East meets West

An eager St. John’s musician returns home on tour with his group on the rise, Kootenay “Stoke Folk” band Shred Kelly.

It’s been two years since Fernie, B.C.-based band Shred Kelly has been to St. John’s, and in a recent phone interview, drummer Ian Page Shiner could hardly hide his excitement to return home.

“We’ve been touring hard for two years trying to get a bit of an audience. We have a pretty good following out west, and we’re looking forward to visiting St. John’s. [It] has a different vibe than the rest of Canada,” he said. “You can tell that the audience enjoys the music and they really get into it.”

With a plethora of sounds and their own personal genre, Shred Kelly is shredding up stages and capturing the attention of music lovers as the band tours across the country.

Ian Page Shiner. Photo courtesy shredkelly.com
Ian Page Shiner. Photo courtesy shredkelly.com

“People love to dance at our shows; they get very stoked and excited about the upbeat music,” Shiner explained. He continued to define the band’s genre, which has been tossed around a lot in recent years. The band has labelled their music as “Stoke Folk”, a combination of rock, pop, and folk.

As Shiner keeps rhythm, bassist Jordan Vlasschaert and guitarist Steve Polit generate an energy on par with most rock bands. Meanwhile, Sage McBride’s vocals and harmonic synth echo from beneath Tim Newton’s fierce voice and rapid banjo, creating a healthy pop-folk atmosphere.

After being awarded 2012 ‘Artist of the Year’ at the Kooteney Music Awards, releasing a video for their song The Bear, and currently on tour in support of their newest album, In the Hills, Shred Kelly has been generating a lot of attention.

The band is also working toward expanding its fan base by performing at well known festivals. In early June they played Toronto’s renowned North by Northeast, and will soon play the 2013 Ottawa Folk Festival, sharing the bill with artists like Neil Young, The Avett Brothers, and The Sheepdogs.

“We are jumping all over the place,” Shiner said. “We are back out west for a hand full of shows, then we fly back to Toronto for a show, then we’re driving straight east. The band has been non-stop, and the St. John’s portion of their tour is bound to be a busy one.

They will be starting off with Folk Night at The Ship on Wednesday (July 3), followed with two sets at The Levee on Thursday (July 4), with local acts The Josh Bourden trio, The Rogues, and Texas Chainsaw. On Friday (July 5) the band will play The Rock House with The Idlers, before clueing up its visit on Saturday (July 6) back at The Ship.

Keep your ears open for Shred Kelly’s return to the island. If their live stage presence is anything like to the music on their latest album, their visit will be one you’ll want to take advantage of.

Watch the video for The Bear

For more information on Shred Kelly, visit the band’s website.

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