#NXNE: Audio Blood’s Annual Rooftop Rager


A party that Audioblood loves to host every year, the Rooftop Rager was bound to have tons of artists and surprises throughout the afternoon. Guests enjoyed drinks and music on a nice sunny day which made the event another hit from the planners. Acts such as Old Man Canyon and Slow Down Molasses had time to sit down with us and chat about NXNE and what we can expect from their new music going forward.

Slow Down Molasses

NXNE is a festival for up and coming artists, what have you guys done so far?
This is actually our second show, we played a show Thursday night and spent Friday night meeting people and we’re doing it again today and then we have 3 more shows this afternoon so it’s been a fun time. We’ve played at other festivals the past couple of years so this is exciting as well.

Do you think festivals come a long way in diversity and music genres?
We’ve only been doing them for a few years but it’s fantastic to see how they’ve grown. We’re from Saskatoon so we’re kinda far from the usual festivities that happen and play with a bunch of bands we dont usually see. It’s a fantastic opportunity to get out and see some other folks.

Can you tell us a bit about your latest record coming out?
We just finished our record hopefully come out next spring, some singles this fall. It takes what we’ve been doing the past few years. It’s very guitar and synth orientated. We’re very excited for it to come out and have our fans hear it.

Do you ever feel like you need to go The Xtra Mile for people understand where your music is coming from?
Definitely! For example, today we’re playing four shows. We love playing music and it really is hard to catch peoples attention since we’re not from here and we’re in a big city. When we’re able to tour we do as much as we can. We always say ‘let’s see how many shows we can play’ and if we get plenty of opportunities then we should go for it.

On stage, you guys did each played a bunch of instruments. Do you do that often? Why?
I think for us everybody likes playing and trying out new things and we didn’t know that up until a couple of years ago. We find it a bit boring just staying in one place so we like the fact that we can move around and try new things. That’s how we love to perform!

Check out a live performance of “Home” by the band below.

Old Man Canyon

It’s a very exciting week! Where have you played?
Yesterday we did an acoustic show at Trinity Bellwoods Park and it was really cool because it was the first acoustic thing we’ve done so far and it went very well. We also played the 159 Manning show in a living room and it was really cool to see 250 people crammed up where it was hot but it was awesome. We’re doing two more shows today and we’re excited. We aren’t doing the streetcar show but we really want to see one!

NXNE has become a very diverse festival and allowing different types of music to shine. What’s the best part about that? 
I think they’re amazing and I think there needs to be more of them because it brings everyone together and allows us to have incredible shows, play in bars… this is the kind of stuff I always want to be doing because I dont want to just be touring. I want to find a way to create that communal feeling that these festivals bring on the road consistently. I really want to see St Vincent and Reggie Watts before the festivals over if we have the chance to.

Have any festivals that you’ve attended in the past influenced your music?
I didn’t really go to many festivals growing up. I do recall going to a Vancouver Folk Festival but thats really the only one i’ve been to. We’re from Vancouver so theres not much to do. The music needs to be good and stage presence pull me into performances during festivals and I really enjoy people who go out and do that extra thing on stage and have a vision. The Beatles and Michael Jackson have been huge influences on us, they have amazing visions so I like to follow what they’ve done.

What’s on your iPod right now?
I’m listening to a lot of Father John Misty, I recently just got back into MGMT. I’ve been listening to their new and old stuff and it’s like hearing it for the first time. I dont really hear that much music anymore. When I have that desire to hear music I just make it… kinda weird but I like it. I still love listening to music, it’s just my time goes more into making it than listening to it.

How do you go The Xtra Mile?
I don’t think a lot bands dont try to connect with the people watching or try to create a customized experience. I dont create music just because they like it and drink or talk over it. I want to create experiences that people can share and learn from. Not just that I’m the entertainer and you’re the viewer, I hate that divide. I want people that are watching to feel that they are creators and they are artists. The new record is a lot more rhythm based, the way I write has changed completely and whole new songs are born. My interests on what I want to create on stage have also come into factor and the EP was written at a point where I wasn’t thinking of performing. When making this record, I’m trying to bring the audience into it as well.

“Phantoms and Friends” by Old Man Canyon below.

 [Interview done by Eva Beylin]

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