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The best kept secret in music


"Livid are anything but fed up with where they're at"

Coming up with an album title is always a tricky business. Is there a particular song that you feel has "title-track" written all over it? Is the material unified enough for a conceptually binding title? Can you get away with humour in your title? How memorable should it be? And can the title be self-referential without being obtuse?

For Winnipeg band Livid, the answer to the last of those rhetorical questions appears to be an unequivocal "yes." August 8, 2003 marks the CD release party for One Fifth of Zero, and vocalist Nick Martin explains the new CD title thusly; "[It's a] concept from the band based on a few different things … based on the relationship we had with our ex-guitar player."

Like many bands, Livid went through some growing pains that saw the replacement
of their fifth member and former lead guitarist with Matt Worobec this spring. I note that mathematically, one fifth of zero is still zero - a change that doesn't affect the outcome, to which Martin responds that reflecting on the changes to the band the title "had a poignancy at the time - it fit everything we'd been leaning towards."

Since Worobec joined Martin, guitarist Paul Baker, drummer Kevin Schmidt and
bassist Cory Pritchard in the spring, the band has gelled considerably. March of this year saw the quintet head off to Toronto and a performance at Canadian Music Week (CMW). "CMW was especially interesting because Matt had only been in the band for about six weeks and we took the train down there and got to gel together." By the time the band visited Vancouver to play at the Lamplighter as part of New Music West in May, they were firing on all cylinders and Martin enthusiastically notes that "everywhere we played we got offers to come back again immediately."

Such opportunities are particularly thrilling for a band that successfully made the move from being both a West-Man based and covers-oriented band, to a Winnipeg-based band that writes original material within the last few years. Their new material is "a return to the staples of rock… big backbeats, really infectious melodies… melodic alt-rock with hook-laden riffs," as Martin describes their sound.

The band has shared the stage with a number of CanCon stalwarts, including the Headstones and Wide Mouth Mason, but at the CD release party they'll be joined by two other up-and-coming Winnipeg bands: Steeple Chaser and Projektor. As Martin confidently notes of the line-up, "you'll see the three best bands in Winnipeg playing right now… if I may be so bold as to say so."

The CD release party for Livid's One Fifth of Zero is August 8 at The Zoo,
160 Osborne. Doors open at 9, with Projektor starting the evening off at
10:15 p.m. Tickets are $5 at the door.

- By Michael Elves -

"Local band makes good"

Four years ago a group of young men got together for the purpose of playing pure, unbridled rock and roll. They love what they do, are enthusiastic about it and thrive on entertaining their growing fan base. Ladies and gentlemen, meet Livid.

Vocalist Nick Martin, guitarists Matt Worobec and Paul Baker, bassist Cory Pritchard and drummer Kevin Schmidt create irresistibly carefree rock songs, and after years of perfecting them in front of live audiences, have captured them on disc for a special take home treat.

One Fifth of Zero is the result of Livid’s multiple years of hard work. The debut album was recorded at Winnipeg’s Studio 11 with Juno award winning performer and engineer Paul Scinocca. Set for release August 8 at The Zoo, Martin insists that while the CD will enhance the band’s image, it is by no means a ticket out of town.

“What we are concentrating on is releasing the album,” he says, “then doing our best around Winnipeg to really pump it up so we really have something to come back home to after we head out on the road.”

With tours both west and east already under their belts and an array of publicity and entertainment agencies working in the wings, Livid aren’t just another local garage band looking for their big shot. Martin is eerily business savvy, switching effortlessly between speaking about various marketing methods employed by the band and the most feasible financial options to ensure maximum revenue for the group. His expectations for One Fifth of Zero mirror many of the longer term goals he holds for the band.

“The number one expectation is to cover our costs; make sure we’re not in debt,” Martin says. “We’ve applied for the right grants and talked to the right people and we’ve lined up enough shows that it looks like that goal will be met. Our next goal is to just get our name out there, making people know we’re a band worth watching.”

Business smarts aren’t the only thing Livid has going for it. Though still young as a band, they have shared stages with the likes of Nickelback, Big Sugar, I Mother Earth, The Headstones and Wide Mouth Mason. Their hands-on promotional techniques ensure the band regularly plays to hundreds of fans and maintains a very open, approachable relationship with his fans. Despite their established nature, however, Martin says on the eve of the album release that is to be attended by some of the most well known agents in Canada, he’s not exactly relaxed.

“There’s always the pressure to make sure we sell a substantial amount of records and get our product out on the streets and we get a buzz going about us amongst people besides our group of friends,” he says. “As a musician, I like to sleep in and I’ve been up every day this week at like seven in the morning e-mailing people and phoning people and answering phone calls, so there’s that pressure. Then there’s the pressure to know that there are going to be a lot of “big wigs” attending the show and we gotta put on a good show to impress them and then there’s just the added pressure of making sure people enjoy our music. We’re certainly very very proud of this album, it’s been a long year in progress and it’s finally out there!”

Livid release One Fifth of Zero Aug. 8 at the Zoo with guests Steeple Chaser and Projektor. Tickets are $5 at the door.

Views and information presented by columnists are not necessarily shared by the publisher. - By KARI D - Special to


08/2003 - LIVID - One Fifth Of Zero
12/2001 - LIVID - Daylong Apathy

There are tracks available for listening off our web site under the media section. WE also had radio airplay on the independent rock show, River City Rawk Show on Power 97 in Winnipeg, Manitoba. We have also been played on UMFM, University of Manitoba's Campus radio station.


Feeling a bit camera shy


"Strong, catchy songs. Huge potential for radio." - NewMusicWest Jury 2003

When everyone sounds like everyone else, it’s hard to determine what’s original in rock music today. The only way to describe Livid’s music is that it is their music.

Comprised of vocalist Nick Martin, lead guitarist Lyle Catagas, guitarist Paul Baker, drummer Kevin Schmidt and bassist Cory Pritchard, Livid have been creating a name for themselves in their hometown of Winnipeg and turning heads at major festival appearances across the country.

Livid create high-energy melodic alt-rock with an emphatic return to large solos, bombastic drumbeats and infectious melodies, the very elements that once defined rock music. Livid’s devotion to creating music they enjoy has brought forth their own unique and distinguishable style, something that seems to have been lost in recent years. There are elements of Pearl Jam, Incubus, and Jane’s Addiction present, but at the same time the music speaks for itself, creates it’s own identity and finds a place to resonate within you.

Not art-house pop, or ambient symphonic brilliance, it’s original, true and extremely catchy rock music created by five individuals that love to come together and create their own art. "I’m not a political person, therefore I don’t write political lyrics. It’s as simple as that," states vocalist Nick Martin. "We’re five guys that got together to create rock n’ roll and that’s what we do. I love to sing therefore I pour everything I have into it. It’s the same with everyone else in the band. We’re doing this because we want to, not because we have an agenda towards something."

Livid’s first full-length release One Fifth of Zero presents the band’s diversity and willingness to work with different styles of music. Opening with the catchy "Lemon Tree", the band kicks the disc off with a hook-laden rocker that features Livid blasting through the gates with a chugging riff and moaning melody. Moving from alt-rock to the jazz influenced ballad "Let Yourself Be", to the thick blues feel of "Johnny Lunchbox" and the creeping closer "Nothing Left" the album explores the many sides of Livid’s capabilities.

The band recorded the album in their hometown of Winnipeg at Studio 11 with Paul Scinocca (Derek Miller, Sonic Bloom). This Juno award winning performer and engineer has brought forth Livid’s sound, keeping it true to their frenetic live shows. "We didn’t want to bog the album down in studio computer tricks," says Martin. "Too many albums have the same drum sounds, the same guitar tones, the same vocal effects- it just leads to confusion. We were very concerned with the overall approach to the sound of this album. We didn’t rent a hundred guitars and use different processors and amps. We used our stage gear so the album comes across as a cleaner and polished version of our live show."

The band has been working hard at their album but has been working harder at promoting themselves through Winnipeg and beyond. Having performed at both Canadian Music Week and NewMusicWest this past spring the band has performed at several outdoor festivals throughout Manitoba where they have shared the stage with such Canadian staples as Wide Mouth Mason, The Headstones, Big Sugar, Nickelback and I Mother Earth.