Who: Mother Mother
When: Sunday, Sept. 5
Where: Stawamus Stage, LIVE At Squamish festival
Cost: Weekend pass, $145.50, single day ticket, $79, kids under 12 free!
The winds of change seem to be blowing for B.C.'s indie sweethearts, Mother Mother.
With Ryan Guldemond on guitar and vocals, sister Molly Guldemond on vocals and keyboard, Jasmin Parkin on keyboard and vocals, Ali Siadat on drums, and Jeremy Page on bass, the five-piece band has taken an original approach to making modern pop/rock, fusing vocal harmonies with offbeat lyrics and quirky, powerful instrumentation.
Since independently releasing their first album in 2005 (which was later re-released in 2007 as Touch Up ) and dropping the follow-up effort, O My Heart in 2008, their sound has evolved in leaps and bounds. And while the differences are partially due to the fact that one was produced independently and the other, professionally, some major creative changes have also taken place.
Their debut album led with a twangy, country-inspired track, Dirty Town, while the title track on O My Heart is decidedly heavier, with a more melancholy feel.
"When we did Touch Up , we weren't really like a whole band. So inherently it was more acoustic and stripped down. And so over time, when we toured that material, the material itself sort of transformed into something heavier and more electric," Ryan said. "So it was a kind of natural progression for, I guess, the production value and the sonic aesthetic to change to something beefier, just because we're a whole band with drums and bass and more electric guitar. Just those elements alone can really turn something into rock, whereas before it was folk or whatever."
Where Touch Up features eclectic hints of various genres, on O My Heart the artists felt more of an affinity with songs like Polynesia and Oh Anna - darker tracks that transitioned easily into the rock vein. The end result is a remarkable fluidity and energy that carries forward from start to finish.
Produced by Howard Redekopp (of Tegan and Sara, The New Pornographers), and released on Last Gang Records, that sophomore album has garnered plenty of accolades: in 2008, iTunes Canada positioned O My Heart as the third Best Canadian Album of The Year and third best Indie Album of The Year.
But their success has led them into something of a strange transition period, moving away from their indie label and into the mainstream.
"I guess our goal is to break free from the indie band label and culture and I guess try and change the mainstream. I mean, that probably sounds a little lofty or something, but it would be really cool if wacky music could somehow insinuate itself into the mainstream.