18 rabbit
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18 rabbit

Brandon, Manitoba, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2001

Brandon, Manitoba, Canada
Established on Jan, 2001
Band Rock Alternative




"18 Rabbit Review"

"I've never actually seen 18 Rabbit play; I'd never actually even heard any of their music until I sat down and listened to this CD. I have to say though, that I'm fairly impressed with what I heard. I was expecting the typical mix between The Tragically Hip and other overplayed sounds in the Canadian rock scene, but my assumption was proven wrong. With a nice mix of moody rock and experimental guitar lines that at times almost sound like something you would hear in an electro-clash / new wave song, it was easy to see that this isn't what you usually hear on the radio. I've always been, and always will be a supporter of bands who decide to take a step in a direction away from what is considered to be mainstream. That is exactly what 18 Rabbit do. Reading an article in the Brandon Sun, the group says that their first album seems to lack the focus that they wanted. There is definitely no lack of focus on Our Place in the Shadows. The album flows beautifully and without any major flaws. There are even certain times that I can hear a glimmer of Katatonia (a somewhat similar, moody metal sounding band that I've listened to for a while now). The use of the sound clips throughout the album also work really well in adding to the song. It seems to help with keeping the album focused. I'm very impressed with this album and it's ability to grab the listener at the very first song and not let go until the very end of the last. The members of the band (Les Mitchell, Ryan Felstead, and Darrin "Dirt" Cherewayko) communicate really well on each of the tracks. Lately, listening to bands, the music seems to feel really divided. It's like these bands have never played together. They aren't able to feed off each other and come together to form one harmonious sound. 18 Rabbit achieve that sound, and it's probably due to the fact that they play quite a bit around the Brandon area. I hear nothing but good things about their live performances and I think it's probably time I found out. I think it's probably time you found out too."

- The Quill - Brandon University's Student Newspaper (September 29, 2005) by Tim Brown, Arts and Enter

"18 Rabbit Releases its Second CD"

"Named after the 13th ruler of Copan, a Maya city in Honduras by Ryan Felstead, the archaeology major in the group, 18 Rabbit recently released its second album.

The Brandon-based band had been through a few incarnations before settling on the current personnel - guitarist Les Mitchell, bassist/keyboardist Felstead and drummer Darrin Cherewayko.

Their efforts in the studio produced our place in the shadows, a collection of nine original songs.

Each of the musicians gives a solid performance on this disc, helping to create a unifying sound that is well on its way to becoming their trademark.

Tinged with techno effects and underlying energy, the overall effect is earnest, lacking the over-produced slickness of their contemporaries' recordings, thus revealing the essentials - poignant lyrics, catchy melodies, simple harmonies, and steady, driving rhythms.

Though his baritone is somewhat reminiscent of The Hip's Gordon Downie, lead singer Felstead is unique in his own right and helps establish in each of the songs, a raw, edgy, passionate identity.

Meanwhile, the banter between the other musicians which was inserted between cuts and which sometimes carry on within a song, sets up or carries forth the mood.

Witness the chatter at the outset of dilate - a song about pop culture and the future of communication. The lyrics maintain the theme of unwillingly getting swept away by changes in society.

Musically, the stripped down tracks are highly effective. The keyboard effects are simple, but either introduce a repeated melodic pattern, or in other instances, they steer the tempo. The starkness of the drumming is supported by the grinding guitar lines.

All in all, this project is more than just promising. It reveals a rock treasure in our very own backyard.

The newly-released CD, our place in the shadows by 18 Rabbit, is now available through: www.18rabbitrocks.com or at local CD outlets."
- The Brandon Sun (October 23rd, 2005) by Joanne F. Villeneuve

"The Blame Is Ours - 18 Rabbit"

The Blame Is Ours - 18 Rabbit
Yorkton This Week (Aug. 29, 2007)
By Calvin Daniels
The first time you listen to 18 Rabbit's CD The Blame Is Ours wear your headphones on. The lead into the opening cut Levitate is a definite sensory twist on headphones. With that little secret suggestion out of the way, I must say I was curious to hear this band since doing a story earlier this year on a concert at Assessippi Ski Resort in which 18 Rabbit were sharing a stage with Volcanoless In Canada, the locally well-known band. I wanted to know if this Manitoba band performed the same stylistically as Volcanoless. They don't. Now that isn't a bad thing, just a fact that 18 Rabbit attacks their style of rock and roll with a more electric sound. This is pretty straight ahead rock, not quite metal, but at least leaning in that direction. There are times you can almost hear the Rolling Stones a band these guys may have grown up following. 18 Rabbit has a sound that while still having a rawness that you want in rock, has a maturity to it as well. That simply shows these guys are becoming a veteran unit with The Blame Is Ours being the band's third recording effort. It follows their debut effort Smoking Gods and Our Place In the Shadows.
The band is made up of bassist Ryan Felstad the writer of the lyrics on all cuts and the band's main vocalist, Les Mitchell, vocalist and guitarist, and Darrin Cherewayko on drums.
In his writing Felstad shows a political awareness that he brings out in his music, Lord of War, a number interspersed with supposed news broadcast clips, is a powerful piece, and lyrically is the best here.
18 Rabbit also has lots of straight rock here too, with cuts such as Mind Ablaze, Crowned, and Juggernaut definitely catching my attention. I like these guys – a lot! If you like edgy rock take a chance and follow these guys down the rabbit hole.
- Yorkton This Week (Aug. 29, 2007) by Calvin Daniels

"Great Originality on 18 Rabbit’s New CD"

Great originality on 18 Rabbit’s new CD
Wheat City Journal (May 17, 2007)
By Frank McGwire
Within the last year or so it seems there has been a rock n’ roll renaissance towards original material within the Westman music scene. This week we feature a band that has been ahead of this movement since they formed to permeate the masses with their inventive and original sound. Since arriving on the scene at the onset of the new millennium, 18 Rabbit has always done its own thing and are respectfully considered by many as leaders in the local music scene.
While the opening track of 18 Rabbit’s third release comes rippling out of my speakers, I settle in to do the first “Face The Music” CD review. The intro to “Levitate” features an effect I’d never heard before. It’s instantly interesting, reminiscent of something U2’s the Edge might start one of his solos with. This guitar effect pulls me in and as the name suggests, would be worthy of bed music for a segment in a Chris Angel Mind Freak episode.
The chugging guitars of “Mind Ablaze” rattle the fillings out of my back molars as the “Blame Is Ours” pulls me back in. More and more I realize that Les “Teen Wolf’s” guitar tones, effects and thick sounding chords act as a soundscape for Fuzzy’s lyrics supported by a solid rhythm section that serves as the perfect backdrop. The chords become dark when they need to be as the commentary gets a tad more serious and conversely the guitars lighten up when the seriousness of the subject matter is reduced. This combination it would seem is a given with most songs by most groups but this band does it with a certain conviction that mixes an appealing amount of experimentation.

“Violent Shine” is one of the radio friendly tracks. It has less commercial stuffiness and more of an experimental sound with echoes of early 80s new wave rock. The vocal phrasing and tone remind me a bit of Collective Soul. If there was any hope for a Brandon band to garner local airplay this track might be it. If it were recorded by a major label heavyweight, it wouldn’t surprise me if it hit the rock radio charts.

“Lord of War” – a nod to the constant unrest in the Middle East and the root cause of that volatility. This track stays interesting with intertwining actual news clips that contain updates from the war torn situation. This six-minute-plus track may seem long and plodding but so has the war in the Middle East and being that this is rock ’n roll commentary on that dire situation, it works. Listen for some upper register vocal prowess from Fjelstead as the track culminates with news clips that feature an appearance from George W. The song concludes with a clip that offers a solution but it’s not from Dubbya . . . well, what did you expect?

“Washed Away”, “BTCP” and “Crowned” somehow run together, harkening me back to the days of the album listening experience. These tracks offer up riffy, rhythmic arrangements that might provoke envy from even the most established recording act. In the tracks “Whipping Boy,” “Juggernaut” and “Back To Me” the listener is offered what I consider the signature 18 Rabbit sound. These tracks have an unmistaken mysteriously ominous texture.
“Blame” is a 10-track sonically sound slab full of surprises or as I like to describe them, explorative audio delights that exemplify the groups ever evolving sound. To have an album of this quality created right here in our own backyard should definitely be considered a feather in the Westman music community’s cap!

- Wheat City Journal (May 17, 2007) by Frank McGwire


smoking gods CD - 2002
our place in the shadows CD - 2005
the blame is ours CD/DVD - 2007
one state of being CD?DVD - 2009

day zero - 2014



"18 rabbit" is an original rock band from Brandon, Manitoba, Canada. The group is releasing a fifth full length disc, 'day zero', their most ambitious musical project to date. Ryan Felstead (lead vocals/bass), Troy McKenzie (drums/percussion/vocals), and Leslie Mitchell (guitar/vocals), are bringing their influences and experiences together into one moody and melodic wall of noise...



(204) 761-0837

Band Members