Focus Your Audio
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Focus Your Audio

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2017 | AFM

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada | AFM
Established on Jan, 2017
Band Folk Americana

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"Focus Your Audio EP Review"

Focus Your Audio, the Canadian songwriting duo with ties to the Pacific Northwest have struck sonic gold on an incredible new, self-entitled EP. The songs are relatable, moving, and brilliantly actualized by skillful musical performances.

The 4 song-strong EP is a powerful, compelling musical statement for this new duo. Focus Your Audio includes vocalist Sarah Stewart and Bobby McAloney. Seattleites might recognize McAloneys licks as the backbone of Modern Day Poets. The songs on the new EP were produced by Sheldon Zaharko (Geddy Lee, Jane Siberry, The New Pornographers) at Warehouse Studios in Vancouver. Guest musicians include some of the biggest names in the Canadian music scene including drummer Johnny Andrews (Hey Ocean), bassist Mike Young (Mother Mother), and keys and piano by Mark Gladstone (Prism). But despite the ambitious production and arrangements, the music remains anchored in stellar songwriting, memorable riffs, and a passionate vocal performance by Stewart.

Few bands can match recorded endeavors to energetic live performances so well. But the 4 songs showcase the bands brilliant, haunting, and emotive nuance with shimmering clarity and sparkling production. The production of the songs is warm and full, while preserving the intimate energy of Focus Your Audio's live sets. The EP is cinematic and ethereal, but at the same time lucidly representative of the live highlights of the band.

And perhaps the most important virtue of the new EP, beyond the musicianship and production, is that it's a truly moving emotional experience. The resonance of the melodies and lyrics will sit with you and speak to you in intimate secrets, the way great music should. Despite this being a 4-song EP, it's a quickly consuming sonic journey.

Focus Your Audio is a band that deserves your attention. The new EP will be out soon, but in the meantime, check them out at FocusYourAudio.ca. - Elijah Dhavvan


"The Risk of You and Me"

In this ballad, the sound of the powerful and emotive vocals is merged so exactly with the guitars and the drums in the back that the track invites you to close your eyes and swing along the music in an instant.


This track is constructed so carefully that the sound reminds me of these awesome ice sculptures. (With these sculptures it’s a bit different though, since I don’t have any clue of how someone is able to create such detailed art with a chainsaw. But I might know a thing or two about music.)
First things first, and needless to say, I’m in love with the vocals. They are done in an impressive vocal range, they feel honest and believable to me. And there is an awesome amount of passion delivered with them.

There’s also a lot of details happening within the track, be it partially reverbed vocals, a sleek unexpected drum fill here and there, or a break to shave off the build up tension. Listen closely, guys. Hear that bass line breaking out for that extra melody? What about that rotary effect with the guitar tracks? Those ghost notes on the drums? There are so many aspects in this sound, it actually feels like you were sitting in a park on a sunny day, watching all those people around you doing all those things. You’re surrounded by many facets you can’t take in all at once. For me, sounds like these never get old, they just get familiar.

The latest release of the canadian creatives Sarah and Bobby, better known as “Focus Your Audio”, proves that an effective sound doesn’t have to be compressed and mixed flat, it doesn’t have to be loud nor energetic, it has to be done honest. True. And in my opinion it doesn’t get more honest than this track.

Follow/share the frequently updated spotify playlist “Alternative Gems” and listen to “The Risk of You and Me” and more awesome tracks featured on kms reviews! - Florian Maier


"Masquerade"

There are songs out there to just listen to on the go. The new release of Focus Your Audio doesn’t fall into this category. In my opinion this song aims for nothing less than letting the listener experience the feelings of the singer. And it hits the mark.


With a soft and defensive backing of piano, strings and a guitar, the stage is set for those awesome vocals of singer Sarah. This track has a special appeal to me since there’s a special feel attached to the vocals. You can feel the energy that lies hidden in them. Although this track being a soft and defensive ballad, there’s this undeniable energy waiting to break free like a caged bird. (That bird finally breaking free is one of the pictures “Masquerade” creates in my head, by the way.) For me, this reflects part of the unfiltered emotions the listener is allowed to hear.

As this track was written to describe the personal experience of watching a loved one go through mental illness and addiction, the track passes through several stages, there are small things placed in the song to make the song feelable. Those reverbed haunting vocals whispering like little voices in your head, for example. The mood change of the vocals and the music I talked about earlier. All these things allow the listener to really dive into the experience. Music like this isn’t just created and then consumed – it’s lived.

Follow/share the frequently updated spotify playlist “Alternative Gems” and listen to “Masquerade” and more awesome tracks featured on kms reviews! - Florian Maier


"Mastermind"

Get ready to break out of this destructive relationship. For this release, the guys of Focus Your Audio decided to step on the pedal a bit.


With a quite energetic and driving guitar backing, the vocals transmit that certain uplifting vibe that, in my case, urge you to get up and get shit done. The somewhat raw, edgy energy merged in the song feels like waiting to break free during the whole song, and the female vocals blend into that scenery perfectly. With several added elements and breaks, “Mastermind” keeps you in the dark most of the time where it wants to lead you. With several effects added to the guitar, there’s also a mysterious, unknown element added to the tune.

With the song being about getting away from a controlling and possessive relationship, it really does magic in painting the picture in your head with music. Even without the lyrics, the song feels exactly like these relationships…you’re trapped between the its-not-so-bad calm feeling and the that’s-enough-I’m-outta-here distinctive/confident state of mind. Plus theres the uncertainity of what will happen next. So, in my opinion “Mastermind” perfectly portraits the topic.

Follow/share the frequently updated spotify playlist “Alternative Gems” and listen to “Mastermind” and more awesome tracks featured on kms reviews! - Florian Maier


Discography

Broken (Single)
*Released: 2019
*Format: Digital, CD
*Producer: Tommy MacDonald
*Engineer: Karl Decaire 


Focus Your Audio (Self Titled EP)
*Released: Dec 6th 2019
*Format: Digital
*Producer & Engineer: Sheldon Zaharko

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Bio

Vancouver’s Focus Your Audio are truly a dynamic musical duo. The new band consists of the wildly talented Bobby McAloney and Sarah McArthur. They are impossibly well suited and illuminate one another’s generous skills. Their music seamlessly weaves together the best parts of folk, americana and rock and roll. Sarah’s voice is a sonic avalanche packed with passion and depth while Bobby provides the perfect musical landscape around it. Their chemistry together is palpable in their material.  They emulate a natural passion that is impossible to fake. 

Sarah grew up in small town Ontario then moved to the Maritimes and comes from a musical family, it’s in her blood and runs deep within her. Bobby grew up in Coquitlam and started playing music at a young age. He has played in an array of established bands such as the esteemed Modern Day Poets. They have both travelled the extensive and dusty road of the music industry before finding one another.  Focus Your Audio is a celebration both of them discovering their sound, in all of it’s emotive and vulnerable glory. The east coast charm and west coast grit flawlessly fuse together in their music. 

They have released their debut self-titled EP. These songs showcase their exquisitely intimate yet powerful sound. Sarah’s voice is tremendously passionate and raw. Their lyrics derive straight from the basements of their bleeding hearts. Their songs are beautifully emotive and tremendously moving. They are just getting started and are certainly one to watch. Their sincerity and relentless passion for music is contagious. 

Band Members