Holler, Wild Rose! on Returning to Canada, and the U.S. Recession

This will be Holler, Wild Rose's! third trip to Canada. Playing in Ottawa on March 12th, they will hit Montreal before arriving at the Boat on March 15th in Toronto. According to the band's lead vocalist, John Mosloskie, they will be catching the "after party of Canadian Music Week," before crossing the border to finish up their tour.

I talked to John briefly last week to discuss the group's future and, amongst other things, how the recession is affecting Holler, Wild Rose!.

At the risk of repeating the opinion of fellow critics, Holler, Wild Rose does have some of the same qualities that you would find in a band like Broken Social Scene. An ambient rock sound with no controlled formula to their songs (verse, chorus, verse, chorus, bridge, chorus, end), and they are not afraid to have an eleven minute song on their record. They fit well in the Toronto indie scene and I'm expecting that they'll be well received on Sunday. I asked John what the music scene in New Jersey was like.

"New Jersey is kind of weird in a sense. We don't really have many places to play unless you count more of the high school scene - actually that's a pretty cool, thriving scene. Kids that are fourteen or fifteen are doing some awesome indie stuff, mixing electronic with it, and then doing visuals with it as well. There really aren't that many clubs in Jersey. If you're a band and you're playing 21 and over shows, then you gotta go to New York."

Or to Toronto. It's actually due to the positive response of their last two visits that they're returning to Canada.

"I can't believe it's been almost two years since we've been up there... but this time it's cool because we got a lot of great feedback from those shows and we know that a lot of people that came out last time we played will be coming out to these shows [Ottawa, Montreal, Toronto]. So, we're really excited to come up there."

With the recession in the media so often, it often has me wondering if it's started to have an effect on the music industry and or on the day-to-day lives of working musicians.

"Oh yeah, oh yeah. For instance, one of the guys is losing his job; he got laid off. Our drummer had to start his own business. Actually, most of us - four out of eight - are self-employed. There's not a lot of job opportunities, so if you're creative then you are working for yourself. It's definitely hit home here. And Jersey was good for a while - like a bubble in terms of not being affected as much as everybody else. But it's come home to roost for sure."

John assured me that, rain or shine, they would be there on Sunday. I jokingly told him that if it was raining I would probably miss the show because rain does a real number on my hair.

Photo courtesy of Backlight Records.

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