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"show review"

Cobras Cobras Cobras / Balacade / Young Lions
Tuesday May 1st at Lucky Bar
Another Tuesday, another Lucky Bar show. This was a special occasion
though. Lauren Ashley, tireless promoter of the most interesting bar
shows in Victoria, was turning the ripe age of twenty two. I had to go; she is
like an older sister to me. I am usually tired by the time these bar shows are
in full swing but this was an exception. In celebration of my semester ending
at UVic, I have taken to sleeping from 5:00am until 5:00pm. I ate a breakfast
consisting of bubble tea and ghetto slice (does anyone actually know the name
of that place on Yates?) and made it to this show early. Young Lions were
first, consisting of three guys armed with laptops on ironing boards. They
also had a number of other suprises, including a trumpet and some sort of
metallophone. They played dreamy downtempo electronic music involving
loops and live manipulation, with an indie rock approach. Additions were
made with other physical instruments. An atmosphere of Christmas engulfed
Lucky Bar. Next up was Balacade, occasionally a full band but this time
mostly just a solo Andy Reynolds playing cute songs on his electric guitar
and singing along. Although charismatic enough to get by on his own, he was
joined by a drummer mid-set. The music was innocent and childish, not in
an unrefined way. I thought of playing on the swingsets and how I never won
the contest to get the most distance in a jump. Story of my life. Cobras
Cobras Cobras finished things off, picking up on the childish theme but in a
different way. More like a rowdy game of tag. Not freeze tag, either. Maybe
lava tag on a jungle gym. Frantic and exciting. This is one of my favourite
bands in Victoria. Duncan MacConnell’s tasty guitar and beardy vocals
are coupled with fun keyboard and bass lines. Adding to the already jarring
drumming is a somewhat new addition, Elijah Herron, playing an additional
drum and other assorted things. So cool. Lauren had consumed several shots
by then. I took off, content, and ready to see “Kickin’ It Old Skool� the next
day. |Tyler Pantella| - metropolitan magazine

""Friends Forever" CD Review"

Every now and then an album you hear will grab your attention in such a unique way that you immediately tell everyone you know and you don’t let up until you’ve spread the good word. That’s how Balacade’s 2009 release, Friends Forever makes you feel. From a band that has toured across Canada, put out several albums, singles and a 7”, had a number one album on Victoria’s radio station CFUV, and whose influences are Mt. Eerie, Built to Spill and Neil Young, you couldn’t really expect anything less than quality musicianship.

The title track captures listeners’ attention with an amazingly close replica of Thom Yorke’s vocals. Balacade is fronted by Andrew Reynolds, who seems to be summoning the powers of Apollo, god of music, to entice you into listening to the remainder of Friends Forever. With lyrics like “There are walls that we build up / Just to tear down,” and “Did you ever see a dead dog / Lying on the road?” Apollo owns you and so will this album for the entire, too short, 20 minutes that it endures.

The EP sounds like a bomb of glitter in a Manitoba wind storm collided with a Korg and a violinist in concerto. The aforementioned uncanny sound of Reynolds’ voice turns into a faint whisper amidst electronic keyboard melodies and dusty percussion in the second track “Everything.” The high point of Friends Forever is arguably “Partition Magic,” an acoustic and soulful piece by Reynolds.

Lo-fi harmonies and melodies that sound like something from a state fair, matched with distorted electronics and subtle folk vocals makes Balacade a band worth boasting about. Friends Forever take it’s listeners through a cascade of feelings that would otherwise require an old cinema to bring into existence.

by: Sarah Charrouf
- Discorder Magazine

"another "Friends Forever" CD Review"

One of the best little DIY labels that almost no one talks about is Victoria’s Old Life Records. I’m already gushed about Colourbook and Almonds, Cohen but up until a week or so ago, I’d never heard of Balacade. Their debut EP - Friends Forever - is a really interesting mix of electronics, weary vocals and Beachouse-y textures and mood.

You fall into the folds of these songs without even noticing and every listen exposes subtle wrinkles that catch your ear and touch on another influence that drives Andrew Reynolds' song writing process. The EP starts with the beautiful distorted, electro folk of (Ghost Car). The harmonies, loops and countless textures mesh perfectly and the lo-fi recording blossoms in front of you like one of those old stock footage, slow motion films. That vibe continues on the washed out, (mostly) instrumental Everything.

It's obvious the duo can craft gentle wave like lo-fi tracks, but what makes this EP work is how they break up the listen at just the right time. After two blissful tracks, they change pace with the crazy, banged out pump organ-ish carnival ready pop of Dead Dog and the distorted notes of an electric, Andrew’s vocals and little else on the surprisingly engaging Partition Magic. This subtle change of pace lets Balacade return to the slow moving textures they do so well, but doesn't leave you feeling like you sat through 20 minutes of the same, lo-fi sounds and you easily settle back into the pleasant mood and tones of Roman Candle and Surf City.

- Herohill (music website)


"The Space Dog E.P." (2007)
"Sundown Morning" (2008) #1 on CFUV Victoria for a month.
"Friends Forever" (2009) #2 on CFUV and CJSW #21 on CKXU, frequent plays on CFBX.



I formed Balacade in 2005. Originally in Vancouver BC, but i very quickly moved back to Victoria. I like it here, and there is a pretty good music scene. Lots of talented musician friends live here and we all help each other out. Some of us started a label to put out CDR's and small run 7"s called Old Life Records. it sort of fell apart recently due to people moving away, but that's how small towns work. I have played lots of shows around here, and toured once over to Saskatchewan. I've played on the radio here a few times and my CD's have received lots of airplay on CFUV, and Calgary's CJSW. I just mailed out copies of my newest CD "Friends Forever" and its starting to get some airplay in Calgary and a few other places. As well as a couple of really nice reviews. This past October i went to Montreal and played at the Pop Montreal Festival, and a few weeks ago i opened for Casiotone For The Painfully Alone here in a church in front of about 125 people. It was great except the mic cut out halfway thru my 2nd song. so i just wheeled out the grand piano they had at stage left and played and sang on that until they fixed the mic! I am hoping to tour this spring again and play Sled Island. Which would be awesome!