Fire Next Time
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Fire Next Time


Band Folk Rock


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"Edmonton Hot for Fire Next Time"

You only get what you put in, and Fire Next Time’s devotion to its craft is coming back in spades.

The hard-working local folk-punk band has a rabid following rarely seen in the city’. Hordes of fans shout fervently to every word at its sold-out live shows, and according to frontman James Renton, some have permanently inked the band’s logo onto their bodies.

Last week, a young woman asked him if he would “take any offence” to her getting a line of his lyrics inked on her arm. Of course, he said no.

“We have a great fan base in Edmonton. We’re always really taken aback by it, whenever we play a sold-out show in our hometown,” Renton says. “Being able to see people with Fire Next Time tattoos, that’s pretty amazing.”

Fire Next Time will play its tour comeback show Friday night at the Pawn Shop, with E-Town Beatdown, Freshman Years, Step Mothers and Ben Sir warming the stage.

The band returned two weeks ago from a 50-day trek across Canada, during which it was shocked to find a similarly enthusiastic fan base all the way in Prince Edward Island.

Such journeys are less than profitable, however, so the guys are glad to be back in the comfort of their hometown.

“It’s nice to actually have money to eat, and entertain my girlfriend and stuff like that. When I first got back I was dead broke,” Renton says. “It’s a huge strain being on tour, especially for that long, when you’re making no money at all.”

The road was not all parties and booze, either; the band apparently spent much of its downtime playing Dungeons and Dragons in hotel rooms with tourmate Spencer Jo.

The payback comes from the faces of devoted fans, and for guitarist Ryan Mick, that’s plenty. “That’s what I dreamed about as a kid, listening to music in my room. Having people scream the words back to you is something else for sure,” Mick says.

Rosewood Jesus is the ultimate crowd pleaser from the band’s second album Hungry Hymns, which dropped this summer. The banjo-driven sing-along is an anti-racist number about a racially motivated massacre in 1920s Florida. Once the chorus hits, the band knows it’s time to relinquish control of the microphones.

“You can’t even play it without being kicked off the stage. People just come up on stage and want to grab the mic from you, which is great,” Mick says.

Other songs, like the anthemic We Are the Streets, strike a chord with local fans because Renton’s lyrics deal specifically with Edmonton. On Hell is My Friends, he pays tribute to local venue the Wunderbar, where he’s played and watched some of his favourite shows.

“Most of the dudes in the band, our second home is the Wunderbar,” Renton says.

The rest of Alberta works its way into his songs as well. Renton, Mick, banjo player Kevin Klempp and drummer Randall Thurman were born in Fort McMurray, after all, while bassist Mikey McCaffrey hails from Drayton Valley.

Only three years after making the jump from an acoustic project Renton and Mick started in their apartment, Fire Next Time has already toured eight times. No one in the band has any intention of jumping ship for the 9-to-5 world, according to Renton. “The fact that we’re able to keep the van full of gas is pretty much all we can ask for at this point,” he says. - Edmonton Sun

"Fire Next Time"

There's nothing wrong with being proud of where you're from, but you've go to be honest about its less-than-desirable traits too.

This is the notion maintained by Fire Next Time, a local band that fuses together pounding folk-rock with a little punk edge to tell the tales of the land it calls home.

"I once heard an interview with that dude from the Red Hot Chili Peppers and he said every song that he ever wrote was about California and I thought that was really lame when I heard it, but now when I go back and I look at our stuff, 98 percent of it is about Alberta, and Edmonton especially," says guitarist and vocalist James Renton.

The underlying theme continues on from the band's previous release, Wild Rose Sorrow, to its brand new full-length, Hungry River Hymns. Renton says it reflects him witnessing numerous friends get swept up in the Alberta advantage, as well as racism in the south in the '20s and even a murder ballad.

Fire Next Time is often branded with a folk-punk label and Renton says the blend of styles comes from what they've grown up listening to, which he describes as lots of folk and country with some Bruce Springsteen-esque rock 'n' roll and a pissed-off 13-year-old rock kid thrown into the mix. The diversity of Fire Next Time's sound has allowed them to play shows with rock bands just as easily as a more subdued folk act.

Hungry Water Hymns has a harder edge than the band's previous releases, which Renton says can be traced back to his early punk influences like NOFX.

"You can play soft stuff live, but it's not as fun, especially when we're playing mostly punk-rock shows," he adds of the change of pace. "We'll save the softer stuff for coffee shops."
- Vue Weekly

"Fire Next Time - Wild Rose Sorrow"

Alberta's heady oil days have given Edmonton quintet Fire Next Time plenty of ammunition for their Wild Rose Sorrow debut album.

These songs describe the emotional and social fallout from boom times through a blend of goth country and Irish folk. The closest comparison might be Nick Cave (from his Bad Seeds days) with a banjo.

Lead singer James Renton channels Cave, Conor Oberst, and The Pogues' Shane MacGowan through dark, resounding lyrical themes like alcoholism, love lost, and murder.

Engaging barroom stompalongs like "River City Blues" and "Floods" convey a mood of ecstatic misery, while slow, dusty ballads like "Mexican Train" and closer "Black And Tan" reveal the band's brooding side.

"Loser Drunk," with a ruddy-nosed banjo and lyrics steeped in bleak inevitability, brings to mind cracked, blistered knuckles clutching a bottle for dear life.

"Chorus Of Crows" flashes poignant lyrical detail like, "This broken old man remains/A tapestry of empty veins," and boasts a simmering duet with Renton and guest vocalist Katie Lapi. More such duets on the album would have been nice. Perhaps next time.

Wild Rose Sorrow is a bleak, boozy indulgence of pain and pleasure. Or as Renton wails on "River City Blues," "You call this gospel, we call it song!"
- CHARTattack

"Fire Next Time - Wild Rose Sorrow"

For us non-Albertans, it's been easy to paint a picture of the entire province as one big boomtown wallowing in oil money. On that basis alone, it's refreshing to hear this Edmonton band take a stab at conveying the reality of their surroundings on this raging debut album. The tales of greed, addiction, murder and prostitution are unrelenting, but Fire Next Time's equally unrelenting goth country sound ? at times, approaching Nick Cave and Arcade Fire grandiosity, as on "River City Blues" ? carries Wild Rose Sorrow through to its inevitably bittersweet conclusion. Frontman James Renton can easily be forgiven for wearing his fondness for Conor Oberst on his sleeve, since his conviction is undeniable. The rest of the band share his sincerity, adding just the right touch of Celtic punk to stoke the flames even further. It adds up to Wild Rose Sorrow being a great introduction to one of the most promising new Canadian bands of this year. - Exclaim! magazine


Chorus Of Crows EP
Wild Rose Sorrow (full length)
Bend Like A Northern Light 7"
Hungry River Hymns (full length)



Fire Next Time fuse the pounding sound of folk rock with the pains of growing up and growing old on the prairies. The long dark winters in Northern Alberta have a way of tearing at your soul. Fire Next Time provide the soundtrack to cold, desolate landscapes, dark prairie nights and whiskey fueled nights at the local honky tonk. Their catchy choruses will have the saddest sap singing along, happy to have company in their misery. Now, that isn't to say that the bearded bards come across as another dreary emo band. In fact, Fire Next Time are the perfect live band, singing songs along with the crowd, creating a genuine performance that contains all of the energy and religious fervor of a Southern revival. The most cynical attendee will leave feeling rejuvenated, all of their darkest sins absolved by the church of FNT. Fire Next Time has played with acts like Rural Alberta Advantage, Jucifer, The Sumner Brothers, Larry and His Flask and Hooded Fang.