The Black Fever are a three piece Post-Punk band from Toronto. The group consists of Pat Bramm on bass, Dan Purpura on percussions, and Shoe on guitar and vocals. The trio will be playing the Horseshoe Tavern on January 31, and have recently been selected to play as part of Canada Music Week here in Toronto. I recently had the chance to catch up with The Black Fever gang to discuss their past accomplishments as well as their plans for the future.
How did you guys meet/How did the band form?
“The band formed in 2009. Two of us (Pat and Shoe) were in a band together before called The Daybreak, but that band had broken up in 2006. Dan had been in a band called Fire Hydrant, but they broke up. We had all known each other, so we decided to start playing music together.”
As a group from Toronto you’ve had the opportunity to play at venues all over the city. What do you think of our music scene?
“Toronto has a very eclectic scene. We often play with bands that are quite different stylistically from us. It’s great to have such variety, but sometimes, it would be nice if there was a bit more coherence amongst Toronto bands. It can be challenging to play on a bill with a roots rock band, when you know their fans may not necessarily like you, and vice versa.”
You’ve played quite a few large shows in the last couple of years including NXNE. You were also one of the bands recently announced to be playing Canadian Music Week this year in Toronto. How does it feel to be able to play at some of Canada’s largest music festivals?
“It’s a great honor to have played NXNE and CMW last year, and to be playing CMW again. Hopefully it helps us to make new fans and expose our music to others. And since we’re all fans of live music, it’s a great opportunity to check out other bands from Toronto and beyond. For example, we really enjoyed the CMW performances from Diiv and Cloud Nothings. “
In the past three years you have released two albums independently. Have you ever considered signing with a label for any future projects? Or do you prefer the do-it-yourself hands on approach?
“It would be ideal to work with a label! It’s a lot of work to put out albums by yourself, and there is a lot of music being released all of the time. It would be nice to have someone in our corner to help increase the exposure of our music.”
You r sound has noticeably evolved from Romanticism to Revisionist. Romanticism is has more of a popesq sound to it whereas Revisionist feels more clean and honed. Like you’ve found a sound that you really like and that really fits with your visions of where you want to take your music. It has a much more Post-Punk vibe to it. Reminding me of bands like Muse, The Walkmen, and The Smiths. What other bands do you derive inspiration from?
“As one can imagine, we all have quite different musical inspiration. Pat’s bass work is inspired by The Beatles, Fleetwood Mac, and Interpol. For Revisionist, Dan was inspired by the Rural Alberta Advantage. Shoe is a British music aficionado, ranging from The Beatles to The Maccabees. For Revisionist, he took a lot of inspiration from Joy Division, The Chameleons, and Interpol. It’s safe to say we’re all Interpol fans.”
When recording Revisionist was it your intentions to try and take your sound in a different direction, away from the pop sound (classic meaning of the term) and towards that darker grittier post-punk sound? Or was it something that just naturally evolved in the process?
“It was definitely intentional to make Revisionist sound the way it did. For the first album, that album was influenced by a lot of British bands (Oasis, The Verve, The Stone Roses). For the second album, we wanted a more North American/British post-punk sound, with more moody instrumentation and more of an austere atmosphere. Our new batch of songs that we’re developing move even further in this direction.”
What is the group’s creative process like when composing new music?
“Typically Shoe records a rough demo with the chord progression, vocals, and song structure generally mapped out. Then we all try and land on the individual instrument arrangements, and other arrangements (intros, conclusions, etc.) as needs be.”
Your music has received a fair amount of critical acclaim, including being featured in Now Magazine. How does it feel to know that your music is being heard and perceived so widely and positively?
“It’s nice to get good reviews when they come. We’ve also gotten some bad reviews from time to time, so we try and take it all with a grain of salt. It all goes with trying to expose your music to people; some like it, others don’t.”
You just released your second album last year. Are there any plans floating around to release another album in the near future?
“It would be great to put out another album, but the timing isn`t clear yet. We`ve already finished three songs that we`ve started to play live. It`s possible that we`d be ready to record by the end of the year, but there`s no firm date.”
If you would like to be added to the guest list for The Black Fever show on January 31st at The Horseshoe Tavern email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com with your first and last name