Edgar Breau
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Edgar Breau

Hamilton, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2015 | INDIE | AFM

Hamilton, Ontario, Canada | INDIE | AFM
Established on Jan, 2015
Band Folk Roots

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This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Jul
09
Edgar Breau @ Relish Bar and Grill

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Apr
23
Edgar Breau @ Artword Artbar

Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

Aug
30
Edgar Breau @ The Outpost

Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

Music

Press


Edgar Breau has released a new album called, Patches of blue. He is the former front man of widely acclaimed Canadian band Simply Saucer. His new record is very Nick Cave, Mazzy Star, or Belly with a smooth yet wavering voice accompanied by female vocals and intricate finger style guitar that’s almost country. The album has 12 songs and can be purchased and previewed here. Below is his video for the album’s title track “Patches of Blue.”

Like him on facebook.

- Sergeant Sparrow, New Music, Art and Literature


Edgar Breau - Patches of Blue (CD, Flying Inn Recordings, Folky soft pop)
As soon as we heard the lead track on this album ("Patches of Blue") we were immediately reminded of babysue favorite Roy Harper. Canada's Edgar Breau has a wonderful resonant voice that is surprisingly similar to the classic British songsmith. As we listened further we were even more intrigued by the fact that the songs are also in the same general vein. Up to this point Breau is best known as a member of the band Simply Saucer (he is still a member). In order to offer a different side of his musical personality, Edgar recorded these smart pensive songs that combine elements of folk, pop, and rock. The arrangements are basic and to-the-point...and those smooth velvety vocals are the obvious centerpiece. Patches of Blue is a very consistent album as each and every one of these twelve tracks has something credible to offer. Our initial favorites include "Open Road," "Cry Bitter Rain," and "Dandelion Kingdom."

- Babysue musiczine out of Chattanooga TN U.S.A. Feb. 2012


Saturday, January 28, 2012




Edgar Breau "Patches of Blue"
(Flying Inn Music) The guitarist from less-obscure-than-they-used-to-be Canadian psyche punk band Simply Saucer releases an album of heartfelt, working class singer-songwriter music that may take Saucer fans for an unexpected abduction. Actually, psyche fans have been pretty liberal with guitar strumming coffehouse-types over the last few years, generously labeling anything traditional and strummy as "freak folk," and the richness and atmospheric vibe here might allow this to fit the bill as well. But what's going on here is more than genre work or gear shifting, it's some genuinely intense, sincere troubadour-ism, telling tales and meaning them. Not that the tales of cyborgs and mole machines in the 70s weren't sincere!


Posted by Roctober Magazine Reviews: at 6:22 AM - Roktober Chicago IL U.S.A. Jan. 2012


Edgar Breau finds his blue period
by Graham Rockingham

Edgar Breau Simply Saucer founder Edgar Breau has a new solo CD, Patches of Blue. The Hamilton singer-songwriter will debut the new songs at a CD release party Sunday, March 18, at This Ain't Hollywood. /Special to The Spectator
We’ve learned to expect the unexpected from Edgar Breau. The Hamilton singer-songwriter is best known as the founder of Simply Saucer, Canada’s most fabled protopunk band.
With Simply Saucer, Breau forged an early ’70s sound that blended MC5 mania with Syd Barrett quirkiness and the Velvet Underground artful ambition. It was searing to the ears and so ahead of its time that Simply Saucer wasn’t really discovered until the late ’90s when its Cyborgs Revisited achieved cultlike status among collectors.
Just as Saucer was being proclaimed by critics as one of the greatest bands to ever emerge from the Canadian underground, Breau was quietly redefining himself as a singer-songwriter in the style of Bob Dylan with his first solo album, Canadian Primitive.
Breau’s new CD, Patches of Blue, throws any remaining preconceptions out the window.
Assisted by some of the city’s top session musicians and the brilliant production of Michael Birthelmer, Patches of Blue bounces from Bacharach pop to sensual bossa nova to wailing blues, uptown funk and Appalachian bluegrass with a dexterity that makes it all seem so … um … normal. And cool, very cool.
“It’s a different musical muse,” Breau says with quiet understatement. “It’s a genre-hopping record.”
Over a period of four years, Breau brought more than 20 new songs to Birthelmer’s studios, first on Chatham Street, and then, when he moved, on Pine Street. Together they whittled the selections down to 12 and mapped out the direction each would take.
“Originally I was going to do just a solo acoustic, live-off-the-floor record when I first went to the studio,” Breau says. “But Mike heard all these things in the songs. He’d say, ‘Edgar, that’s got a bossa nova rhythm,’ and he’d tell me to listen to (Brazilian songwriter) Antonio Jobim. I was fortunate because Mike is a fine songwriter himself. Mike is connected and he knew some great people to bring into the studio. It was fun working with them.”
The recording sessions gelled when local singers Mike Trebilcock and Colina Philips were brought in to add backing vocals. Trebilcock is a respected singer-songwriter with a Juno to his credit for his work with The Killjoys, while Philips had worked with A-list artists like Anne Murray, Bryan Adams, Bruce Cockburn and Alice Cooper. As a member of the vocal trio Shay, Philips won a Juno in 1987.
“When Colina came into the studio, she really liked the songs, saw them as unique,” Breau says. “She would go home and work out all the parts, her own harmonies. She always surprised us when she came back into the studio. We were pretty dazzled. She’s such a pro.”
Trickbag drummer Paul Panchezak and Saucer bassist Kevin Christoff anchored the rhythm section through most of the tracks, with Ed Roth handling keyboards.
When the songs pushed in a traditional country direction, Virgina native Joe Clark, who cut his teeth as a kid playing with Bill Monroe, was brought on fiddle, mandolin and banjo. For the bluesy Cry Bitter Rain, Brian Griffith added a blistering guitar solo.
The end result is an extraordinary multitextured album that provides a showcase for the talents of an elite squad of Hamilton musicians as well as Breau’s always-interesting songwriting talents. Patches of Blue is already starting to gain attention by critics across the country, including CBC’s Bob Mersereau, author of the Top 100 Canadian Albums and the Top 100 Canadian Singles.
“We had the songs and we went out looking for the right people to play that kind of music, people who were conversant with that style,” says Breau. “I think it came out really well. We had world-class musicians playing on it.”
- The Hamilton Spectator, Wed. March 14, 2012



Edgar Breau is the frontman for the legendary Cult band Simply Saucer! There album (both on Vinyl and eventually on CD) "Cyborgs Revisited" its considered one of the great lost classics! High praise has come from all around the Globe including UNCUT, MOJO,Village Voice, Creem and The London times to name but a few. "It was deemed bona fide proto-Punk Classic"! (This is from the bio) - It was voted the 36th best Canadian album in Bob Mersereau's 2007 book The Top 100 Canadian Albums.

Now Edgar has just released his long waited and much anticipated album "Patches of Blue" which has instantly become a new favorite of mine and a welcome reminder that real music and art is still alive and kicking! Here is my recent interview with Edgar - Enjoy!











Punk Globe:
Since Simply Saucer reformed in 2004 tell us what the band has been up to since then? What are the future plans for the band?


Edgar Breau:
The band reformed with original members Edgar Breau (me) and Kevin Christoff with the addition of Joe Csontos on drums (Forgotten Rebels), Steve Foster on guitar (Stoked, Crawling Kingsnakes) and Dan Wintermans on guitar and theremin (Headphone Overtone). We gigged in Hamilton, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal and were then invited by New Jersey super Internet station WFMU to play at Southpaws in Brooklyn NY as part of a concert series with Oneida and Suicide. We also gigged in Detroit, Chicago and Louisville KY at the Terrastock Festival, did the SCION Garage Fest in Portland OR. In 2008 we recorded at Catherine North Studios in Hamilton a new CD called Half Human Half Live. We did a private live concert in the studios which was recorded, some of which made it onto the CD, and also recorded six studio songs. It was released on Sonic Unyon Records. This past summer we returned to the U.S. to play the fabled Beachlands Ballroom in Cleveland, home of our rust belt counterparts, Rocket from the Tombs and Pere Ubu. On the bill was Detroit's Rocket 455, who had been influenced by our sound as well as MC5 and the Stooges. They are a great bandl We drove back up to De$oit where we played an outdoor show in New Centre Park with our friends and then the next day went up to Jim Diamond's Studio just around the corner from Ford Stadium where we recorded 5 songs for our new release. The White Stripes have recorded there it's a cool place in an old funky tenement building, analogue tape, fabulous gear. Joining us on the recording was Motown legend, the composer, arranger, keyboard player and trombonist, McKinley Jackson who played the 83 organ on our tunes as well as the Fender Rhodes piano. Mckinley has performed with Smokey Robinson, Dionne Warwick, John Lee Hooker, Jimmie Reed and was the musical director for Marvin Gaye's last tour. He is a great musician to work with and it was a real honor to have him on our recording. The band will be finishing up the album here in Hamilton at Napier Park Studios. As well a new lo-fi recording of live rarities on vinyl called Saucerland is coming out on a Chicago label this year.







Punk Globe:
Your new solo CD "Patches of Blue" is your 2nd and first fully realized solo studio effort. Tell us about the recording process of this new release and the musicians who came on board to accompany you on this wonderful new album?


Edgar Breau:
The title track, Patches of Blue attempts to evoke moods of romantic love, obsession, mixed with ennui, dark apocalyptic foreboding embodied in imagery from nature Open Road, is a recent soul pop number that is about breaking free from a destructive relationship, the key line is ' now I'm feeling strong enough, acting out tough out on the Open Road..it's a bout a person, who has taken a lot of shit, passively, getting up the courage to leave Rainmakin' Man was inspired by a trip to Cape Cod a few summers ago and a voyage on a schooner. Pennsylvania I'd been down there had emotional ties, got the atlas out explored the geography let the imagination take over One Kind of Love was a sort of reply to Lou Reed's Velvets' Some Kind of Love, it goes back to the early nineties Maria the Sea and the Sun musically was inspired by the great Brazilian guitar player, Bola Sete Cry Bitter Rain I had been performing live with my own band, it's about love and abuse. Girl on a Carousel, my bossa nova song goes back to the eighties, i lost track of it and then re worked it for the recording. Dreams of Kerouac was inspired by my cross Canada hitchikin'experiences and a stay in Winnipeg Simcoe County Country Girl's origins go back to early Simply Saucer where a version of it was learned by the band and performed at our now notorious Jackson Sq. mall show where the live side of Cyborgs Revisited was recorded. She love me like a Train I wanted something with the simplicity of a Cash song or an Elvis ballad Dandelion Kingdom is a song evoking childhood memory in a weird tuning, a bit of Syd Barrett, Ray Davies influence coming out.. - Punk Globe Interview by Jeff Liberty



If you’re a fan of Canada’s Simply Saucer, you’re going to be a very happy camper with today’s New Music Fridays post.

Now, if you’re asking yourself, “Simply Saucer? Huh?” I won’t go into all the nitty gritty details of this fascinating tale of a band that has influenced so many music-types around the globe yet still remains largely unknown to the general public. I suggest you head over and check out this great article at Perfect Sound Forever that does a far better job than I ever could explaining the history and significance of Simply Saucer.

For now, though, feast your ears on the newest offering from Saucer frontman Edgar Breau, Patches of Blue. This brand new collection of songs is a bit of a departure from the Simply Saucer sound, with a heavy emphasis on tunes built from the acoustic guitar on up. Truth be known, I’ve had the title track from Patches of Blue on a loop in my house all day today, and I still can’t get enough of it. You can stream the album at Breau’s website, although I suggest you just cut to the chase and buy it on iTunes.

Here’s the video for the title track, Patches of Blue.



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One of the great unsung Canadian bands was Simply Saucer, a proto-punk-slash-psych band from Hamilton that was around in the late 70s. But once the band dissolved, singer and guitarist Edgar Breau sold all his electric gear and became besotted with the possibilities of acoustic music.

Simply Saucer is still active after a reunion about a decade ago but Edgar has continued to explore his acoustic muse. Next month, he'll release Patches of Blue on a label called Flying Inn Recordings. Please give this a listen.

<a href="http://edgarbreau.bandcamp.com/album/patches-of-blue-preview">Patches Of Blue Preview by Edgar Breau</a>
- A Journal of Musical Things


MUSIC REVIEW OF THE DAY: EDGAR BREAU - PATCHES OF BLUE

One of the great surprises when I wrote the book The Top 100 Canadian Albums in 2007 was the appearance of the band Simply Saucers, and their album Cyborgs Revisited. The 70's group from Hamilton hadn't even released that work during their initial existance; instead, it was a cult phenomenon, a product of super fans and super sleuthing, tapes rediscovered and a whole new generation of alternative fans discovering the work, and declaring it a major find, filling in the blank spots between Velvets, art rock, proto-punk and prog. All of a sudden the group had a following, a documentary crew on their trail, reunion shows, new music and more notoriety than they'd ever enjoyed before, with major praise coming from leading mags all over the globe.

This left leader Edgar Breau in a dilemma. A reluctant participant in the music world since the '70's split of the group, when he did play and record, it was acoustic music, far more folk than any of the above genres. He'd also abandoned even that for long periods, working with wood rather than playing with it. But he gamely put the band back together, and that inevitably sparked the other side of his muse as well.

That takes us to this long-in-the-making project, as Breau takes another trip in the less noisy and spacey world. While there are lots of acoustic sounds about, you could never pigeonhole Patches Of Blue into one easy slot in the iTunes store. There's blues, ballads, folk, a little funky-dance stuff, you name it, he'll try it. Breau is a chameleon, who goes where the lyrics take him, and if he writes a line like "She says my sweet darling, I wanna have your baby,", well he's going to turn that puppy onto a disco beat. Of course, that all fits into the outsider vibe the album carries. Breau's whimsical side sees him la-la-la his way through a dandelion kingdom riding on a donkey, child-like and innocent, except for that well-traveled raspiness in his vocals. Girl On A Carousel sees him step back to latin-tinged 60's breeziness, something from a Parisienne new wave film perhaps, Lee Hazlewood taking Astrud Gilberto out for a date. Open Road is a soulful, bouncy, full band production, one of several that features gorgeous, full vocals from accomplished session singer Colina Phillips, really a co-singer here and on others. The contrasting vocal quality is one of the joys of the album, Dylan vs. Baez if you will.

The back-and-forth is another strength for the disc, with sparse acoustic numbers following big bright ones. It's on these quieter ones where Breau's lyrical skills become more apparent, with familiar blues themes of lovers and trains and travel getting new twists, with words such as esplanade and expeditiously flowing at you, in a British, poetic ambiance. And then, there's "It'll give you satisfaction when your baby shakes some action."

This type of unique bard-like character usually does pop up from England, be it Andy Partridge or Robyn Hitchcock, people with a flair for language and a broad range of musical interests. Breau might be able to make some Dickensonian comparisons to his east end Hamilton roots, but I think its more the case of the strangest career in Canadian music continuing to give us great surprises.
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Revelation Rock
Three decades after his band’s first record, Simply Saucer frontman Edgar Breau is still out there
By James Tennant

They have been called “pioneers” and “as quintessentially Canadian as Medicare and street hockey.” Their first album has been hailed as one of the best Canadian releases in history. And you probably haven’t heard of them. The band is Simply Saucer, and by rights, they should have been lost forever, buried in the gritty depths of Hamilton’s music history. Formed on the fringes of the scene, Simply Saucer garnered no critical praise until a decade after they broke up. This is their story, a story as anomalous as their sound.

In the late ’60s and early ’70s, mainstream music had become relatively friendly. Yet on the outer planets, rock ’n’ roll seethed, mutating into new, edgier forms. The Warhol-inspired aesthetic of the Velvet Underground, the raw power of the Stooges and the psychedelic space rock of early Pink Floyd thrilled critics and inspired other musicians. At the same time, they could not compete with radio’s more accessible sounds.

These were the types of artists that inspired Simply Saucer. Yet if Lou Reed couldn’t reach a wider audience in New York, what chance did Simply Saucer have in Hamilton? Ahead of their time, Simply Saucer would have to wait for time to catch up – which would take over 20 years.

Simply Saucer was helmed by Edgar Breau, whose sojourn into the fringes of modern music began early. He began with country, Elvis, the Beatles; when he learned to play guitar in his youth, he picked away at songs by Gordon Lightfoot and, later, The Kinks’ Ray Davies. As he grew up, he soaked himself in British psychedelia from Pink Floyd to the Soft Machine. He dipped a toe in the Pacific with Moby Grape and the Grateful Dead. He revelled in the disjointed genius of Captain Beefheart and the hypnotic racket of German bands like Can and Amon Düül. Record geeks in London and New York could just hit their respective Sohos to find these albums. In the Hammer, however, such music could only be had via special order. These special orders were stock in trade at Bob Moody’s Record Bar on John Street North, where Breau loitered and made friends with other local rock intelligentsia.

“We used to get together and have record spinoffs,” Breau recalls. “We’d get a bottle of wine and rate records on originality and all kinds of categories. We had fun like that.” Inspired by the rock counterculture, as well as authors such as Kerouac and Wolfe, Breau and a friend headed west in 1972. They thumbed down highways and panhandled for change; Breau returned to Hamilton in the fall, a changed young man. “There was a creek at King and Quigley,” he recalls. “I tossed all the books in the creek and that was it for schooling. I went right into putting this band together.”

From various corners of the Record Bar, Breau gathered people to help him release the sounds that circled in his head. It began with friend Paul Callili and, one by one, other likeminded musicians came on board – Dave Byers, Kevin Christoff, Neil DeMerchant, Breau’s foster brother John LaPlante.

In an upstairs apartment not far from Moody’s, this unlikely sextet set about making a racket that most Hamiltonians would never understand. LaPlante adopted the mysterious moniker Ping Romany; he twisted knobs on oscillators and early synthesizers, creating spacey sounds inspired by Hawkwind, Sun Ra and Karlheinz Stockhausen. The band maintained the Velvets’ cool, the Stooges’ power and Floyd’s sonic expanse. They also maintained their distance from Hamilton’s other bands, who were happy playing cover tunes in local bars. “We were pretty hostile towards what was going on in town,” Breau says. “Full of piss and vinegar and almost contentious. Hamilton wasn’t exactly a thriving artistic mecca in the ’70s.”

The refusenik attitude landed the band no gigs, but for a time, that was fine. They were content, rather, to turn up the feedback, leave the apartment and see how far away they could hear the noise (as it turned out, James Street). The lack of forward motion, however, eventually tired some members. Callili departed for college, Byers simply departed and the rest of the band relocated to a grungy storefront rehearsal space over at 220 1/2 Kenilworth Avenue North.

Though they had never played a show, word of Simply Saucer reached the ears of Rick Bissell, a transplanted Montrealer, who offered to manage the band. He booked their first unlikely performance – in the basement of St. Alban’s Anglican Church.

“It was east end neighbourhood kids that came out to see us,” says Breau. Those east end kids, however, were not prepared for DeMerchant’s violin (which he really couldn’t play), Breau’s cacophonous audio generators or the performance of an hour-long piece aptly entitled “Noise.” Fights broke out. The authorities were involved. A defining statement was made.

Despite the dubious nature of their first - Hamilton Magazine


what was the first music that got you excited?
My sisters used to dance to Elvis Presley '78's, Jerry Lee Lewis, Hank Williams, Marty Robbins, my father liked Hank Snow, Jim Reeves, Italian Opera (from his wartime experiences on the Italian front), my aunt Sharon turned me on to the Big O, Roy Orbison, sister Maureen to the pre British invasion American bandstand acts. I liked all of that incl. Gene Pitney, Dell Shannon, Freddie Cannon. Then the Stones, Beatles, Kinks, Byrds came along and blew me away.

tell me a little about pre-saucer band the shangs, and how they morphed into simply saucer.
Actually, the Shangs are an excellent post Saucer band put together in the early nineties by David Byers who had played in the proto Saucer six piece band circa '72-'73. The original six piece Simply Saucer played in a more free form, improvisational style. We were loud and noisy using audio generators, theremins, a treated saxophone, and keyboards to create musical mayhem. Later on I channeled the improvised bits into song structures and thus was born the Saucer sound.

how was imants krumins the sort of 'svengali" of the hamilton psych-punk scene?
Imants was there from start to finish, driving us and many other band members to concerts, record stores, providing us with a running commentary on all the latest happenings in the psyche punk world, filling rooms and rooms with recordings. He is still at it..

i know "mole machine" is a fantatsic four reference--any other comic book allusions in SS songs?
Can't think of any off hand, we were reading a lot of Silver Surfer, Dr. Strange, Fantastic Four, going to sci-fi B movies like Angry Red Planet, circulating fantasy/sci-fi novels like David Lindsay's cult classic A Vogage to Arcturus, William Hope Hodgson's Nightland, E.R.R. Eddison, H.P. Lovecraft and a host of others. There were Dali books, the surrealists as well as Golden Dawn lit by Arthur e Waite, some esoteric writings by Louis Claude de St. Martin that kind of stuff.

when you produced the SS stuff, i read you brought in pink fairies and velvets records into the studio to try and get that sound...what else did you bring?
Raw Power and White Light/White Heat, I wasn't too sure that the Lanois brothers (Dan and Bob) had recorded music like ours. I didn't want them cleaning up our sound.

Ping seemed to show the immediate influence of Eno in roxy music--was this his inspiration? where is he now?
Ping was influenced greatly by Eno both in and out of Roxy Music.Hawkwind's (was it Dikmik?) and Kraftwerk as well. He used to give me money to buy him records on my forays into Toronto and Buffalo and I would return with stacks of Sun Ra and Stockhausen recordings. He learned quickly and soon developed his talent into something very special.

was "illegal bodies" a song that grew to such epic lengths or was it always a 8 plus minute barnstormer?
No the intent was always the epic length. I brought the song to the band in sections within which there was a lot of room for improvisation. I wanted to write something along the lines of the Velvet Underground's Sister Ray and European Son. Short lines which in retrospect were kind of Dylanesque and then the long explorative instrumental followed which was always different and over the top.

up til recently had SS ever played outside of hamilton? like toronto even?
Oh yeah, we were part of the Toronto Queen st. scene in '77 to '79 and had played in towns like Smith Falls, Carlton Place, St. Catherines earlier. Not until 2007 did we play the U.S.


what do you think of the rabid US/europe following SS has?
It's great to be appreciated and the fans have been phenomenal!

a lot of folks don't know you also play solo in the sort of "american (canadian?) primitive" template laid down by john fahey--how did this start?
During my days with Simply Saucer I had collected truck loads of recordings by people like John Fahey, Robbie Basho, Lightnin' Hopkins, the British folk acts like Pentangle, Nick Drake, Dando Shaft, the Incredible String Band and those artists who were basically songwriting geniuses like Syd Barrett, Kevin Ayers and so in the dying days of the band I decided to detune my guitar and begin experimenting with open tunings and fingerstyle playing. Somehow I knew that I was very liable to be in the wilderness (figuratively speaking) for a few years having really played for keeps with Simply Saucer and having it crash and burn like it did. I decided to keep alive musically by learning to play acoustically. I purchased a Laskin guitar which turned out to be a very wise investment as the luthier who built my guitar went on to international fame. His guitars are now in the Canadian Museum of Civilization in Ottawa and very expensive. Anyhow the troubadour thing appealed to me anyways as I had grown up listening to Dylan, Gordon Lightfoot, Tim Hardin, Fred Neil, Ray Davies, had a love of Mississippi John Hurt, Bukka White people like that. So it w - Anthology


Culture

March 06, 2005
Pop: New Releases: Simply Saucer: Cyborgs Revisited
STEWART LEE


SIMPLY SAUCER

Cyborgs Revisited

Sonic Unyon SUNCD097


This collection of Simply Saucer’s 1974 recordings represents that rare thing among rarities: an album nobody could reasonably be expected to have heard of that will soon become a touchstone for out-there musicians. Operating in the twin cultural wastelands of the mid-1970s and Hamilton, Ontario, Simply Saucer drew on the weirdest 1960s influences (the Stooges, Velvet Underground, Krautrock and Syd Barrett) to prefigure the finest noise-makers of the punk and post-punk eras. Fans of Sonic Youth, the Flaming Lips or the Dead C will hear their favourites foreshadowed here. Low Profile could have come off the Fall’s brilliant 1978 debut, Live at the Witch Trials.


Four stars - England's London Sunday Times


Simply Saucer
Cyborgs Revisited

For me, one of rock 'n' roll's most intense and fascinating periods was the proto-punk bridge between the last days of Lou's Velvet Underground and the Stooges and the beginnings of the next wave with Verlaine/Hell's Television, the brothers Ramone and so-on. Underground denizens like the
Electric Eels, Debris, Ubu, Chrome, Von Lmo, Crime, Novak - not forgetting France's Metal Urbain - still play my spine like a zither and still receive regular needletime - I mean, have you played 'Static Disposal' by Debris lately? What could be better? Well, Ontario's Simply Saucer come incredibly
close - a matter of microns apart I guess. Yet they never released anything during that time, save an unrepresentative single ('She's a Dog') in 1978 and by then it was a different line-up, made over for punkier times. Partly produced by the Lanois Brothers, 'Cyborgs Revisited' saw its first issue in
1989 in a punishingly limited number on the Mole Sound Recording label, which received as I recall much raving and drooling from some of 'zineworld's finest. Small wonder - this retrospective collection of mid-70s material was, is and ever shall be a stone classic.

Imagine bandleader Edgar Breau as a Lou Reedish figure, laconic sprechsang and ennui in full bloom, weaned on the works of Philip K. Dick 'stead of NY scuzz and Sacher-Masoch, his blazing fuzz-wah guitar showing some kinda deference to krautrocked shapes, Hawkwind and possibly Fripp. These whacked-out lines are stolidly supported by Kevin Christoff on bass and Neil de Marchant's/Tony Cutaia's Mo Tuckeresque drum pulse. The X-factor though which separates these boys from the pack was the electronics of Ping Romany (aka John La Plante) - so doggedly anti-musical it's like hearing something we all thirsted for; Eno with all of his 'Oblique Strategies' letting rip with a hard rock/psych combo like the Pink Fairies, or Mr. Ra sitting in with 'High Time'-era MC5. Even now only Ubu's Allen Ravenstine can hold a candle to Ping.

Full marks to Sonic Unyon for their research into the band's somewhat shadowy six-year span. One minor gripe though is that there's no lyric sheet! Aaagh! I would have loved to have scanned Edgar's words - what strands I can glean from 'Instant Pleasure' and 'Dance the Mutuation' offer tantalising views into some decadent/dehumanized futureworld - the next planetoid to Chrome's at a guess - they had their androids ('Slip it to the Android') and Saucer had their cyborgs. By the by - this is the third issue, as a Fistpuppet Records CD emerged/vanished in the mid-90s and is probably as collectible as the vinyl. But, this offers far more - 9 extras to be precise: demos/live tracks and both sides of the seven-inch.

"Woo woo this is AMAZING!" screamed a helpful Post-it note attached to the front of the review copy by our esteemed Editor. Indeed it is - and it'd be a burning shame if you missed it's third approach. Nab this and discover that my hyperbole was fully justified.
(Sonic Unyon, sonicunyon.com)

-Steve Pescott - England's Terrascope


Edgar Breau
Canadian Primitive
(Songhammer/Sonic Unyon)

Simply Saucer dude dazzles on this mainly acoustic outing.
8/10
(Jonathan Cummins)

Montreal Mirror, Montreal QC, 11/04/04




- Montreal Mirror


Simply Saucer Re-Revisited: Our Own Velvet Underground
Wednesday April 09, 2008 @ 04:30 PM
By: ChartAttack.com Staff

By James Tennant

For those who haven't heard the stories, Hamilton's Simply Saucer were a band well ahead of their time. Their influences are well-known to the common hipster, but still unknown to most everyone else: Kraut-rock, The Velvet Underground, Syd Barrett, Pink Fairies, The Stooges, Sun Ra and so on into '60s and '70s obscurities. Saucer swirled them all together in a sneering, aggressive proto-punk/psych package complete with blips and bloops a la Hawkwind. In Hamilton, Ontario in the '70s they did find fans — but not a lot of peers.

"There were bands, but they were mainly cover bands," vocalist/guitarist Edgar Breau recalls. "There weren't a lot of original bands that I knew of. We were pretty hostile, to be honest — hostile towards what was going on in town at the time. Now I regret that attitude because you realize that in the musical community you've got to support one another. But back then it was different."

Hamilton was a different place indeed, and Saucer were a different band. Their first performance was in a church basement where they did an hour-long paean to noise entitled... well... "Noise." Before you start to think that Hamilton was simply too unsophisticated for Saucer (we're looking at you, Toronto hipsters), know that Saucer shopped demos to all the Canadian major labels, only to be turned down. No one understood... until 10 years later. That's when some old studio and live recordings (recorded by brothers Daniel and Bob Lanois) were be pressed onto vinyl. That album, Cyborgs Revisited, became a collectors' item. Word spread across the rock underground. The album was praised by the likes of Sonic Youth's Thurston Moore and Julian Cope. Finally, in 2003, Sonic Unyon gave Cyborgs Revisited a proper CD release. The album gets frequent mentions whenever Chart does its sporadic Top Canadian Albums Of All-Time polls.

Half Human Half Live features all-new studio material — though the term "all-new" isn't entirely correct. The recordings are new, but the songs are old — written by Breau back in the heyday of Simply Saucer, but never before etched onto disc (though fans may recognize a few of the tracks from the Cyborgs Revisited "bonus" material). Songs such as "Almost Ready Betty" capture the focused frenzy of Breau and the band, while elsewhere there are long, psych-inspired jams, patented Saucer-style instrumentals, and even an acoustic track, "Dandelion Kingdom," on which they break out the stand-up bass, banjo and brushes.

Recording "Dandelion Kingdom" reminded Breau of the band's early days. He calls himself "somewhat of a taskmaster" and remembers one occasion where he had asked the band to rehearse on Christmas Day. He may no longer be quite that demanding, but he still insists on working through until the job is done.

"They kept saying to me 'Look you've got to take a break,'" Breau recalls. "I insisted, saying 'We're going to nail this,' so we just kept going. I was just determined to do it. I think it was on the 12th take that we nailed it."

The other half of Half Human is the part that's half live. It was recorded before a select crowd at Catherine North Studios in Hamilton, and shows that the new Saucer still have chops.

"I felt it was important to show that we could still play those songs," Breau admits. "That's one of the reasons we did the live stuff, and there's just so much material we could do. I see this album as a transitional record, from the old to the new, and I'm kind of wrapping up by doing these songs."

Unknown band finds critical acclaim decades after they dissolve, reforms after almost 30 years... To the casual observer, it's a pretty tall tale. Imagine what it's like for Breau, who spent years making the music. It was appreciated by a handful of forward-thinking music geeks, but few others. Breau and the band knew they were on to something, but they never would have believed they could be mentioned in the same breath as bands from New York City and London.

"It's a mentality you have because you're from here," says Breau. "You're thinking 'We are not them, they are great, the Pink Fairies, The Velvet Underground... but we're in Hamilton.' But we were one of them — just without knowing it."


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Discography

Simply Saucer - Cyborgs Revisited (Sonic Unyon) 1989
Simply Saucer - Half Human/Half Live (Sonic Unyon) 2008

Simply Saucer -Baby Nova (Schizophrenic) 2014

Simply Saucer - Bullet Proof Nothing (Mammoth Cave) 2013

Simply Saucer - Reckless Agitation (Logans Hardware) 2012

Edgar Breau - Shadows of Ecstasy (Anthology) 1991
Edgar Breau - Canadian Primitive (Songhammer) 2004
Edgar Breau - Patches of Blue (Flying Inn Recordings) 20012

Photos

Bio

A Short Bio of Edgar Breau

Edgar Breau is a singer/songwriter hailing from Hamilton Ontario, Canada. Edgar founded Simply Saucer in 1973. Influenced by artists like the Velvet Underground, Pink Flyod and the Stooges, Simply Saucer were perhaps the first Canadian band to perform what would later come to be called proto punk music, joining rock pioneering artists like The Modern Lovers, Television and Patti Smith.
In 1974 at Master Sound Studios (Dan and Bob Lanois) the band recorded demos which would later be belatedly released in 1980 as Cyborgs Revisited to international critical acclaim. UK magazine UNCUT has called Edgar Breau a 'prophetic punk visionary' and in the recent best selling book by CBC entertainment writer, Bob Mersereau, The Top 100 Canadian albums, it finished a stunning #36.

Read more about the incredible story of Simply Saucer by visiting: MySpace/OfficialSimplySaucer or SimplySaucer.com.

After the original Simply Saucer disbanded in 1979, Edgar Breau turned his attention to acoustic guitar and creating original material as a solo artist. Influenced by the playing style of John Fahey, his open tuning compositions are quirky and eclectic. Also heard are influences like Ray Davies, Nick Drake and English folk acts like Pentangle and country blues icon Mississippi John Hurt.

Since 1979 Edgar has performed his original material solo and with backing bands, including tours of Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.Edgar continues to perform regularly in the Toronto/Hamilton hub. His 2012 release Patches of Blue garnered excellent reviews here and in the U.S. and nominations in eight catagories in the 2012 Hamilton Music Awards. Edgar performs live with jazz/session singer Colina Phillips (Bruce Cockburn, Anne Murray, Bryan Adams, Jully Black, live with James Taylor)
For more information here is a link to my personal artist's page
http://auteurresearch.tumblr.com/edgarbreau
For booking information, please contact flyinginnmusic@gmail.com



Band Members