Iconic Canadian hip-hop group Swollen Members will be back in Red Deer this month promoting the release of their new album, Brand New Day.
Kiley ‘Prevail’ Hendriks, Shane ‘Madchild’ Bunting and Robin ‘Rob the Viking’ Hooper will be hitting Wild Bill’s Sports Bar on June 18th.
“Everyone is in a place where we’re celebrating each other’s individuality which is really amazing, and I think that it’s brought some strength back to the group,” says Prevail, explaining the direction of the album.
“We’re really letting our voices speak for themselves, and re-establishing the strength of the Swollen Members sound.”
Prevail says that the meaning behind Brand New Day is that the group, “Have all hit a point of realizing that we’ve had an amazing career, with an amazingly receptive fan base that has allowed us to make music that celebrates individuality.”
Swollen Members have had a little bit of a rocky recent history, with rapper Madchild battling and eventually overcoming some trouble with addiction. Prevail said in an interview that he “Takes his hat off to Madchild” due to the new focus that pushing through the experience brought to the group.
“Obviously, it had an effect on the group as well but I think once we were able to move past that, we said, let’s use that strength. Let’s use that experience we all went through and push forward with it. That’s really where Brand New Day came from,” says Prevail.
The new album’s sound is described by Prevail as a very aggressive sounding album, with “Dark, driving, challenging beats.” The sound is familiar to Swollen Members fans, but also has “Sprinkles of more light-hearted, easily approachable music.”
This is the first Swollen Members album that features no collaborations with other artists. Producer Rob the Viking, Madchild and Prevail worked hard to develop a sound entirely unique to them.
Prevail says that he feels Madchild, himself and Rob the Viking had a chance to have dialogue not only amongst themselves, but their fans as well.
“They know what we’ve been through, and they know that we’ve come out on the other side better and stronger. This is, I feel an album where we had an opportunity to talk more about what the future looks like, as opposed to what the past felt like.”
Prevail says that the group really appreciates the support given in their home country of Canada. He adds that the group proudly shares their Canadian pride while on tour, and that the support in Canada serves as a reminder and momentum for the accomplishments of the group.
“I think part of (continuing to make music) is that our idea of success is continuity, and being able to keep it growing. And music is endless – the combinations, thought process, creativity – the only thing that can stop you is your own inhibition and we’re the kind of people where we have individual goals and goals as a group that we strive for.”
Prevail laughs as he recalls a special moment on a recent leg of their tour into Scottsdale, Arizona.
“How does a nine-year old kid know about Swollen Members in Scottsdale, Arizona? I don’t know, but he was at the show with his parents and he was up front wearing a Swollen Members skull bandana, rocking out having a blast. I don’t know what’s up there, but it was awesome. That’s one of the things that keeps us going.”
Tickets to the June 18th show are available on Ticketmaster.