Amber Reigns
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Amber Reigns

Fort Erie, Ontario, Canada | INDIE

Fort Erie, Ontario, Canada | INDIE
Band Alternative Rock


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Local band Amber Reigns has the right idea"

These guys know how to rock... but more importantly, they know how to think.

Last Friday, I attended the CD release show for local rock group Amber Reigns at the Sessions on the River recording studio on the Niagara Parkway. I have done stories about them in the past, mostly when they went by the name "Artificial Reality" and have known most of the members for a long time. Let's face it, it's a small town and I'm only a few years older than's just the way things work out. I'll get to that in a bit though.

Firstly, their debut self-titled album is 11-tracks of solid rock that certainly isn't stolen from anyone else. These guys have put their heart and soul into these songs and it shows.

Before their performance last Friday, frontman Nick McGuigan explained to the crowd how the album is a product of being very tough on themselves. If they finished a song and didn't like the way it turned out...then it was time to do it again.

This is exactly how a band needs to operate. Don't just settle for something because it's finished and you can't wait to release your album. Give it the final stamp when everyone in the band agrees it is the best it can be.

It pays off, because every member of the band has their time to shine at many points of the album, whether it is shredding a delicious guitar solo, thumping a steady bass line or pulling off several difficult vocal harmonies. These guys can do it all.

Earlier in this column, I mentioned how I've known members of the band for awhile now. The reason I brought this up, is because the story behind the CD release show doesn't surprise me. What I'm referring to is the idea to raise money for local food bank Community Outreach Program Erie (COPE).

How many times have you heard about a group of four guys doing something they love and at the same time raising money for charity?

To my recollection... not very often.

When interviewing them before the show, they all agreed that this was an easy decision since they've done it in the past with other local concerts but also because they know local services such as COPE could often be used by people they know, people who are close to them.

And without the overwhelming support of family and friends that was radiating throughout the studio last Friday, releasing this album probably wouldn't have been possible. - Fort Erie Times

"Band says they couldn't have done it without support from friends and family"

It isn't very often a group of guys in their twenties can accomplish something like this... and be so level-headed at the same time.

Last Friday, local rock group Amber Reigns welcomed over 100 people to the Sessions on the River recording studio on the Niagara Parkway to kick-off the release of their self-titled album, consisting of 11 original tracks.

All four members Nick McGuigan, Enzo Hererra, Chris Rowlands and Josh Humphrey agree it's a great feeling to have accomplished something like this, but say they wouldn't have been able to do it without the support from family and friends they have received over the nearly year-and-a-half period it took to record the album.

"We want to celebrate with the people we know," said guitar player and lead singer Nick McGuigan.

"It's been a long time in the making," added drummer Josh Humphrey.

In the past, the group has performed locally and raised money for local food bank Community Outreach Program Erie (COPE). This time around was no different.

Bass player Chris Rowlands said realistically some of their fans may find themselves using the service provided at COPE, therefore it was an easy decision to raise money for them.

"We want to give back to the people who support us," said Rowlands.

Guitar player Enzo Hererra agreed, saying all it's in the nature of all four members to think of other people before themselves, acting like regular people and not rock stars with swollen egos.

"It's just who we are and we want to help out in any way we can," said Herrera.

McGuigan hopes more people their age will take the initiative to organize fundraisers for local causes, because they are so important and need to receive more attention from people in the same demographic as them.

"We want to inspire more people to do things like this," he said.

Earlier this week, the band also had an in-studio performance at a local radio station they were very excited about.

For more information about the band, visit - Fort Erie Times

"Studio holds benefit concert for local girl"

Heavy metal and fundraising.

Two things that you normally don't see work together too often.

But last Friday the two items on opposite ends of the spectrum came together and raised about $500 for a Fort Erie girl.

Hosted at Sessions on the River, some local bands teamed up to help raise the money for four-year-old Alivia Vanderklei who is suffering from a form of abdominal cancer which has now moved to her brain.

"It's always a gratifying thing to help out someone in a bind whenever we can," said guitarist and vocalist Enzo Herrera for the Fort Erie based rock band Amber Reigns. "I've always believed in charity work and it works for us because at the same time we are helping to build a bigger fan base."

Three bands – Face the Band from Welland and Peoria and Amber Reigns from Fort Erie – played throughout the night in front of a crowd of about 75 inside the music studio on the Niagara Boulevard.

The concert's organizer, Lloyd McGuigan, said he decided to do a benefit show after hearing about the hardships the Vanderklei family was going through.

"It hit me pretty hard because I have kids too and I couldn't even imagine what it must be like," said McGuigan, whose son Nick also plays in Amber Reigns.

He said being a positive role model within the community is something he tries to pass on to his son and that's why he joined the Ridgeway-Crystal Beach Kinsmen club.

So far his son's band has picked up on that mentality as Amber Reigns is frequently asked to perform charity shows around Niagara.

Herrera said it was nice to see an energetic crowd in front of them, but what was more important was for fans to remember why the show was organized.

Alivia's grandfather, Tony Vanderklei, said the $500 would be going towards traveling expenses as Alivia is staying at McMaster Children's Hospital in Hamilton. Her parents, Craig and Chantal, are constantly traveling to see her.

"It means a heck of a lot to see the solidarity of our community in action," he said. "We are humbled and we wish we could do more with it because the ultimate goal is to get a successful healing."

As for Alivia, she has already gone through three chemotherapy treatments, two radiation treatments and two major operations... all before the age of five.

"She's a fighter though and we'll get through this," said Tony. - Fort Erie Times

"Amber Reigns brings back grunge with new CD"

Amber Reigns has only been together a short time, but already good things have begun to happen.

The Fort Erie-based band first came together in November of last year but they have already drawn attention from a local radio station and from south of the border.

The group sent a copy of the song Calm Me Down from their soon-to-be released self-titled CD to Welland classic Rock radio Station Giant-FM. The group was blown away when the station’s operations manager, Peter Morena, invited the group to come in and perform an acoustic version of the song live to air on May 12 at 2 p.m. Two days later, the group will host a CD release party for its self-titled album at Sessions on the River May 14.

“He just loved it,” drummer Josh Humphrey said of Morena’s interest in the song. “He wanted us to come down to the radio station to do an interview. He just liked it so much.”

Morena agreed.

“We think it was a really good song,” he said. They’re very talented.”

And it wasn’t the first time someone took notice of the tune. The song, composed by guitarist Nick McGuigan, first got noticed last year by USA 1st in Jacksonville, Fla. The organization came across the band’s MySpace website in an attempt to find music to use at seminars the group stages at high schools to raise awareness of patriotism among students across the United States. The non-profit organization leased Calm Me Down for a year. The band was also approached by Elevated TV, a Toronto production company, to produce a music video for “Calm Me Down.” The band plans to start work on the video this summer in locations in both Fort Erie and Toronto.

Humphrey was surprised by the interest from Giant-FM in that Amber Reigns’ style of music isn’t what you would describe as classic rock.

With influences such as Alice In Chains and the Deftones, Humphrey describes the group’s sound as being closer to 90s grunge.

That label really hit home late in December of last year when the group was playing a show in St. Catharines.

“There was about four people in the place,” Humphrey said. “The plan was to play with some other bands who didn’t show up. We were playing and this guy says ‘hang on, don’t play. My girlfriend needs to hear this.’ The called us a grunge revival band. It made us feel good.”

Amber Reigns was born out of the ashes of McGuigan’s previous group, Artificial Reality. Many of the songs that make up the Amber Reigns CD come from that period.

“Three of the songs are new,” said Humphrey, who along with guitarist Enzo Herrera, joined with McGuigan and bass player Chris Rowlands to form Amber Reigns late last year.

The initials A.R. were just a coincidence when it came to the group’s name, Humphrey said.

Humphrey said the group chose Amber as they regarded it as a soft colour, while Reigns had the connotation of power the group was seeking.

Humphrey describes the band’s music as “very rock and roll, very raw but progressive.” He added there are no flashy stage gimmicks.

“We’re not too flashy,” Humphrey said. “There’s no flashy backdrops to take away from what we’re doing on stage. We’d rather people just listen to the music.”

Doors open at 7 p.m. for the CD release party at Sessions on the River, 133 Niagara Blvd., in Fort Erie.

Tickets are $10. More information at
- Niagara This Week

"Artificial Reality"

Artificial Reality was formed in 2007. For a band that has only been around a short time they are quickly becoming a popular band in the Niagara Region under high demand. Lead Guitarist Squigs recently has done work for Amala out of Seattle Washington who recruited him to work on Where My Dawgs. Amala has worked with the likes of national recording artist Heart. Future projects are in the works with him now. Squigs is quickly becoming a driving force of the AR success.

The back bone of the group Kyle Wrightman comes from a power house band "Solicity" with the most touring experience of the group Kyle will be sure to groom the guys.

Bassist's Chris Rowlands also comes from a very popular Fort Erie band "Bury The Child". There Chris was the driven force and brings these leadership skills to the band. Chris also toured as an opening act for Billy Talent in the summer of 2004.

AR's music has been on the soudclick charts in the top 300 indie bands in North America. There song You went to number 1 on the charts after 4 days of being released and stayed there for 8 weeks. They also have been in the top 10 Alternative Bands on Indie Charts for the past year where they were number one for 12 weeks straight. You can keep in touch with AR at or and
- Niagara Falls Review


Self Titled Album released May 14th 2010. The single "Calm Me Down was picked up by USA 1st for the High School Seminar "Reality" being used as the theme song for the seminar. It also is getting airplay on Giant FM in Welland Ontario.



Numerous cities and numerous venues these guys have played over the six years together and doing exactly what they love to do “Play Live”. From Fort Erie Ontario they have toured across Canada and the United States..

Reviews from promoters say it all about AR, NDG Montreal “the band is amazing they were tight and have a lot of talent”. From Venues Avant Garde Bar I thought the CD was good when they submitted to play but these guys are better Live and that’s not easy to do”. From bands they have played with, Alan Lord The New Empire let me state that you guys were the Big Revelation last night. As you were playing I was imagining you in a stadium full of screaming fans”.

They performed “Calm Me Down” acoustically on Giant FM in Welland, released their first EP which got great reviews from the Times Review and Niagara this week. Amber Reigns was also voted one of the top 22 Indie bands in Canada by In Discover and currently just finished their second full length EP due out in September.

To have Amber Reigns in your facility, contact them through one of the following means:

Web Sites


Phone 905 351 9758