Ken Dirschl
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Ken Dirschl

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The best kept secret in music


"Ken Dirschl"

Former Gasoline front-man Ken Dirschl has delivered a solid alt-country album with Plan For Conquest. His songs are all well written and despite his recordings sounding a little flat at times, the disc flows well. The only thing that really haunts this album is Dirschl's constant vocal impersonations. Throughout most of the disc he seems to be ducking and weaving between trying to sound like various members of the Traveling Wilburys (sometimes in one song). This is the only real drawback though. Dirschl has a penchant for writing catchy tunes that sound remarkably relaxed. His hooks come off as almost happenstance while just trying to tell a story. He also seems to have an understanding of the conventions of his genre while having just as good an understanding of its clichés. This lets Plan For Conquest settle into the same territory as Matt Mays' self-titled debut with good songs set in rock/country arrangements. Dirschl avoids trying to jam his notions for each track down your throat. He lets you digest each one on your own.

Matt Charlton - Exclaim Magazine

"The Scene"

"I'm a rock'n'roller at heart" Ken Dirschl declared nearly a decade ago. At that time, Dirschl fronted Gasoline, a decidedly rockin' combo from Toronto.
Ah, but the singer-songwriter who grew up in Ottawa has since looked deeper into that old heart of his. And by chipping away at the rock, Dirschl discovered he was also a little bit country.
"This is what I've always been doing" Dirschl says of the melodic heard on his debut Plan For Conquest. "I know what I was doing before was a little harder-edged, but the early '90's was a more aggressive time generally. I've always had that country influence. I think I learned it through the Stones."
Whatever the source (and he admits to having also been introduced to traditional country through K-Tel albums), Dirschl has learned it well. The acoustic-based songs on Plan For Conquest represent country-rock at it's finest. And, Dirschl reports, they were a long time coming.
"Gasoline wound down in 1997 and I thought I was done with the music business after that. But I kept writing, and I decided that I didn't want my music to be represented by just that Gasoline recording. So I may have a gap in my resume, but it's all starting again".
Properly this time, as Dirschl and drummer Michael Phillip Wojewoda will demonstrate tomorrow evening at the Rainbow. - The Toronto Sun

"Ken Dirschl :: Plan For Conquest"

This Ottawa-bred artist paid his dues in the '90's playing the Toronto bar circuit in his rock band Gasoline. Obviously, Dirschl learned plenty in that time. On his confident, self-produced solo debut, he sings and plays all the instruments on a dozen original songs that bear the mark of a young Tom Petty or Steve Earle. With material as strong as the country-tinged "Sister Love", the Celtic rocker "One Night with the Irish" and the sweet confessional ballad "The One and Only Girl", Dirschl clearly has a promising future.

Nicholas Jennings - Inside Entertainment Magazine


- 'Plan For Conquest': 12-song album, released 2004
- 'Some Men': single released to AC, Hot AC and Rock Radio as of January 10, 2005 - receiving light and medium rotation on ten stations so far
- 'Plan For Conquest' playlisted on 25 campus stations so far.
- 'One Night With The Irish' and 'Siamese Twins' on regular playlist at Radio IO


Feeling a bit camera shy


Armed with a ‘Plan for Conquest’ singer/songwriter Ken Dirschl is taking his brand of earth-flavoured rock’n’roll to the world. Conceived in a Quebec cottage and recorded at home in Toronto in a roof-top “tar-paper shack”, the former front man of maverick Toronto rock group Gasoline has spent the last two years concocting the powerful anthems that occupy the sonic landscape of his first solo album, ‘Plan for Conquest’. Moving effortlessly from bittersweet ballad to inspired epic to straight-ahead rocker, Dirschl’s voice travels gracefully over the terrain, morphing chameleon-like from scene to scene.

Working with legendary producer Michael Phillip Wojewoda (Barenaked Ladies, Great Big Sea, Ashley MacIsaac, Spirit of the West, Rheostatics) who provided drums and mixing duties, Dirschl covered the remaining musical bases himself; recording, singing and playing all the parts that make up the whole of this remarkable album. Although various styles abound, country and blues influences are predominant throughout, and have prompted comparisons to artists such as Ryan Adams, Tom Petty and Blue Rodeo.

Prior to the creation of ‘Plan for Conquest’, Dirschl honed his musical talents with Gasoline for six years, touring on their own and opening for established acts like The Tea Party, The Headstones, Junkhouse and Jeff Healey. After the band’s demise in ’97, Dirschl maintained a steady pace, playing solo shows and writing and recording constantly for another year, before finally deciding he was in need of a break. Unable to deny his passion for long, however, Dirschl began assembling equipment and sketching out the ideas for a ‘do-it-yourself’ album that ultimately became ‘Plan for Conquest’.

After the lengthy recording and mixing process was completed, renowned Juno-award winning graphic artist Antoine Moonen (The Tea Party, David Usher, Econoline Crush, Killjoys) added his contribution, helping Dirschl package his musical compilation with an impressive design that represents the various themes of the songs

Now with finished product in hand and a steadily-growing loyal fan base behind him, Ken Dirschl is ready to take ‘Plan for Conquest’ out of the woodshed and into the world.