Living Illusion
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Living Illusion

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada | SELF

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada | SELF
Band Rock Alternative

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You have to give Living Illusion credit: the Edmonton band has not only put out an independent CD, which they just celebrated at a release party a couple of weeks back at the Sidetrack—but they’ve also accompanied it with a DVD featuring an acoustic song and an interview with the band. Pretty ballsy for a group that is still establishing itself, wouldn’t one think? But Living Illusion doesn’t really want to play by any set music industry rules; brothers and founding members Shane and Jason Lamotte are champions of the independent spirit and want to show off that an up-and-coming band can do more than record a simple demo and pray for the best.

For Shane, the album that most influenced his musical career is Frogstomp, the 1995 debut from Australian youth-rockers Silverchair. As those of us in our 20s and beyond will recall, the Aussies in question were a genuine rock phenomenon simply because the members of the band were 14 and 15 when this album was released. No member of Silverchair was old enough to drive a car when the band’s first single, “Tomorrow,” became an MTV fave.

And while many critics at the time dissed the kids as simply being Pearl Jam wannabes who won a few talent contests Down Under, Silverchair had a simple formula for success: even at such young ages, the band members had a penchant for writing simple, hooky rock music. And it helped make Frogstomp the first album in Australian history to enter the domestic chart in the number-one slot.

And it was those rock melodies that made Lamotte a fan—and want to be in a band even that much more. “They were all so young, the songs weren’t difficult or very hard to play,” he says. “But the melody lines were so catchy and they could write simple, catchy hooks, too. And those songs just got stuck in your head.”

Lamotte has been playing guitar since Grade 7, about the same time the Silverchair trio got together. And the fact that three guys who were so young could go on to find fame and fortune was not lost on Lamotte. “It was the first CD that made me think ‘why can’t I do this?’” says Lamotte.

As well, what impressed Lamotte is that, despite the ages of the band members, Silverchair was able to do something with a debut that hardly any band ever does: according to him, the music was mature enough to make him think the band had been recording for years. “It is rare that a band’s first album is so solid that everyone likes it and connects with it,” he says. “But they did it.”

Unfortunately, the band could never replicate the success of that debut, and few music fans outside of Australia have heard their fourth and most recent release, Diorama (which, by the way, has earned the band the best reviews they’ve ever received). At the moment, Silverchair are still together, but Chair man Ben Gillies has taken time to work on his other band, Tambalane, which embraces a funky ’70s groove and has received good press in Australia.

As for Lamotte, Living Illusion is the realization of a dream he had when he was just 17 and started a band with his friends on Vancouver Island. He was crushed when, upon graduating high school, none of his friends wanted to go on, so he moved to Edmonton, joined up with his brother and started anew. After all, why let go of a dream when a trio of Australian kids showed you that if things go your way, it could come true? V

By STEVEN SANDOR - Vue Weekly


"This disc has been a labor of love spread out over about 3 years for the Lamotte Brothers, and it is easy to hear that they’ve spent a lot of time developing their hard rock sound. There’s a good mix of soft parts leading into crunchy riffs, with great lyrics and a lot of harmonies on the disc. This band has gained a certain measure of success in and around Edmonton, as well as the rest of Canada, with a commitment to create quasi-epics like the final track “Whispers”, which is by far the best on the album… a lengthy journey that takes you on a roller coaster ride of hard rock."

"One of the best songs is the untitled acoustic bonus track, which finally shows us some of the different facets of their songwriting ability. If I had my way, this song would be treated as an integral part of the CD, a central track, instead of just being thrown on as a bonus as a kind of afterthought. The disc is good, and we should all really watch out for these up and comers, especially if they take time to branch out into other genres and embrace a little diversity in their sound."

7 out of 10
Brent Francis - PunkTV


'You guys are one of the best new hard-rock bands in Edmonton'

-- Brent Oliver: Booking Manager, Brent Oliver Presents (Former Talent Buyer for The Sidetrack Cafe) - Brent Oliver Presents


'Living Illusion is by far my favorite hard rock band in the city'

--Art Szabo: Booking Manager, Starlite Room - The Starlite Room


Discography

Living Illusion has one full length record out, entitled "Living Illusion", and they are currently working their next record.

You can check out most of their songs online at www.livingillusion.com, also visit the band on MySpace at www.myspace.com/livingillusion.

Photos

Bio

Living Illusion's debut self titled album, has established them as a fresh and innovative force, uncovering a sound which showcases their melodic and progressive hard rock style. Their single "Whispers" has made it to the Top Ten of various University & College charts and has received airplay across Canada and the UK.

Founding members, Shane and Jason Lamotte, joined together in 2002 and spent the next years perfecting their first album. The record is a combination of songs written over a 5 year span and is a journey from aggression to self-realization. Since the albums release, they have succeeded in building a following for their music through touring and guerrilla style marketing.

While the brothers were accompanied on their album by Andrew "Doc" Degroot (Bass Player for Murder City Sparrows) and Lyle Molzan (Drummer for Jann Arden) they have since formed a solid touring group. The new additions to the band come in the form of Randy Bergh on bass and Sean Kamenski on drums. This addition assists in completing the edgy sound and high energy performance the boys were looking for.

Although the band may not be picked up by a major label they have been marketing themselves effectively. They play as many gigs as they can and still manage to hold down full time jobs. Unfortunately for the business world, their positions may soon be available for those who are looking for regular employment.

Living Illusion's professionalism, musical talents and passionate performances make way for a captivating live experience, leaving their audience feeling thoroughly rocked and begging for more.

Living Illusion has headlined to crowds of over 5000 and has shared the stage with many notable artists including: Econoline Crush, The Art of Dying, Tin Foil Phoenix, Cold Driven, Portal, and most recently ASHES dIVIDE.