Katie Stelmanis
Gig Seeker Pro

Katie Stelmanis

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Band Alternative EDM

Calendar

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

Music

Press


"TOO LOUD"


In school I was never afraid of the jocks or the pretty kids because I knew that they’d never amount to anything. I was always scared of the drama kids and nerds, because they weren’t afraid of anything. Every nerd kid I knew then is now either a politician or a rich web designer or in Hot Chip. While you were busy trying to play sport or learning how to smoke weed, Katie Stelmanis was taking vocal lessons and probably writing an opera when she was 12.

The last time I saw her play, it was in front of 300 hardcore punks who couldn’t deal with it. She was singing so gracefully that I started to blush, and she was still laughing in everyone’s face. Katie isn’t afraid of anything.

Her first album is called Join Us, and I would really like to. It is full of the deepest and most punishing vocal ranges, paeans to things I will never be able to understand, and this rippling poise that forces me to re-evaluate everything I’ve ever done in my (I’ve now realised) pathetic life.

Vice: You play really serious music, but you seem like a total joker.

Katie Stelmanis: I guess I can’t really talk about my music in a serious way because then it becomes cheesy.

I mean, you have this really intense voice on stage and then between songs you’re just cracking wise.

I used to perform without much stage banter, and I found that it isolated us from the crowd. It was a lot for people to take in at once. I like to try and break up the intensity to make it seem more accessible. It’s a conscious effort.

How would you prefer people get into your music then?

Eventually, I want the performance to be a massive visual spectacle where I wouldn’t need as much banter.

Who is your ideal listener?

I only want to know about people who LOVE my stuff, I don’t care about people who are mediocre about it. I also like it when people detest my stuff too—I hate anything mediocre. As long as people are responsive I don’t care who they are.

Have you read any bad reviews?

Yeah, really bad ones. At first I’m always disappointed, but you have to learn to appreciate them. Most bad reviews focus on my voice and how it’s too loud.

That’s the best part!

The worst one was from Chart Magazine who basically said I was the worst act they had seen in a while, and that I would never find success. They said things like, “I didn’t like it and I could tell the people around me were off about it too”. It was really harsh. But the thing about that show was that I thought it was great, and the audience totally seemed into it, so eff Chart.

MIKE HALIECHUK
The album Join Us is out now on Blocks Recording Club. A split seven-inch with Fucked Up is also out now on Matador. myspace.com/katiestelmanis - VICE MAGAZINE


"PREVUE - KATIE STELMANIS"

Prevue - Katie Stelmanis

MARY CHRISTA O'KEEFE / marychrista@vueweekly.com
Ah, the endless beautiful treachery of music these days. Genres warp and bleed into other genres, tunneling under influences to different sounds while hiding their trails, leaving one holding a bag of references rarely close to ringing the bell of truth. It doesn’t matter much, except when it comes to “File Under” at record stores or in online realms that shorthand who we are by detailing what we like. We’ve created the long cultural tail in which fierce individuality is a force, and the universal din of a sonic polyglot playground, fluid in geography and time, is our signature 21st century soundtrack.

Toronto-based Katie Stelmanis has integrated her musical informants so effectively that name-dropping, while revealing a constellation of kinship sounds—Klaus Nomi without chilliness or camp? Nico in the throes of her harmonium love affair interpreting Brill Building pop? Kate Bush’s underworld daughter?—doesn’t do justice to her recent debut, Join Us.

The album’s a product of Stelmanis’s background and a long, finicky negotiation with finding not her voice—a creature to be reckoned with, powerful, big and doomy—but an aural tapestry and songwriting style strong and delightful enough to partner with it.

“I probably was that kid in the playground singing to myself,” she laughs. “I’ve been singing all my life. But I started all my classical training at around 10 or 11.”

Piano grounded her in solo performance and gave her a flexible musical spine, while the viola introduced her to building orchestral sounds, while her most overt influence from that period was her experience with the Canadian Children’s Opera Chorus.

“It made me fall for opera at an oddly young age,” she recalls. “The theatricality of it had appeal.”

Anyone who thinks Riot Grrl came and went, ending in the dustbin of history, forgets history builds on itself in ways that are beyond mysterious. Its legacy was to give a generation of people like Stelmanis, who admits to growing up on the fruits of the movement, the self-belief to be their own weirdos, pursuing their vision with an approach rooted in experimentation and self-possessed validation of creative independence.

“I didn’t write songs until later in my teens, on guitar. I was playing these little open mics in Toronto, getting used to songwriting and performing in that way,” she explains. A couple bands followed, but Stelmanis wanted to see what she’d do on her own with an expanded palette: keyboards and MIDI.

“I had to figure out what to do with these sounds, how to make sounds for the album,” Stelmanis notes.

What she came up with for Join Us is spectacular operatic pop, lush and darkly glittering, with eccentric rhythms and patterns cascading and percolating with its own innate reason, telling Stelmanis’s singular story. V
- VUE WEEKLY


"Going For Baroque"

Going for baroque
Katie Stelmanis mixes classical training with a riot grrl mentality
Published June 26, 2008 by Amanda Hu in Music Previews

DETAILS
Sled Island
Wednesday, June 25 - Saturday, June 28

More in: Rock / Pop
Find It...
Marquee Room

The classically trained musician is an intriguing specimen. They hone their skills in a regimented world of scales, sheet music and often-stoic discipline, far removed from your average do-it-yourself music-maker. Vocal powerhouse Katie Stelmanis knows this dichotomy all too well, having experienced both the risers of choir practice and the dingy stages of indie-rock clubs. As a young soon-to-be university student, the Torontonian made a whirlwind transition. She declined her spot to study opera at McGill, turning her attention to something completely foreign to her music school senses — her post-riot grrl band, Galaxy.

“Switching from classical music, I feel like the only way I could have done it was to do it the most drastic way possible,” she says. “It was a totally DIY band, and we had no idea how to play the guitar, no idea how to write songs in a band and no idea how to sing any other way than classically. I pretty much learned how to do all the DIY rock stuff with Galaxy. That fuelled how I do my own songs.”

With her 2008 solo offering, Join Us, Stelmanis is taking yet another turn, focusing on MIDI-keyboard-driven tracks that highlight her unique, heavy vocal abilities and deep-seated interest in arranging highly orchestrated audio landscapes. She says her electronic dabbling is not just a new sound for her, but a new tool for achieving her overarching musical goals.

“My main instrument is the piano, so working with a computer makes me able to channel any instrument I want through the [keyboard],” she explains. “I wanted to be able to write music for an orchestra, and I’m able to do that without having the theory behind me.”

This musical direction has also allowed the chanteuse to recognize the close connection between electronic projects and her musical bread and butter, the baroque style. The regimented tempos, conservative dynamic contrasts and formulaic approach in the genres serve as common ground. Despite the rigid, occasionally robotic undertones, Stelmanis’s lyrics are fluid and open to interpretation, something she says is also a product of her musical upbringing.

“I listened to a lot of opera in high school, and I never really understood what they were saying, but I found the way they were singing made me able to respond to it in a certain way,” she recalls. “For me, writing songs, I didn’t even think about words for a long time, because that’s not what it was about. It was about being able to convey certain emotions and certain feelings specifically through the music.

“When I listen to music, even though I’m not going through an emotional heartbreak, I like to feel emotional,” she adds. “I like to listen to songs where people are grieving, or going to movies that make me cry, because I like the feeling of my emotions being all riled up. When I’m making music, that’s generally the way it goes.”
- Fast Forward Weekly


"A New Big Woman-Voice"

Mary Christa O'Keefe, Calgary Herald
Published: Friday, June 27, 2008

What is a music festival for if not to discover the Next Indie Thing? Granted, it's also to bask in the communal sonic glow of long-standing favourites like Yo La Tengo and the Portastatics. But it's also an opportunity to haul up to the highest, loneliest ground in the "I heard it before you heard it" stakes. Sled Island's second year continues the trend established by its inaugural fest: bring together the tried and true (Wire, Okkervil River, Jonathan Richman) with hardworking up-and-comers (Woodpigeon, Sunparlour Players, the Wet Secrets) and the novel and little-known (no point dropping names; they're the ones you don't recognize).

Right now, Torontonian Katie Stelmanis falls into that final category. The young artist recently released her debut, Join Us, after painstakingly assembling the 10 tracks (nine originals plus one startlingly fresh cover of Carole King's "Natural Woman") pretty much all on her own, before releasing the album through the co-operative, defiantly not-a-label Blocks Recording Club. "I guess I'm a control freak when it comes to making music," Stelmanis offers. "If I'm going to release something under my name, something I've spent a long time on, something I'm doing myself, it better be exactly what I want it to be."

For all its clear intent, the lavishly layered Join Us defies easy description, although it brings up a litany of comparisons that don't land exactly on target: Kate Bush, Ute Lemper, Nico, Bjork, Yaz--arty music made by women with uncompromising artistic visions, a taste for spectacle, and little desire to play the fawning prancing pop tart. "People never hear your music the way that you do," Stelmanis laughs. "Sometimes the comparisons they make just do not make any sense." There's definitely a unique constellation of influences to be detected in her elaborately constructed and deconstructed songs--baroque pop with a gritty quasi-industrial spine married to percolating dance floor arpeggios, lush operatic cascading voices and the occasional digital crash and grind. "I was in the Canadian Children's Opera Chorus. Whenever the opera needed kids we'd perform with them on this big old stage, it made me fall for opera at an oddly young age," she explains. "I also took piano lessons and a bit of viola."


There's also another crucial element informing her sound. "I grew up on Riot Grrl," Stelmanis notes. She credits the movement as the key influence on her general approach to music and culture and the driving force behind picking up the guitar in her late teens. From there, she would take her original songs to Toronto's open-mic stages before discovering the ultimate control-freak tools: keyboards, computers, and MIDI. "The album is a product of that," Stelmanis says. "People love it or hate it. I've had some really harsh reviews, but very good ones too. Music so dramatic with such big singing--that's too much big woman-voice for some people to handle." But for others, it just leaves them wanting more.

- - -

Katie Stelmanis plays Saturday, June 28 at the Marquee Room as part of the Sled Island Festival. - Calgary Herald


"From Opera Halls to Rock Clubs"

From opera halls to rock clubs
Toronto's Katie Stelmanis uses her unconventional musical background to her advantage on solo debut
Jen Zoratti

From opera halls to rock clubsWhile it seems unlikely that a promising opera student would end up becoming a punk-rock guitarist and later, a laptop experimentalist, that's exactly how the story has gone for Toronto's Katie Stelmanis.

Sure, she's not belting out arias in concert halls these days - but the singer/songwriter's lengthy stint in the Canadian Children's Opera Chorus wasn't completely a waste. Stelmanis, 24, released her debut full-length album, Join Us, in January - and her powerful, classically trained pipes are certainly the record's centerpiece. Echoing the ethereal vocals of Kate Bush and the spooky electronica of Ladytron, it's hard to believe that a record as realized as Join Us was made on a computer.

It's also hard to believe that the record was largely an afterthought.

"I think it was something I was doing before I was thinking about making a record," Stelmanis says, over the phone from Toronto. "I got a computer when I was 19, and I started making computer music. I never sat down and thought 'I should make a record.' It just sort of happened."

There was a time when music was a far more structured affair for Stelmanis. Beginning her musical training at the age of 10, Stelmanis began playing the piano and singing, with opera eventually becoming her focus.

When it was time to decide just how far to take her opera studies, however, Stelmanis found herself at a crossroads.

"I was at a level where I was on my way to being an opera singer," Stelmanis says. "I think my change of heart came at a time when I was deciding what university to go to. I was going to study opera at McGill - but it's a lifestyle, to study opera. I wouldn't have been able to drink or get sick or stay up late."

Happily, she had no trouble finding a musical outlet in which she could do all three. Stelmanis strapped on a guitar and joined Toronto's L7-esque riot grrrl trio Galaxy - a big departure from her budding career as an opera singer.

"I think being in a band like Galaxy needed to happen," she laughs. "It forced me to learn new things - like the guitar. It took me a long time to find a voice to suit the music."

Similarly, her solo tour for Join Us is also forcing her to learn new things.

"The live show is funny," Stelmanis says. "Before I released the record, I was doing it myself with the backing track. Now, I have a three piece band with computer backing. We're still working on the show, but it's been getting a lot better." - Uptown Magazine


"STREET SPIRIT"

Katie Stelmanis

BY Sarah Liss January 09, 2008 14:01

True confessions time: I am a children’s choir survivor. I can still feel the itch of unflattering polyester capes, and cringe at flashbacks of warbling “negro spirituals” with hundreds of other overprivileged white preteens as though it were yesterday.

While my residual trauma is common among former kiddie choristers, there are exceptions to the rule. Katie Stelmanis wears her Canadian Children’s Opera Chorus laurels with pride, even going so far as to claim her tenure with the organization from age 10 onwards was, “like, the best time of my life.”

You can hear Stelmanis’ classical training all over her debut LP, Join Us (Blocks Recording Club), which she launches Friday (Jan. 11) at the Silver Dollar, alongside Montreal’s Luyas, The Torrent and Emma McKenna. The legacy of fascist conductors and boot camp–style vocalizing exercises lies in the singer’s soaring melismas, from-the-diaphragm projection and complex, meticulously layered vocal harmonies.

Though Stelmanis is best known as one-third of post-riot grrrl rock squad Galaxy, she didn’t originally aspire to cramped clubs. Her dreams were far more highbrow — to belt majestic arias in luxurious theatres.

In fact, Stelmanis was all geared up to study opera at McGill until she encountered an influence who’s changed the course of many a young girl’s life.

“About a week before school started, I decided I didn’t want to go to Montreal, and it was around that time that I started getting into Ani Difranco,” she explains, somewhat sheepishly. “I started writing lots and lots of songs on acoustic guitar. When I got sick of the guitar, I got a computer and started writing songs that way.

Rest assured that Join Us betrays no debt to the infamous Righteous Babe. Stelmanis’ songs are mercurial mixes of MIDI, tumultuous waves of near-gothic synthesizers and post-apocalyptic click-and-whirr percussion, swirling around her multi-tracked vocals, closer in tone and feeling to Kate Bush and Thom Yorke’s solo work than anything coffeehouse-oriented.

And although Stelmanis’ avant-garde/classical underpinnings might be too esoteric for some tastes, she’s found an ideal home within the Blocks Recording Club. Releasing her album with Blocks was a long-time goal, she says, and with recent changes in the co-op’s operating structure due in part to shifts in the board (founding member Steve Kado declined to run again, making room for new minds and ideas), Stelmanis is ecstatic about the direction in which Blocks is headed.

“I know Steve wanted it to be really punk rock, and it’s done a good job of being like that and staying like that. But I think there are other people in Blocks who can see it becoming a bigger thing.”

In memoriam
Bonnie O’Donnell, a member of the Pandyamonium management team (Serena Ryder, Jully Black) died suddenly after a brief illness Jan. 7. Our thoughts are with her friends, family and colleagues.
- EYE WEEKLY


"Katie Stelmanis Getting Used To Listeners Taking Her Album's Title To Heart"

Katie Stelmanis Getting Used To Listeners Taking Her Album's Title To Heart

Tuesday March 04, 2008 @ 06:00 PM
By: ChartAttack.com Staff

Katie Stelmanis


When Katie Stelmanis played her CD release show on Jan. 11 at Toronto's Silver Dollar, the singer/songwriter was a bit taken aback by the number of unfamiliar faces in the audience.

Stelmanis released her debut solo effort, Join Us, in January through Blocks Recording Club. She was previously a member of riot grrl squad Galaxy, and also sings with Toronto music collective Bruce Peninsula, which means she's no stranger to performing.

Nevertheless, she says she finds it "super weird" that people are coming to shows just to see her. Prior to the CD release, Stelmanis says she'd mostly played shows just for her friends. Recent shows in Kingston and Guelph, Ont. made her realize she'll have to become accustomed to audiences full of strangers.

"It's pretty amazing, and I find it gives you sort of a push on the stage when you know that people are there to see you, as opposed to not knowing if they're liking your music if you're opening for someone, or if you're just playing for a different crowd or whatever. It's a pretty awesome feeling, actually, to have people there to see you."

With its driving beats and synthesizers layered on top of Stelmanis' sweeping vocals, Join Us has been described as a cross between Depeche Mode and Kate Bush, a comparison Stelmanis doesn't quite understand. She says her sound is better described as "pop music from opera."

Stelmanis was part of the Canadian Children's Opera Chorus as a youngster and, for a time, wanted to study opera at Montreal's McGill University. But her plans changed when she started writing her own material, which made her decide not to become an opera singer.

"I wouldn't be able to really have very much fun, because you have to take care of your voice all the time," Stelmanis says. "I had just gotten into writing my own music, so I decided to focus on that instead."

Join Us was mostly recorded at Stelmanis' Toronto home. She says she was trying to make an album which kept listeners continually engaged, and used her own listening experiences as a benchmark.

"For me, when I was listening to music, my favourite time of listening to it was at nighttime in my headphones, when it was just me and the music and nothing else," she says. "I think that basically what I wanted to… make it the type of music that could entertain somebody on its own, with no other stimulation."

Stelmanis will put Join Us on display again when she plays the annual Chart Canadian Music Week showcase on Thursday at Toronto's Horseshoe Tavern with Plants And Animals, Dog Day, The Acorn, Oh No Forest Fires, Sunparlour Players and Immaculate Machine. She's also slated to open for London, Ont. singer Basia Bulat at several Canadian stops in March and April.

Stelmanis will tour in May and June, though she's not sure where yet, and will search for label support outside Canada in the next few months. She wants more people to hear her record and join her at gigs worldwide. She's also recording a full-length with Bruce Peninsula that should hopefully be released this spring.

Join Stelmanis at these shows:

* March 6 Toronto, ON @ Horseshoe Tavern (Chart CMW showcase w/The Acorn, Plants And Animals, Dog Day, Oh No Forest Fires, Sunparlour Players and Immaculate Machine)
* March 27 Ottawa, ON @ Zaphod Beeblebrox w/Basia Bulat
* March 28 Kingston, ON @ The Grad Club w/Basia Bulat
* March 29 Toronto, ON @ Lee's Palace w/Basia Bulat
* April 3 Hamilton, ON @ The Casbah w/Basia Bulat
* April 4 London, ON @ Call The Office w/Basia Bulat
* April 5 Guelph, ON @ Salsateria w/Basia Bulat
* April 12 Montreal, QC @ La Sala Rossa w/Basia Bulat

—Kate Harper - Chart Magazine


"POP ROCKS"


Katie Stelmanis
Join Us
By Alex Molotkow

One of the best things about Katie Stelmanis’s debut is how it doesn’t sound like Toronto. Not to disparage my beloved home (or Blocks Recording Club), but sometimes it’s impossible to approach a new Toronto release without trepidation — are they a band or a “fun-with-roommates” project that too many people encouraged? Luckily, Stelmanis’s debut is far from self-indulgent. Equipped with strong pipes, she has more in common with Elizabeth Fraser or Kate Bush than the bands she’s liable to share bills with. Following in the footsteps of other “esoteric” singer-songwriters, Stelmanis did the album on her own — writing, performing and recording — and she can handle the weight. While firmly rooted in the ’80s (sinister synth lines, dramatic, chant-like vocals), Join Us suggests more contemporary influences. It seems that Stelmanis, who played in the Heavens to Betsy-like band Galaxy, is (or was) a fan of Sleater-Kinney and the Organ. There’s a bit of Corin Tucker in her vocals and she takes the Organ’s simple, bittersweet retro style a few shades darker. These influences are subtle but they help to map out the musical routes that Stelmanis has taken from the old greats to now. For a debut, Join Us is surprisingly strong, and for a self-made record, it’s very nicely put together. This is one release that should make it beyond the cushy confines of the GTA. (Blocks) - Exclaim!


"Katie Stelmanis at the Horseshoe"

Katie Stelmanis

at the Horseshoe (370 Queen West), 10:10 pm.

Who: With a huge voice and tiny hands, the classically trained Katie Stelmanis shreds her keyboard into terrifyingly beautiful post-grunge cacophonies.

Why: Filtered through MIDI and keyboards, Stelmanis’s songs are rife with repetitive lyrical hooks and vocal harmonies. But don’t confuse her melodies with pop pleasantries; her songs are loud, distorted symphonies of longing and angst so overwhelming, they make it difficult to breathe. Backed by Maya Postepski, her live show is a hypnotizing drama of sound and emotion.

Buzz factor: If there’s a lot of hype about Join Us, the LP 23-year-old Stelmanis just released with Blocks Recording Club, it’s because she’s something of a phenomenon. With four years of rock ’n’ roll behind her in Galaxy, she’s staked out ground as a performer, songwriter and composer and masterminded the album’s complex arrangements. All eyes on this one. Watch out for an upcoming music video and summer tour. - NOW Magazine


"Katie Stelmanis"

Katie Stelmanis

By Bill Adams

For a brief period (from the late 1970s until about 1984)
electronic music was everywhere, and electronic musical
instruments and devices became incredibly affordable because
there were literally dozens of manufacturers producing devices.
But, each used different programming formats so not many were
compatible with each other and couldn’t be interconnected.
Like computers in the early days, it was all fairly primitive and
a musician interested in making electronic sounds could easily
have a room full of equipment whose with the sole function was
toof performing the simplest and smallest of sounds. The Musical
Instrument Digital Interface changed all of that. An industry-
standard protocol that enables electronic musical instruments,
computers and other equipment to communicate, MIDI does not
transmit an audio signal or media — it simply transmits digital
data such as the pitch and intensity of musical notes to play;,
control signals for parameters such as volume, vibrato and
panning; and, cues and clock signals to set the tempo.
As an electronic protocol, it is notable for its success, both in
its widespread adoption throughout the industry, and in
remaining essentially unchanged in the face of technological
developments since its introduction in 1983. The instrument’s
longevity is remarkable; neitiether the power of punk rock nor the
death of Reaganomics, not even a bunch of scraggly–haired
musicians from Seattle, were able to stop MIDI completely.
For Katie Stelmanis, MIDI proved to be an invaluable tool as she
began making her debut LP, Join Us, as, on her own she was able
to craft fully–formed and dense songs that, by all accounts, sound
quite unlike anything heard in pop currently, both from approach
and aural standpoints.
“I recorded the whole thing myself at my house,” begins the
singer as she outlines the process that yielded Join Us. “I just did
most of it in my bedroom because all of the instruments on it
were MIDI; nothing’s real, it’s all MIDI that I programmed in
through a keyboard except for the vocals and those I just
recorded myself either at my house or at my cottage. So I
recorded everything and then I passed it on to a couple of other
people to mix it for me and make it sound professional and not
like MIDI.
“I think all of the songs on there were about a year’s worth of
material, so it probably took about a year to get it all together
and then mixing and matching was a little bit extra,” continues
Stelmanis. “I’d say that the whole process took about a year and a
half.
“I try to pull out a song a month. It takes me a bit of time to
arrange all the parts, but I try to perpetually be working on
something; it’s easy to sit back and not actually come up with
anything concrete, but I resist that urge as much as possible and
try to be in a position where I’m always working on something.”
For fear of sounding like a music snob, Stelamis’ debut bears
little resemblance to a MIDI–produced album. It has always been
regarded as fairly conventional wisdom that, other than the odd
little inflection for colour or contrived novelty, pop and world
music mix with MIDI about as well as oil and water, unless the
intention is to make an electronic record and frankly, Join Us
bears little in the way of any of such stylistic earmarks.
Songs including “Harder Now”, “Broken” and “You’ll Fall” are
more polyrhythmic and polished than the average synthetic
record which, even at its most accomplished, tends to sound tinny
and stiff. and Stelmanis’ own worldly vocals don’t betray a sense
of creative infancy; rather, her vocals sound so fluid and mix with
the instrumentation so well that it sounds remarkably calculated
and accomplished. The blend of worldbeat sounds and vocals
blend together as if in realtime, as the singer successfully
reinvents the pop idiom in her own image and doesn’t succumb
to any easy–to–use clichés, part of which she attributes to her
classically trained upbringing.
“Nothing that I wrote when I first started shows up on the
record – but that was a lot more avant garde and experimental
because it was really classically based,” concedes Stelmanis. “For
me, there were moments of musical ecstasy in it and then over
time I realized that I wanted to get a little bit of pop into it so I
tried to make them poppier. That’s really been a challenge for me
but I think that’s what I’ve been working towards. Like, I don’t
want to make them bad pop music or anything, but I’d like to
make what I’m doing more accessible, and put more structure and
thought into them to make them more accessible.
“I have three other musicians playing with me now on the
stage and we’re actually just in the process right now of learning
it all; I had to teach them all the parts,” explains Stelmanis when
asked what people at the shows can expect to see. “ I’ve got a
drummer/percussionist, a guitar player and a keyboar - The Echo - Guelph


Discography

"Join Us" - 2008 (Blocks Recording Club)
"Royal Swan/I'm Sick 7" split - 2008 (Matador)
"Believe Me 7"" - 2009 (Vice)

Photos

Bio

Operatically trained anti-diva Katie Stelmanis already has a reputation as an unf**kwithable vocalist and composer. A member of the Blocks Recording Collective, at the illuminatus age of twenty-four Stelmanis has been featured in NME, on CBC radio and praised in every Canadian rag you can name (NOW, EYE Weekly, etc). Stelmanis' arsenal is simple: piano and midi noise percolations shape simple songs that subtly grow into breathtaking, cathartic moments. The transformative power behind her voice is wholly undeniable. Stelmanis' lush, dark songs confound critics and defy categorization; the only reference points imaginable are perhaps a young Kate Bush or far more accessible and less pretentious Diamanda Galas. Join Us her debut full length premiered at #6 on the Canadian college radio charts, peaked nationally at #2, and has since been ranked #1 by the Toronto Star's Anti-Hit List. She has done collaborative work with fellow Canucks Fucked Up appearing on their recent Matador long player, Chemistry of Common Life, and b-siding an FU 7”called “I’m Sick.” The former being nominated for the Polaris short-list. Her most recent 7”, “Believe Me” is out now on in the UK on Vice/Loog Records and has already sold through almost the entire pressing.

An artless performer, Stelmanis’s live band is fleshed out with standing drummer Maya Postepski, guitarist Thom Gill and haunting Halifax twins The Ghost Bees. Already having shared the stage with Final Fantasy, Iron and Wine, Jens Lekman and Lykke Li, the band is about to embark on a full US tour this fall alongside CocoRosie in some of North America's greatiest music Halls. A post pre-teen Tegan and Sara minus the over the top vocal effects and with the street cred of Nosferatu.