2011 East Coast Music Award Nominees for “Fan Choice Entertainer of the Year”, Alert The Medic is a four piece rock band from Halifax, Nova Scotia, whose anthemic sound and high energy performances have been captivating audiences everywhere. Alert The Medic’s sophomore album, "We, the weapon", received 2010 Music Nova Scotia Award Nominations for Group Recording of the Year and Pop/Rock Artist/Group Recording of the Year as well as 2010 East Coast Music Award Nominations for Sirius Satellite Rock Recording of the Year and Vibe Creative Group Single of the Year for "Atlas", the debut release from the album. “Atlas” achieved national rotation for over 14 weeks and cracked Mediabase's Top 50 Active Rock Canadian Charts. The album continues to break new ground, charting on college radio stations from coast to coast. In 2010, Alert The Medic performed at the JunoFest celebrations in St. John’s, Newfoundland, alongside fellow rockers The Arkells and Hollerado, and garnered a coveted spot on the Music Nova Scotia Week Gala Awards Show stage in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia.
"We, the weapon" is Alert The Medic’s highly anticipated follow up to their 2006 Self-Titled debut. This album is nothing, if not forceful. A dynamic display of infectious melodies and passionate performances; driven only by their collective rock tendencies. Fueled by childhood MTV propaganda and the beckoning bright lights of their nearby Halifax metropolis, these former rural rockers are determined to fill the map with thumbtack holes.
In 2006, Alert the Medic joined forces with talented Producer Laurence Currie (Sloan, Wintersleep). The first single off this Self-Titled project, "Reported Missing" climbed to #1 on East Coast Radio and garnered the group national attention. 2008 saw Award Nominations from both the ECMA and Music Nova Scotia, including CBC’s coveted Galaxie Rising Star of the Year and, with the welcomed addition of guitarist Troy Arseneault, Alert the Medic began pre-production for their sophomore album. The year was capped off with the D250 Rollercoaster Tour with Ill Scarlett and appearing as the special quest of Our Lady Peace at Center 200 in Sydney, Nova Scotia.
In the spring of 2009, Alert the Medic temporarily relocated to Toronto and rejoined Currie to create, "We, the weapon” - the next installment in their collection. Toronto provided inspiration in the most unlikely of places - culture, history, people and poverty, overthrown by an endless skyline and glimpses of beauty, all tangled within a concrete jungle. These experiences were pivotal in the development of Alert the Medic’s unique sound. "We, the weapon" is an excellent representation of big city claustrophobia and small town frustration, citing that somewhere in-between there is always room for another voice. Songs such as "Let's Hear It For the Symphony" and "The Wound That Won't Heal", call on the youth of the world to stand up and be counted, while "The Weatherman (pt.2)" presents a haunting tone, finding the lack of light at the end of the tunnel.
Alert the Medic's blue-collared approach to touring and compelling live performances make them a stand out on the East Coast music scene.
"...man, did they ever wake people up."
Kate Harper - 2009 Canadian Music Week Showcase Review for Chart Attack - Toronto, ON
"We, the weapon by Halifax natives, Alert The Medic is fast-paced, heavy-hitting fun."
Ryan Conway, Reviewer, East Coast Overture
*Business Plan provided upon request.
Ryan MacDonald - Lead Vocals/Guitar
Matthew Campbell - Bass
Dale Wilson - Drums
Troy Arseneault - Guitar
Alert The Medic - We, the weapon 2009
Alert The Medic - Alert The Medic - 2006
They, the Weapon
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Halifax’s Alert the Medic are Armed and Dangerous March 24, 2010 2:38 AM Adam Burns Ru-dy! Ru-d...Halifax’s Alert the Medic are Armed and Dangerous
March 24, 2010 2:38 AM
Ru-dy! Ru-dy! Ru-dy!
For those of us who remember 1993, that name conjures up images of Sean Astin being carried off of the field to thunderous applause from the faithful at Notre Dame Stadium. Not surprising, then, that when four friends from Stellarton needed a name for the stadium-ready rock band they had formed, Rudy was the handle they settled on.
But the band made the right decision when they decided on their current moniker: it’s not hard to imagine hearing the plea being shouted amid machine gun fire, but as a band name, “Alert the Medic” is a command aimed squarely at the listener.
The urgency that the name conveys is a hallmark of the band’s entire output. It is reflected in every aspect of the band’s 2009 sophomore release: anxious song titles like “Aid the Getaway” and “Cause for Alarm;” the shout-along choruses of “Hey Kid, to the Back of the Line” and “Let’s Hear it for the Symphony;” and even the album’s title, the vaguely threatening We, the Weapon.
Despite the unmistakable urgency in their music, in person the gang from Alert the Medic is easy-going, friendly and modest. The band was recently in Sydney for the East Coast Music Awards, and I had the pleasure of interviewing them for Caper Radio.
The day of the interview was a warm and sunny Saturday in early March, and the band arrived at the studio fresh from an afternoon sound check at Smooth Herman’s. Guitarist Troy Arsenault was absent, but the remaining three members—drummer Dale Wilson, bassist Matt Campbell and guitarist/vocalist Ryan MacDonald—crowd into the cozy broadcast booth.
The discussion was friendly, and the band answered all of my questions with the relaxed honesty of three friends who are grateful to be in their position. We covered many topics during our brief chat: the band’s relentless touring schedule (the band has plans to get some sleep “on the 24th of March, maybe,” says MacDonald); their influences (mostly early 90s alt-rock like Pearl Jam and Foo Fighters, though Wilson admits to the occasional “guilty pleasure”); and their chances at taking home either of the two ECMAs for which the band was nominated, which according to MacDonald was “slim to none.”
In describing “Atlas,” the tune that garnered the group a nomination for Single of the Year, the song’s author is characteristically nonchalant: the closest he comes to stereotypical rock-star pretention is to admit that the song is “sort of artsy.”
Despite MacDonald’s humility, the tune in question is a great bit of song-writing—a fist-pumping, guitar-driven rock anthem reminiscent of the Foo Fighters’ “Times Like These”. Wilson’s propulsive, tom-heavy back beat powers the song’s verses, which are punctuated by an anthemic chorus worthy of Eddie Vedder:
Off to see the world Off to paint a canvas With colours we’ve collected
That “we” in the refrain of “Atlas” refers, of course, to the band as a whole; MacDonald penned the tune about “touring around with [bandmates Arsenault, Wilson, and Campbell], having a good time, struggling through, playing music, and getting up the next morning and doing it all over again.”
Catch the band live, and it is obvious that the “struggle” is paying off; Alert the Medic is a supremely cohesive musical unit whose appeal owes as much to their tight, intricate playing as to their rousing, bombastic songs.
I recently had the extreme good fortune recently to see two of the band’s shows, in two vastly different venues, allowing me to witness ATM’s incredible versatility first hand. The first of these took place in early December at Governor’s Pub, where the band was playing with local rising star Carleton Stone.
Originally, I had gone to hear Stone, who played a fantastic solo set to an unusually attentive crowd (at least for a typical Friday night bar show). However, I was promptly blown away by Alert the Medic, who ripped through their 90-minute set with hardly a moment’s rest. The setting for my second ATM experience could not have been further removed from that Friday night at Governor’s. A few weeks ago, the band played a show at Memorial High School in North Sydney, as part of the ECMA’s “Soundwaves” competition (local sax-rockers The Company opened the show).
A lot of bands probably would have phoned this one in, but Alert the Medic took the auditorium stage at 10 am and rocked with all the sweaty, frenetic energy they brought to Governor’s. “It’s always wicked to [. . .] play for people who are under the age of 19 for a change,” Campbell said of the “Soundwaves” gig. For their part, the 500 or so kids in attendance—who otherwise would have been stuck in math class—were listening closely, clapping along, and cheering enthusiastically between songs. The experience was unique and totally memorable, and the band earned dozens of fans (and sold dozens of t-shirts) that morning.
If I sound over-enthusiastic about this band, it’s only because I think their music warrants it. If you’re not familiar with the band, check them out on the web and give them a listen. Or, alternatively, you could just stroll through the cafeteria at CBU; a few of us at CAPR Radio (hi, Sarah) have been spinning their album, more or less incessantly, since Christmas.
To hear “Atlas,” “Aid the Getaway,” and more, check out: www.myspace.com/alertthemedic
To listen to Caper Radio, go to www.caperradio.com
Alert the fans: Medic’s back
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I THOUGHT AT FIRST that the title of Alert the Medic’s new CD We, the Weapon might be a reference ...
I THOUGHT AT FIRST that the title of Alert the Medic’s new CD We, the Weapon might be a reference to how the band drove its van around downtown Toronto during the month it spent recording there last spring.
Singer/guitarist Ryan MacDonald laughs at the idea, while drummer Dale Wilson suggests that their driving style did morph from over-apologetic Maritimer to hardened urban road warrior as the Stellarton-raised quartet navigated the crowded streets.
But the record—which Alert the Medic launches on Saturday at the Seahorse Tavern with Ontario’s Opus Road and the Stanfields—is less about brute force and more about the thin edge of the wedge.
"It’s about how the voice can be a weapon, and the pen is mightier than the sword," explains MacDonald. "It’s not so much that we, the band, are a weapon, but that our thoughts and ideas can be forces of change.
""It’s not a negative thing, it’s not about violence or hurting others; weapon is a strong word, but we’re trying to use it as a positive, not a negative.""
We, the Weapon is nothing if not forceful. Each track is a well-polished example of Alert the Medic’s driving rock attack and fine attention to melodic detail. Guitarist Troy Arseneault says they started working on the songs over a year ago, honing the arrangements as they performed them live, and then cracking down even further by getting a rehearsal space in Toronto for a week before going into the studio with Laurence Currie, who also produced the band’s self-titled debut at Halifax’s Sonic Temple.
""Our pre-production was pretty extensive," Arseneault recalls. ""We’d roll into our practice space around eight or nine in the morning and wouldn’t leave there until seven at night.
"There was this drummer guy down the hallway, we called him Click Track, because he must have played in some percussive band."
""He’d be playing before we got there in the morning an he’d still be going when we left," adds MacDonald. "He’d just be playing the same samba beat all day long. He was awesome, I don’t think he even left to go to the bathroom. He’s probably still playing it now."
Rather than stay stuck in a groove like Click Track, Alert the Medic really wanted to kick things up a notch for We, the Weapon, and the record sounds a shade tougher than the debut, although there are still pop touches like guest Rob Crowell’s keyboards and even Scott Long’s bagpipes on Cross Your Fingers ("You’re allowed to get away with bagpipes on one song, AC/DC made it cool," grins bassist Matt Campbell).
The band credits being in a new place, free of the distractions of home, with allowing it to take things a bit further and consider new options.
"It allowed us to focus a lot more," says Wilson. "Last time we did it here in Halifax, and I was going to work and everyone was trying to work out schedules. This way we just dropped everything to go to Toronto and make the record, sharing an apartment, hosting friends who came through town and trying not to kill each other."
"It helped me lyrically because when it came down to crunch time, where I’d have to come up with a line or a verse, or fill in a few missing pieces of the puzzle, I could look around for inspiration," explains MacDonald.
"There’d be different sights you’re not used to, different colours and tones; that really translated for me into writing lyrics.
""Being in Toronto got some some really good things out of me, feelings and situations. I could have written those songs here in Halifax, but the feeling would be different."
Alert The Medic - We, The Weapon (Review)
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Alert The Medic - We, The Weapon By Ryan Conway (09/30/09) ALERT THE MEDIC - We, The Weapon We,...Alert The Medic - We, The Weapon
By Ryan Conway
ALERT THE MEDIC - We, The Weapon We, The Weapon by Halifax natives Alert The Medic is fast-paced, heavy-hitting fun. With many memorable hooks that you would find in any hit pop song, with the exception that the lyrics are good. Very good.
Songs like “Aid the Getaway,” “Hey Kid, to the Back to of the Line,” and “Stealing Scenery” are fine examples of how to use repetition to captivate the listener. The verses of these songs can be so catchy – you may find yourself doing plenty of toe-tapping or possibly even singing along. Even if you are in an office setting. Not that I have ever done that.
They can perform more light-hearted fare very well. But can Alert The Medic make a believable enough transition into tracks with a more serious tone? Yes. They can. Alert The Medic have a pretty decent flare for the dramatic.
“The Weatherman Pt. 2”, for example, is well-executed. The piano used on the track really helps to build the song’s dramatic atmosphere. The guitar shreds are a nice touch as well, giving the song some extra power.
Lead singer Ryan MacDonald, delivers a soild vocal performace throughout the album. His versitile vocal range only makes the songs all the more memorable. The shredding skills of guitarist Troy Arseneault also prove to be noteworthy as they provide the album with a little extra hard-hitting edge.
We, The Weapon is very solid overall. A good and very fun listen.
Alert The Medic @ CMW 2009
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This indie rock quartet have been together since 2002 and are still strangely unsigned. They receive...This indie rock quartet have been together since 2002 and are still strangely unsigned. They received two Nova Scotia Music Award nominations in 2007 and garnered two East Coast Music Awards nominations the same year. It's easy to see why.
Alert The Medic were the first proper band to play the Music Nova Scotia showcase, which until they took the stage, was dominated by singer/songwriters playing acoustic sets. They were a welcome change in the lineup and man, did they ever wake people up.
It might be surprising that this was the only band I saw jump around on stage, climb on their instruments and flail around like dervishes during Canadian Music Week, but that's certainly the case. Singer/guitarist Ryan MacDonald launched himself into the air and generally tore up the tiny Rivoli stage. He tried to climb on top of a keyboard at the end of the set, which didn't exactly work and he ended up falling over, but the band's entire performance was ripe with youthful enthusiasm.
Guitarist Troy Arsenault shows great shred potential, and he and bassist Matthew Campbell and drummer Dale Wilson did a great job backing MacDonald up during Alert The Medic's performance. MacDonald's hair was plastered to his face with sweat at the end of their set and you got the feeling that every performance is just as intense for him.
Nova Scotia bands seem to have a thing with looking like they're late '90s alt.rockers, what with their zip-up hoodies, baggy pants and Adidas shoes. They were rampant during Alert The Medic's set. The image may not be all there, but the sound is, and the band will definitely be ones to watch.
Alert The Medic Opening for Our Lady Peace
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Stellarton, N.S. – Halifax/Pictou County based rockers, Alert The Medic, are getting set to take to...Stellarton, N.S. – Halifax/Pictou County based rockers, Alert The Medic, are getting set to take to the road for what will be an exciting month of performances. To kick-off an event filled couple of weeks, Alert The Medic’s first date is on September 11th opening for Canadian rock legends Our Lady Peace. The concert will take place at Center 200 in Sydney, Nova Scotia and is presented by the CBU Student’s Union.
Alert The Medic will be in Truro on September 19th performing at the Marigold Center, for Youthstock and on September 20th they begin a five-date tour of Nova Scotia universities. The Democracy 250 “Rollercoaster Tour” (with ill Scarlet; The Jimmy Swift Band; and The Tom Fun Orchestra) includes dates at Dalhousie University; St. Mary's University; Acadia University ; St. F.X. University; and University College of Cape Breton.
For more information on the band and tour dates please visit www.alertthemedic.com.
Alert the Medic Receive 2008 Rock Star Award
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Stellarton, Nova Scotia – Pictou County rockers, Alert the Medic, were honoured recently by the...
Stellarton, Nova Scotia – Pictou County rockers, Alert the Medic, were honoured recently by the Pictou County Tourist Association. The group received the coveted 2008 Rock Star Award at the Association’s 11th Annual Gala Awards ceremony held at the Museum of Industry, Stellarton, Nova Scotia.
The award is presently yearly by the Association in recognition of outstanding achievements and dedication to the Pictou County music industry and is sponsored by Fibbersmusic.ca.
Past recipients of the award have been fellow Pictou County musicians, Steven Bowers and J. D. Fortune. Pictured above are band members (L-R) Troy Arsenault; Dale Wilson; Matthew Campbell; Steve Chaisson (Fibbersmusic.ca); Ryan MacDonald; Matt Kennedy (Fibber’s Pub and Eatery); and Jon Landry.
Alert the Medic Receives Two ECMA Nominations
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(Stellarton, NS) - The East Coast Music Association announced the 2008 Music Award nominees today at...(Stellarton, NS) - The East Coast Music Association announced the 2008 Music Award nominees today at the Cellar Pub & Grill on the UNB Campus in Fredericton. Nominated in two categories are Pictou County rockers, Alert the Medic (Ryan MacDonald, Matthew Campbell and Dale Wilson). The group has been nominated for the CBC Galaxie Rising Star Recording of the Year and the Sirius Satellite Radio Rock Recording of the Year for their self-titled album, Alert the Medic.
“The 2008 East Coast Music Award nominees truly reflect the vibrant musical diversity among East Coast artists,” said Wade Pinhorn, chair of the East Coast Music Association. “They consist of not only well-established and popular bands and musicians, but also fresh new faces and sounds – the rising stars of East Coast music. The East Coast Music Awards continue to be a celebration of the region’s immense wealth of talent, once again bringing East Coast music into a national and international spotlight.”
Alert the Medic’s sophomore album has garnered industry attention since its release. Singles from the album, “Reported Missing” and “Her Plan of Attack”, have both been featured in the Top 10 songs on the popular radio syndicated show “The East Coast Countdown”, with “Reported Missing” reaching the coveted #1 spot in the spring of this year. “ATM” was honoured by Music Nova Scotia this year, receiving award nominations in the Pop Rock Artist/Recording of the Year and Group/Recording of the Year categories. Their third single, “The Perfect Love Song” is receiving rave reviews and is currently in rotation on radio stations across the country.
The ECMA Music Awards Gala will take place on Sunday, February 10th, 2008, and will be hosted by Canadian comedian Mark Critch of This Hour has 22 Minutes. Tickets for ECMA 2008 (February 7-10) are now on sale at the Playhouse and Aitken Centre box offices in Fredericton, by calling (506) 454-ECMA (3262), or by visiting www.ecma.com. For more information on the band, go to www.alertthemedic.com.
Alert the Medic Receives Two Music Nova Scotia Award Nominations
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(Stellarton, NS) - Music Nova Scotia recently announced the music and industry nominations for the 1...(Stellarton, NS) - Music Nova Scotia recently announced the music and industry nominations for the 11th annual Nova Scotia Music Awards to be held November 9 – 11th. Amoung the nominees are Pictou County rockers, Alert the Medic, receiving two nominations. The group has been nominated in both the Pop Rock Artist/Recording of the Year and Group/Recording of the Year categories for their self-titled album, Alert the Medic. Music Nova Scotia’s executive director Gordon Lapp said, “The quality of the nominations this year has surpassed any list in recent years. This is a reflection on the level of talent in Nova Scotia that just keeps getting better each year.”
Alert the Medic’s sophomore album has garnered industry attention since its release in October 2006. Singles from the album, “Reported Missing” and “Her Plan of Attack” have both been featured in the top 10 on the popular radio syndicated show “The East Coast Countdown”, with “Reported Missing” reaching the coveted #1 spot in the spring of this year. The group were showcased at the 2007 ECMA Awards held this past February in Halifax, Nova Scotia and performed to rave reviews at the 2006 Music Nova Scotia festivities.
For the second year in a row, Nova Scotia Music Week will take place in Liverpool. The White Point Beach resort will host the conference, industry brunch, registration and a slew of late night performances throughout the three-day event. The majority of the awards will be given out at the Industry Awards Brunch on Sunday, Nov. 11 at 11:30 a.m., with the remaining eight being handed out that evening at the Music Awards Show at the Astor Theatre at 8 p.m.
Festival passes and tickets to events go on sale this Friday, Sept. 28 at the Astor Theatre, Liverpool box office, or charge by phone at (902) 354-5250. For more information on Nova Scotia Music Week, visit: www.musicnovascotia.ca . For more information on Alert the Medic go to www.alertthemedic.com.
The Perfect Love Song
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It's the third single from the boys from Pictou County. And it sounds different from their first 2 r...It's the third single from the boys from Pictou County. And it sounds different from their first 2 releases. "Her Plan of Attack" was a blistering rocker, and "Reported Missing" had a more epic feel. "The Perfect Love Song" is a mix between a power ballad and a sensitve rocker. ATM, as their fans call them with much love, aren't content to do the same thing over and over...and it shows.
Who to watch in 2007
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By Tom Bedell The Halifax Daily News January 4th, 2007 Last week we took a look back at 2006, a...By Tom Bedell
The Halifax Daily News
January 4th, 2007
Last week we took a look back at 2006, and now that the New Year's Eve hangover has subsided and bail has been posted, it's probably a good idea to look ahead at ought-seven, and who to keep an eye out for. Here are three that spring to mind:
• Classified: After a strong showing at Nova Scotia Music Week, his Find Out video has been nominated for video of the year at this year's ECMAs. If you haven't seen it already, try to find the animated video for The Maritime Song ... and ask yourself "Why aren't we using that for Nova Scotia Tourism commercials?"
• Rose Cousins: Her strong If You Were for Me CD has garnered praise on both sides of the border, and she's lent her crystal-clear voice to recent recordings by Jill Barber and Matt Mays.
• Alert the Medic: Poised for a breakthrough in 2007. They'll play a rock showcase at the ECMAs in Halifax next month, but if you want to get an early peek, check them out at The Frigate Jan. 17. They'll also launch a most-of-the-way-across Canada tour in March.
There are no upcoming dates at this time.