Oceanic, welkin, Whitfield
Oceanic began as a collaboration between Patrick Gross and Cody Beales,...
Sat. November 13th 2004
Voda (No Minors)
7:00pm - 4:00pm
Oceanic began as a collaboration between Patrick Gross and Cody Beales, who together had a vision for a band that would explore new sounds and beats. The return of Raphaël Perdriau to Vancouver in late 2001 was the spark needed to begin the creative journey. With the right members in place, they have never looked back.
Oceanic draw their inspiration from the electronic and groove based music worlds to shape an aural universe of their own. Their fusion of ambient guitars, samples and keyboard textures capture the mind while relentless rhythms move the body. Combine this with strong vocals and smart songwriting and you begin to understand what Oceanic are all about.
As the core of Oceanic, the three have moved forward, always evolving the live sound with dynamic setlists and segments of improvisation and recently committing to tape the first studio offering – the Departures EP. A 4 song collection released in July 2004, the recording offers a strong representation of a group with a great live show and a confident grip on their potential in the studio. Oceanic can be found performing regularly in diverse venues throughout Vancouver.
Since 2001, the haunting vocals and sonic atmospheric art rock of Vancouver based welkin have proven them worthy of attention. welkin is the brainchild of singer, songwriter Geoff Birch who also plays guitar and piano and produced the bands debut album No Ordinary Elephant. The multitalented Birch put together Welkin after years of performing in various incarnations ranging from a hard rocking band a la I Mother Earth to half of a duo in homage to Simon and Garfunkel. Welkin is rounded out by Mark Christianson on bass, Darren Birch on drums and Daniel Sturgeon on keys/organ. No Ordinary Elephant covers wide musical terrain from the intricate "A Dream" and the prophetic "Photograph" to the dusty sounds of "Montana" and "Winter Hills". Birch composed each song on the album with a breadth and depth of words and music rarely achieved on an independent release. The album was recorded on analogue tape at Sapphire Sound in November of 2001 and is "Equal parts smouldering country-noir and prog-leaning soft rock, the 10 tracks have and expansive shimmering beauty, making them perfect for midnight stargazing, backwoods campfires, and clamping on the headphones in the wee hours." – Mike Usinger, Georgia Straight 2003. Birch’s stunning vocal capacity engages the listener with a vibrato so palpable and evocative that it will ensure heavy rotation of No Ordinary Elephant within your record collection over some time. The word welkin is a poetic/literary reference meaning "the vault of the sky, the firmament or the heavens". Most appropriate for this stellar band. The name of the album and the single "No Ordinary Elephant" was inspired by a day when members of Welkin carried the remains of an African Elephant leg deep into the coastal mountains to give it a proper ceremonial burial. "One by one in eulogies, cold in dirt this dead machine, teeming with sorrow". As recommended by Birch for best results; listen to the album after lugging your speakers out into your backyard and aiming them at the sky. Turn stereo to full volume and lay flat on your back. Gaze up into the welkin and let the music do the rest. For best indoor results, listen to the album on headphones. Envision the welkin and follow previous instructions. Welkin has immediate plans to promote their new album throughout Canada. Make sure to catch them on tour in 2004 for an unforgettable musical epiphany.
Whitfield has been together for over two years. Lead singer, Jobie Mallett, who is originally from the UK, awakened a few of his good mates (originally Sam Bastedo on drums, and Chris Lemky on bass) to the melodic sounds and beauty of the Brit Rock music scene. With a change of bass players, Josh McCulloch joined the band, and they shortly afterwards formed the band known as Whitfield. Quoted by the Kamloops Omega, "The Best Band You've Never Heard" and the winners of the recent Kamloops Battle of the Bands, this intense and energetic three-piece holds their own against any band or style, and are forging their way forward bringing a new sound that pulls on your emotions and takes you on a ride to a deeper, sweeter place.
Their influences are mostly from the other side of the pond (the UK), some of which are The Verve, Oasis, Coldplay, the Beatles, and Radiohead. These are just a sample of the few bands that have had an influence on Whitfield's own sound, but it is a sound very much original to the band as well. Whitfield has recently finished their first full-length album, titled Kaleidoscope Ride.