National Parks
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National Parks

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This band has not uploaded any videos


The best kept secret in music


"Scenecast: Ottawa"

Red Hemsley: “Routine of the Day”
From In the Land of Ignorance, self-released

Though now defunct, Red Hemsley are here because I’m abusing my unconvincing, murky authority. Hey, you’re telling me that if you were to make a list of bands from your local scene you wouldn’t include one of your all-time favorite local acts, broken up or otherwise? There was nothing special about the particular brand of Weezer-influenced indie rock that Red Hemsley played – they just made it more fun and did it better than anyone else in Ottawa.
- Coke Machine Glow, by Conrad Amendta

"The Scene"

“It’s long overdue,” Red Hemsley guitarist/vocalist Patrick Henein says of In the Land of Ignorance, his band’s debut six-song CD. Indeed, the quartet has been on the local scene for some six years without “product” to show for its efforts.

“It’s hard to know when to draw the line,” he explains. “Your next song is always going to be better than your last, so it’s hard to commit to recording those older songs. In retrospect, we do have some new songs I wish we’d recorded.”

There’ll be plenty of time for that if the long-awaited EP is any indication. Complex, poetic, pop born of a glorious musical cacophony, the songs on Land of Ignorance point to a bright future. Take, for instance, the simmering magnificence of the CD’s closing track, All the Jungle Kids.

A CD like Land of Ignorance must seem especially long overdue to the members of Red Hemsley. Henein and guitarist/vocalist Colin MacDougal have in fact been playing together for more than a decade, originally as members of Earth to Mueller. That band was once defeated at a high school talent competition by Trillium, the first group for Red Hemsley bassist Daniel Abrams and drummer Jesse Friedman. A long time indeed.

And worth the wait. But for the band that is this week playing only it’s second local show of the year. The challenge is to make the most of a fine CD release, even as Abrams heads to Montreal.

“We are a very serious band,” MacDougall insists, “despite not practicing, or recording or playing as much as we should. We’re hoping that Dan being in Montreal will make us take a more methodical, professional approach to what we’re doing. It could be a blessing in disguise.”

- Ottawa Sun, by Alan Wigney


"In the Land of Ingnorance" released under Red Hemsley 2004


Feeling a bit camera shy


National Parks is a Montreal-based pop-rock outfit that rose from the ashes of various other projects in September 2006. The band’s sound mixes the high-energy drive of Weezer, the cheeky adventurousness of the Pixies, and throws in a dash of Sunny Day Real Estate’s emotional urgency for good measure. The boys (and sometimes girls) of National Parks have been busy writing and recording a new batch of songs and will have their first EP released in early July 2007.

While new to the scene, members of National Parks have been playing in different bands in Ottawa and Montreal for over 10 years. Patrick Henein (Guitar/Vocals) and Colin MacDougall (Guitar/Vocals) have been writing and playing together since the tender age of fifteen. The two played with Dan Abrams (Guitar/keys) in Ottawa’s Red Hemsely, which had a good deal of home town success:
• Red Hemsley played countless shows at Ottawa venues including Zaphod Beeblebrox, Barrymores, Club SAW & Café Dekcuf with acts including Recoilers, Kepler & The Soft Disaster
• Red Hemsley’s self-released EP – “In the land of ignorance” received regular air play on Carleton University’s CKCU & Ottawa University’s CHUO
• About the CD, the Ottawa Sun said: “Complex poetic pop, born of a glorious musical cacophony, the songs on In the Land Of Ignorance point to a bright future”
• In a recent segment about the Ottawa music scene, Cokemachineglow’s Conrad Amenta described Red Hemsley in the following way:
"..Hey, you’re telling me that if you were to make a list of bands from your local scene you wouldn’t include one of your all-time favorite local acts.."

National Parks is rounded out by Ted Zeisner (drums), and Max Martin (bass).

The band will spend early 2007 trying to increase the number of gig notches in their proverbial bedpost of rock and will organize their first tour for summer 2007.