Andrew Pahl
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Andrew Pahl

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada | INDIE

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada | INDIE
Band Rock Singer/Songwriter

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"Dreams Deferred No Longer"

When Andrew Pahl put together his debut album, Dreams Deferred, a couple of years ago, he was clearly in the captain’s seat, playing and recording the whole record on his own. It was an approach that worked for Pahl on that initial release, at least as far as the actual creation of the music went. But once it was done and he had decided that he wanted to play some live shows behind the album, he knew that a band was the way to go and he recruited some friends to take the stage alongside him as the Andrew Pahl Band.

Since that initial foray into the live arena, Pahl and the others have morphed into a band with its own identity, rather than simply being the songwriter and some back up musicians. It’s a change that Pahl welcomes, and one that has impacted the approach that he’s taking on the new album that he has recently begun recording.

“[Dreams Deferred was recorded over a ten-month period] because I was doing everything myself, but the parts were actually recorded quite quickly without much thought as to how it was going to sound in the big picture—how one song would sound to another, that sort of thing,” Pahl explains. “This one is very much focussing on how we can make each song different but sound cohesive.

“And, working with different musicians this time, it’s taken longer just to make sure we’re on the same page as far as what we want to play, whereas if I was doing it myself I can just bash it out how I want to and there’s no compromise,” he adds. “I think ultimately the compromise is going to make it a stronger record because it’s not just my point of view ... everybody brings something different to the mix, so it just sort of takes it to unexpected places, and I think that’s the beauty of it.”

That willingness to embrace what the others bring to his music is a sign that Pahl is in the music game for the long haul. Music and evolution go hand in hand as time and experience alter a songwriter’s life. Ignore those changes and it’s all too easy to become complacent, simply reshaping previous works instead of crafting new ones. It’s not a matter of trying to chase a trend, but one of staying true to oneself while realizing that music is a living thing that is shaped by the players.

“The last album was very much me on the corner of my bed writing with my acoustic guitar, whereas this one, I’ll come in with the idea for the song, but it’s very much the four of us fleshing out the parts and taking it in new directions,” Pahl says, admitting that he’s learned a lot from playing with the band, especially on stage, where it can be difficult for a single performer to hold an audience’s attention with a sound that has fewer dynamics than what is possible with a group. “I much prefer playing with the band than just doing stuff by myself because it’s a bit more interactive and you can do a lot more than you can just standing up there with an acoustic guitar.”

Pahl’s upcoming gig will be the first one for the band since last September. As he puts it, the group has “been on hiatis from the live stuff for a few months due to recording and some band surgeries—both metaphorically and literally.

“We lost our drummer—he decided school is more important, so he left the band and we had to find a new guy,” he says. “So that was the one surgery that took place. It took a couple of months to find somebody and then Aidan [Lucas-Buckland] from Yes Nice joined up in January, so we’ve been playing with him since then. And then in March, our guitar player had his thyroid out so he was sort of sidelined for about six weeks. Since then we’ve just been working mainly on music for the new album.”

While it’s been a few months since Pahl and the band played live, they certainly haven’t been ignoring their music. “We’ve been rehearsing and I’ve been writing a bunch of new music,” Pahl enthuses. “We’re heading back into the studio, so I’ve been writing that, and then even without a drummer, Jon [Halton, guitarist] and Ryan [Miller, bassist] and I were getting together and trying to flesh stuff out and figure stuff out for the new record, so we’ve been playing, but just not out and about because we’re wanting things to sound good.”

Now that the band and its members have recovered from the various surgeries, the next order of business for Pahl is to record his second album, and he’s looking forward to getting that done.
“I did some demos just at my place and we actually just started recording,” he reveals. “We just finished the drum tracks and so we’re just starting to lay down everything else—bass and guitars and stuff like that. It’s coming along, but it’s always a slower process than you’d like. But I think that by taking it a bit slower this time it’ll hopefully come out with a better project.” V


Sat, Apr 26 (9 pm)
Andrew Pahl Band
With Andy Shauf
Wunderbar, free
- EDEN MUNRO - Vue Weekly


"Featured Artist August 2008"

Featured artist on Canadian Internet Radio show. An hour long broadcast including music, biography and listeners comments.

http://www.indietalent.ca/showsmenu.shtml - Indie Talent


"Oh, So Much To Choose From..."

Considering we can’t decide what to rent at the video store — let alone make any real choices about what to do with our lives — we here at SEE wanted to lighten the weight on your soul with a roundup of the shows we’re most excited to see at the WCMA Fest. Considering the whackload of talent that’ll be sprawled all over town, we’re hoping this makes scheduling your evenings this weekend a little easier.

The Old Wives, Andrew Pahl

Picking my must-see shows was easy. The first on my list is Edmonton’s own The Old Wives who will be spewing gritty punk rock all over the insides of Teddy’s at 11 p.m. on Saturday. My second choice is also a local, who can be found Saturday night in the Axis Café Metro Room at 8 p.m. His name is Andrew Pahl, and yes, I picked him because he has the sexiest name I’ve ever heard. That, and his Sesame Street-influenced sound makes me feel funny inside — in a good way. God, I’m a dork.

- ANDREW PAUL - See Magazine


"Indieville.com"

You folks remember Duncan Sheik? He had a hit with "Barely Breathing" but few realize he released five competent singer/songwriter albums, including 2006's acclaimed White Limousine. Well, Edmonton's Andrew Pahl is like Duncan Sheik number two. His Dreams Deferred is a consistent, solid work of pop/rock targeted at the adult alternative demographic. He's glossed his sound up more than Sheik's earlier efforts, and it sounds a bit more contemporary, but if you like one you'll probably dig the other.

This record isn't exactly my bag, but I can respect catchy pop music when I hear it. A tune like "Shaken" is a basic pop tune with more hooks than a slaughterhouse, and "Crazy" has a pretty release melody. Whether it's the more "rock"-y stuff like "The World Surrounds You" or the fragile acoustic strokes of a song like "Across the Waves," this stuff is catchy enough to get trapped in your head within two listens. I would have liked Pahl to try something a little less conservative on Dreams Deferred, but I can appreciate the importance of a solid, simple singer/songwriter record now and again. This is a likeable, pleasant album that could be enjoyed by many if given the right promotion. And I like it a lot better than much of the contrived "singer / songwriter" stuff that's given radio airtime these days. - Matt Shimmer


Discography

Dreams Deferred (fall 2006)
The Wood Between the Worlds EP (spring 2011)

We have received radio airplay on the following stations:

CKDU 88.1 FM - Halifax
CJSR 88.5 FM - Edmonton - Reached #20 on the top 30 chart.
CFCR 90.5 FM - Saskatoon
CJAM 91.5 FM - Windsor/Detroit
CFBX 92.5 FM - Kamloops - Reached #17 on the top 30 chart.
CFUV 101.9 FM - Victoria
CILU 102.7 FM - Thunder Bay
CBC Radio One - Saskatchewan
KOUG 580 AM - Vancouver, Washington, USA
100% Music Radio
INDIE 104 - iRadio LA www.iradiola.com

Photos

Bio

Hey. My name is Andrew and I used to write songs on my guitar. When I was done, I'd record them in my office and rip them onto my iPod to listen to them in my car on the way to work.

A few years ago I put a bunch of these songs together on a disc called "Dreams Deferred" and released it on my friend Jonathan's label, Red Knot Records. I decided I should probably get out and play some shows, so Jonathan and I put together a band with Ryan and Tyler. Tyler then left to go to school so my friend Aidan joined us on drums. We played all throughout the land including numerous dates in and around Edmonton. After playing the 2008 Western Canadian Music Awards I quit/became disillusioned with/hated making music. I broke up the band and stopped playing live anymore. It was a bad time.

However, all was not lost. In my self-imposed exile I started to really love making music again...not loving it because I thought someone else might like it, or I thought it would validate me as a person, but loving it for how alive it made me feel.

So here I am. My name is Andrew and I write songs on my guitar. When I'm done, I record them in my office and rip them onto my iPod to listen to in my car on the way to work.

I will be releasing an EP entitled "The Wood Between the Worlds" digitally on February 22, 2011. Recorded in my office closet and mixed on my car stereo.

- Featured artist on Indie Talent's internet radio show (Aug 2008 - www.indietalent.ca).

- Showcased at the 2008 Western Canadian Music Awards.

- Music featured on PBS Roadtrip Nation.