Cinéma Vérité
Gig Seeker Pro

Cinéma Vérité

Toronto, Ontario, Canada | INDIE

Toronto, Ontario, Canada | INDIE
Band Alternative Pop


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



"Cinéma Vérité: "London""

Splashes of ambient, experimental electronica and dream-pop appear on Cinéma Vérité's tour EP Postcards. So many good tracks to chose from on this release, but "London" really encapsulates the mood and simplistic quality of Canadian duo Zachary Gray and Guillaume Harvey's music. Their debut album Perfect Day drops this summer on Le Grand Magistery.

For fans of The Radio Dept., Animal Collective and Montag. Download/Stream the entire EP at the band's Bandcamp page ( - Surfing on Steam

"Cinéma Vérité – tour EP ‘Postcards’"

Cinéma Vérité is a two-piece Canadian group based out of the Montreal/Toronto area who have recently been signed to Le Grand Magistery and plan to release their first album Perfect Day sometime this summer. They’ve got a slight 80’s flare to their more poppy tunes (who doesn’t these days though right?), but there are songs like “Fireworks” that showcase Cinéma Vérité’s unique blend of acoustic-pop and electronic soundscapes. Their tour ep Postcards is a collection of songs from the Perfect Day sessions that we can enjoy until the album is released, with some exclusive songs that didn’t make the final cut. You can purchase Postcards here ( - New Dust

"And now, our feature presentation..."

Cinéma Vérité ditch long-distance music collaboration for real deal.


Before forming Cinéma Vérité, the two bandmates were engaged in a long-distance musical relationship.

Zachary Gray, a Ryerson image arts film studies graduate, and Guillaume Harvey met in 2003, during their first year at Concordia University, where they both majored in film.

Harvey said they both clicked because they had a lot in common, particularly music tastes.

“We were both into ’90s bands like Smashing Pumpkins, as well as other indie bands that were big at the time,” Harvey said. “But Zach knew a lot about music and introduced me to some good bands I never heard about.”

Both from musical backgrounds, the pair connected in class, where the musical duo scored each other’s film projects. Together they pitched in for other students, as well.

Following first year, however, Gray moved to Toronto to continue film studies at Ryerson.

“I wasn’t really into the Concordia program because it was a lot of theory,” said the Waterloo native. “I wanted more hands-on experience with film, because reading about it really didn’t interest me, so I came to Ryerson because it offered that.”

Gray took an interest in scoring films for his classmates here too, and gained a reputation as a quality music maker with his Ryerson peers.

He soon realized a career in music would be more personally fulfilling than a career in film. Gray and Harvey continued to collaborate on these projects, but due to the distance, they did so online.

They would upload tracks on each other’s servers and layer each song with the lyrics and instrumentals until they were happy with the final result.

Ben Edelberg, a Ryerson film studies graduate and Gray’s former classmate, said Gray scored the music for his final film thesis.

Working with someone who knew both film and music inside and out made the project a breeze, he said.

“When we worked together he was always really calm, never lost his cool and followed direction well, which is beneficial to any filmmaker,” he said.

Gray started to become more serious about launching a music career two years ago and released a solo EP, catching the ears of executives at Chicago-based label Le Grand Magistery.

The band officially came into being when they asked him if he would be interested in releasing an album of the songs he co-wrote with Harvey.

The pair decided on the name Cinéma Vérité as a way to pay homage to their filmmaking roots.

Their first album is set to be released this summer, but they already started touring with a five-piece live band, with Gray on vocals and Harvey on the guitar.

You can catch Cinéma Vérité at the Gladstone Hotel Thursday. - Ryersonian

"Reel time"

Cinéma Verité splice soundtracks with pop songs


“I started writing music for film before I started writing pop songs,” says Zachary Gray, the Ontario-based half of the Montreal/Toronto duo known as Cinéma Verité. Next spring, their debut album will emerge via Chicago indie label Le Grand Magistery (which released the very first EPs and debut album by Stars), bearing influences from the big screen and from likeminded sonic craftsmen such as Deerhunter, Animal Collective, Jim O’Rourke and Daniel Lanois.

“The forthcoming LP is a mixture of both pop songs and ambient experimental instrumental tracks that link them together. It kind of plays out like a mixtape with transition pieces—that’s something that’s very important to us.”

Gray met Guillaume Harvey in 2003, in a Concordia film class (History of Film to 1959, specifically), and although they soon took separate paths to their degrees—Gray to film production at Ryerson, Harvey to screenwriting at UQÀM—a long-distance songwriting relationship was forged, and a link to the project’s origins retained with an appropriately cinematic and bilingual band name.

“We discovered our love for music during the film class,” explains Gray, whose program switch also proved key to Cinéma Verité.

“I became less interested in making films and more interested in sound design and score work for film, so I started scoring my classmates’ films for credit,” he says. “I’d say about 60 per cent of the record was originally partial film scores that I ended up turning into pop songs, reshaping them and rearranging them.”

Though still separated by 600 kilometres, Gray and Harvey have accelerated their project over the past year, meeting more frequently and developing a live show with Toronto musicians Christopher John Butcher (drums), Anu Jindal (guitar) and Tristan Johnston (bass), all of whom played with Gray as part of a solo project that became fused with Cinéma Verité. This weekend’s performance is only their second, and fittingly, projections combining paint on film and documentary footage will be in effect, care of a Toronto artist tapping her Bosnian roots.

“She went to Bosnia a few summers ago and shot a lot of 16mm footage of the surroundings and the people that she met along her way. So in a way, this is going to be a version of what cinéma verité really is.” - Montreal Mirror


Release: Sunrise, Sunset
Label: Le Grand Magistery
Date: October 2010

Release: Sunrise, Sunset Revisited
Label: Lebanon, Mass.
Date: October 2010

Release: A Very Magistery Summer (Various)
Song: "Icelandic Summer"
Label: Le Grand Magistery
Date: June 2010

Release: Postcards - Winter 09/10 Tour EP
Label: Lebanon, Mass.
Date: December 22, 2010



Like the Beach Boys in a colder climate, Cinéma Vérité was started in 2008 by Anglo-Torontonian Zachary Gray and Franco-Montrealer Guillaume Harvey. Having met in the back row of Concordia University film classes, Gray and Harvey began a long-distance song-writing relationship after Gray moved to Toronto to major in film at Ryerson University.

Signed to Le Grand Magistery in 2010 (best known as Stars’ former label), Cinéma Vérité will be releasing their debut album, “Sunrise, Sunset”, this September. With their background in film studies, Cinéma Vérité creates music that is as much atmospheric soundscape as it is catchy-as-hell pop. "Sunrise, Sunset" is a bittersweet gut-ache of heartbreak hangovers and morning-after melodic bliss. It is both moody as hell, and simply sincere. Gray’s lyrics are crystalline and pure, like the memories that play over and over in your head when you’re homesick, like rousing up from a drunk-dry sleep to sober-ecstatic revelation. Harvey’s guitar riffs, spinning out and rolling in, soaked in home-style acoustic pop, are hung out to dry in electronic ephemera. You walk with it and it takes you home. “Sunrise, Sunset” also features two remixes of the song "Perfect Day" by Canadian electo acts vitaminsforyou and Montag.

Cinéma Vérité tours with a 5-piece live band, with Gray on laptop and vocals, and Harvey on guitar. The band rounds out with Toronto musicians Christopher John Butcher on drums, Anu Jindal on guitar, and Tristan Johnston on bass. They played their first show at the Smiling Buddha Bar in Toronto in October, and followed up with a show in Montréal with local darling and electronica idol Montag at bar Casa del Popolo in December. In February, Cinéma Vérité played a Le Grand Magistery showcase with label mates Idle Tigers and Scarboro Aquarium Club at the Drake Hotel in Toronto. The band is currently planning a free nation-wide Icelandic Tour, which they will embark on if accepted into Iceland Airwaves, this October.

Their debut single, "Icelandic Summer", will be featured on the upcoming Le Grand Magistery compilation, “A Very Magistery Summer”, followed by their debut LP "Sunrise, Sunset" this September.