Local musicians support each other in close-knit group
The best thing about the local music scene is the ease with which bands of different genres and subgenres effortlessly come together to form a close-knit community of music enthusiasts. For this, the best example is the countless number of shows that go on during the year to promote the release of local EPs and albums. On Sun. July 8, local alternative punk rock band, Thunderhawks, in collaboration with Credit Valley, a surf pop/indie rock quartet from Kitchener, did just that. With the efforts of the two bands, All Systems Go, an emerging pop-punk ensemble from Kitchener/ Cambridge, successfully fundraised for their upcoming EP, currently in the works.
Sometimes, credit’s gotta be given where credit is due, and right now in the local music scene, it needs to be given to bands with strong female personalities. Credit Valley, who formed in early 2010 after a local talent show commitment turned into passion for making music, is one of the more upbeat, fun bands in the area right now. They consider themselves “landlocked surf pop” – a description fitting to a tee.
“Our songs are peppy and generally quite positive,” lead vocalist Cacia Murphy, 17, said. “We’re always all smiles on stage and we’re fully aware that we are doing what we love to do. We’re happy people and it’s visible in our music.”
Indeed, Credit Valley offers a sigh of relief amongst the heavier metal and deathcore genres in the area, which is often “weary,” as Murphy pointed out. Faced with the recent departure of lead guitarist Andrew Prosser, who is pursuing post-secondary education instead, and drummer Nathan Cumber, who has left to pursue other projects, Credit Valley still remains positive.
“We have no intention of quitting,” Murphy said, stating her and rhythm guitarist, Callon Murphy, fully intend to play acoustically while they seek out a new guitarist and drummer. Catch their positive vibes this August in Cambridge at both Rock The Mill and A Day & Night in Hespeler Village.
Currently the strongest they have ever been, Thunderhawks began their “alternative punk rock [with] jazzy hooks” sound with the common goal of starting a band, vocalist Jeff Richards said. Their latest single, “Sew,” is what Richards considers the exact step they needed to take to take the band to the next level in their progress.
In joint efforts with original Thunderhawks member, guitarist Mitchell Dunn, Richards recruited second guitarist Rory Gaskill and Chris Payne, whom he considers very talented. “We are contributing something much different sound-wise to the [local] scene than other types of bands our style,” Richards said. “Every record, we try to grow and bring something new to the table. Yeah, we could write the same record over and over again, but we don’t want to be forgotten.”
Their Facebook page is proof, with “Likes” far superseding that of many other local talents. However, Richards worries about Kitchener’s local scene. “It’s becoming more of a hassle to get shows, get paid, get promoters,” he said, admitting Toronto is where he sees most of the action, concerned that the Kitchener scene, in the next five year, will be “dead.”
Combining more alternative rock influences into their style, Thunderhawks are currently experiencing musical metamorphosis. “Our new songs are nothing like the other ones. We are so proud of the new stuff coming out,” Richards said. “It’s not your original Thunderhawks. We like to think we have grown musically.”
For more Thunderhawks, keep a close eye on their Facebook page and keep your ears open to the buzz about their upcoming EP at the end of this summer. I hear it’s killer.