faults and their late-2016 single 4Walls. Looking ahead, the band is also excited to be returning to the Canadian music scene with a new CD in late 2018.
Bare Boned, a gritty and instantly compelling tune that shows a vibrant progression in terms of lyrical development and a mesmerizing melodic sensibility, was recorded at Rainy Day Recording by guitarist/manager Matt Stinn.
Rounding out the band are Keegan Stretch and vocalist Danielle Huot.
Huot said that for the single, the band was looking for a bit of a harder-edged sensibility. Stinn agreed.
“We definitely, especially with this record, had a lot of points in the writing process where we took a step back and looked and made sure that what we were writing was something that would grab people and would be memorable and singable,” he explained, adding that a full-length CD has also been recorded and is set for release this fall.
“Bare Boned is a really good example of that with the repetition in the choruses. The melody stays engaging, but also has a kind of familiar flow from section to section.”
Formed in 2013, the band has toured the country on a consistent basis since early 2014.
Collaboratively, the members write all the original material that the band performs.
Looking back further, the single Winter was released in the fall of 2014 and prior to that, Chronophobic blasted off on Boxing Day in 2013.
The release of Winter saw Friends of Foes gaining ground on local and national community/college radio, as well as on the top of the indie charts for Canada at ReverbNation.
Chronophobic was also largely born from collaboration amongst the group on virtually every level. Songs tend to grow from sessions of just exploring various sounds, melodies and lyrical ideas.
For the newest project, Stinn said recording actually started late last year.
“I own a studio but still need to pay bills, so we were doing lots of late night sessions and just cramming in (the time) whenever we could,” he said. “Towards the end, it ended up being four or five days a week starting at 9 p.m. at night and going until midnight or 1 a.m. Really, it was just getting in the time whenever we could and then touring in between so it’s been a hectic six months for us. But the recording is done.
“Everything now is in the final stages of being put together.”
In the meantime, the fresh tunes are being featured in the band’s shows and the feedback has been tremendous.
“I would say that overwhelmingly, it’s really easy to see that our music is connecting with audiences as we play specific songs on the road,” Stinn explained. “They come out as being highlights of the night.”
The band collectively produced the project, but brought in S.J. Kardash for the mixing and Trevor Case (Kelly Clarkson, Missy Elliot) for the mastering.
“In the past we have worked with an outside producer and done all the work at their studio.”
This time, they opted for the self-production route, right from the songwriting to recording them to editing what would be on the record, he said, adding that both Kardash and Case contributed so much to the project from different standpoints.
Huot added that the production process of working with her bandmates proved quite smooth – in spite of the fact there are three strong artistic opinions that must meld creatively when all is said and done.
“Sometimes we would want three different things, so then it was, ‘What would the public like?’”
Stinn added that in some ways, collaborating so closely can slow down the decision-making process, but in the end, “They are better decisions.”
For both Huot and Stinn, the musician’s life is unquestionably the right path for both to be following.
“We really like just hanging out with each other on tour, making each other laugh. It’s very comfortable,” explained Huot.
“Also, playing the songs in front of audience and having that positive feedback afterwards makes it all worth it honestly.”
Stinn said meeting others on their travels is also one of the best aspects of touring. Lasting friendships are formed from community to community – in the best environments possible.
“We’ve been doing this now for about four years, so we have this network of friends across the country.”