Welcome to the Week of Ontario Bands! A brainchild of BoppinsBlog, Ontario Bands Week will focus on favourites from our home province of Ontario Canada. Participating sites include Keeps Me Alive, Stick It In Your Ear, and 1001 Albums in 10 Years. Let’s give’r!
There has been a wave of exciting new bands from Ontario Canada in the last several years. The Arkells (Hamilton), July Talk (Toronto), The Standstills (Oshawa), Monster Truck (Hamilton) and The Glorious Sons (Kingston) have been leading the charge on radio. Each band is unique and unlike the others. It is hard to pick a favourite, but The Glorious Sons truly are something special. Their debut EP showcased secret weapon, lead singer Brett Emmons. Rarely do you come across such a genuinely soulful rock singer from the snowy climbs of Ontario. Instead Emmons sounds like he probably hailed from Mississippi or Louisiana. He has enviable range and power, all substance with plenty of style.
The Glorious Sons’ debut EP, Shapeless Art, was mixed by fellow countryman Gordie Johnson (Big Sugar, Grady)*. Johnson has a blues pedigree and the sheen he adds to the sonics is the cherry on top of some excellent songs. The first two tracks are now rock radio staples: “White Noise” and “Mama”. These are different mixes than the ones released on debut LP The Union. The familiar crashing and bashing of “White Noise” is welcome any time any day. You can’t help but feel recharged after one listen. “Mama” sounds like the deep south in the middle of summer. It is definitely meant for good times.
The other three songs are unique to the EP. Title track “Shapeless Art” sprints along with gently picked clean guitars instead of crunchy chords. It has power, drama and catchy “whoo hoo hoo” backing vocals. “Ruby” on the other hand builds slowly from a somber piano base. By the end it’s an absolute party. You can picture the crowd jumping up and down singing along, until it feedbacks to an ending. The centerpiece though is “Baby”, a re-recording of an old music video they made independently. Where the music video was vocalized by Jay Emmons, Brett sings it with him on the EP version. It finally sounds fully realized, probably recorded, full power extracted and concentrated. With “Baby” now sounding armed and ready to go, the Shapeless Art EP is complete and one of the most exciting releases of its kind in many moons.
“Baby” original music video version
Whether you check out this fabulous EP or The Union LP, or their brand new single “Kill the Lights”, do what you have to do to get this band in your ears. You won’t mind if they move in right to your brain, because listening to the Glorious Sons is an absolute pleasure. We look forward to their next album due some time in 2017. If the pattern holds true, they will be hitting the radio again with another steady stream of quality singles. May as well get ready for stocking up this winter on old Glorious Sons. Shapeless Art would be a recommended first purchase.
*Johnson has lived in Windsor Ontario, as well as Alberta, Winnipeg and Texas.
CHECK OUT THE GLORIOUS SONS’ NEW SINGLE, “KILL THE LIGHTS”!