Bringing their unique brand of Britpop-inspired alternative rock to Canada for the first time, Australia’s Pretty City have are set to hit four top Canuck markets, topped off by a special Canadian Music Week Showcase in Toronto.
Starting at M Bar in Montreal on April 14, the band heads to Trash Night at Le Sous-Sol Du Cercle in Quebec City the following night before hitting The Rainbow Bistro in Ottawa on April 16. On April 20, they are the featured attraction for a special CMW showcase show at the Smiling Buddha in Toronto.
After only four years in existence, Pretty City, which is comprised of guitarist/backup vocalist Johnny Rock, singer/guitarist Hugh Matthews and drummer Drew Schapper, have become one of the top draws on the Melbourne circuit, cultivating an image as one of the hardest working bands ‘Down Under,’ for their relentless commitment to playing before as many people as possible, honing their already popular and energizing stage shows.
Colorize is indicative of a band that has elements of the lush melodies and arrangements of the best of the 1990s Britpop sound, with the raw energy and emotion of Grunge, but with a twist of modern psychedelia, topped off with some upbeat pop/punk sensibilities.
“Some of the first bands we kind of pointed to when we were starting to write our own material were UK bands like The Stone Roses, My Bloody Valentine and The Jesus and Mary Chain. As a guitar player and songwriter I really got into the Beatles as a kid, so I have more of a pop rock background whereas Hugh is really into lyrics and likes bands that are more introspective and thoughtful. Drew is kind of all over the place: one minute he’s listening to Queen and Van Halen and the next it’s opera,” Rock explained added that somehow, the sound that comes out when the three of them compose music sounds like bits of all of that, but maintains a consistent tone and vibe.
“I think we’re a combination of the Dandy Warhols and Tame Impala, or for North Americans I say we’re a mix of Dandy Warhols and the Smashing Pumpkins. I think Colorize fits perfectly in between those worlds.”
The band is also marking the first anniversary since the release of their first full-length album, Colorize, which was a significant radio hit Down Under.
Matthews and Rock were mainstays on the highly-competitive Melbourne scene before hooking up in 2013 as a new creative partnership. Seeking an excellent, versatile drummer, Schapper was brought in to add unique rhythmic component. As the primary songwriters Rock and Matthews not only have the experience to know what makes a good composition, but they also have a pretty ego-free collaborative spirit.
“It often starts with an idea that Hugh has had for a verse, a riff or chorus, but he leaves a lot of room for me and Drew to influence the final song. It’s a very open collaboration which is great because it gives us all an opportunity to collaborate and feel that we are fulfilling our own creative spirit. And frankly I like to have someone like Hugh to start the ball rolling; I have a hard time coming up with something out of thin air, but then I can come in and take that foundation and add my own unique take on the song,” he said.
“And Drew is actually a very funky drummer and likes a lot of genres so he really adds a different slant to stuff that might be a little more straightforward. So his contributions have been a big part in making our songs feel so unique.”
The result is an album in Colorize that sees a band hitting its artistic stride. It is a remarkable achievement in both songwriting and sonic excellence, as the album nimbly balances a very organic feel with a full and lush production.
For more information on Pretty City, visit www.prettycityband.net.
SHARE THIS POST: