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The best kept secret in music


"Pugwash Music is all the Craze"

(07 April 2004 12:40) Written by Aaron Levy - Staff Writer

This past Thursday had Toronto’s PDQ shaking things up a little at Canadian independent music landmark Clinton’s. They held a CD release party for their first album, the self-produced Every New Place, where they took their musical influences and created a distinct sound that works in front of a live audience.
“We came into our musical adolescence together,” says bassist Dom Hanlon, who also holds one-third lead vocal duties.
“We started getting into the same rock bands at the same time as we started learning to play our first instruments,” recalls drummer Guy Godfree of the early years in Pugwash, Nova Scotia. “In a small town you have very few people to go to when you hit musical puberty.”
As one half of the quartet stuck with their Fender and Yamaha gear out East, guitarist Johnny Ophek and keyboardist Brendon Quinn were maturing in Toronto.
“One theme I’ve found that I’m especially attracted to is the notion that all a person knows is the place that they’re in,” says Ophek. “So for me, it almost seems when you’re in a place like Toronto, that the only place that exists in the world is Toronto, and it takes a very concerted effort to recognize that there are people who live lives exactly like yours.”
PDQ’s success lies in creating genuinely thoughtful yet accessible pop/rock songs. They blend straightforward, unique pop melodies with ambitious changes and subtle hooks. Quinn’s keyboards set a defining tone, and they trade in and out with scorches of solo guitar from Ophek. Drummer Godfree sets the perfect rhythm for a groove, and bassist Dominic Hanlon’s fills are solid.
For a relatively new band, they have a keen interest in experimenting with the boundaries of the genres they explore, covering the Beatles, Peter Gabriel, and Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean”.
“You wanna be the kind of band that you can really get into and dance and groove to,” states Quinn. “But at the same time, for people who don’t really wanna do that, and just wanna appreciate it musically, that’s as much of a goal as the other. I think it’s gotta be something intelligent that you can appreciate that way, but at the same time just hang out to.”

- Excalibur Online

"Grindstone Magazine"


All too often I hear people bitching about how there is no good underground music coming out of Canada, yet they make this complaint sitting on their couch, wearing a Phish shirt and listening to a Dave Matthews Band CD. The point about underground music is that you have to go out and find it; you have to be out in the streets and the bars to uncover these bands. In that spirit, I have decided to do the leg-work for all you lazy bastards and thus I spawned Grind Stone, a section that will feature up and coming Canadian bands. If you are in a band or if you’re a DJ, an MC, a singer or any other type of musician and would like to be featured, hit me at jbiz_capmag@hotmail.com This section will not feature any bad reviews – my purpose is to direct people towards music that I feel is worthy, not to sour people on a band just because they don’t flip my skirt.

White boy soul is a very rare thing. Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan and Brad Nowell (of Sublime) all had it. PDQ also have that special something. With their jazz and blues tinged rock, they are bringing the soul back to a genre that has been pretty much dead since grunge killed it in the early nineties. While rock (not to be confused with alternative) is the primary core of the band, there are diverse and distinct overtones from other musical veins. Blending jazz, blues and a little taste of funk into the mix, PDQ bring a flavor that is all their own. In general, fusion bands are god-awful and the listener is left with a feeling that the band should have stuck to one genre (rap-metal anybody?) or that it is watered down crap meant for mass consumption (ever feel like there’s too much hippie in your hip-hop?). PDQ have succeeded admirably where most others have failed; they are diverse yet cohesive and their entire catalogue is permeated with true heart and feeling – nothing but blood, sweat and tears went into these songs. Their unbelievable diversity is exemplified by the random comparisons that they have gotten: Paul Simon, The Beatles, Fugazi, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Jeff Buckley among others. Although this Halifax quartet has only been together since November 2000, they play and write like old school vets, no doubt a result of the extensive musical training and experience that each member brings to the band (keyboardist Brendan Quinn was trained by a nun!!!). It is this musical adeptness that allows them to write musically complex yet catchy, head-nodding tunes. Based out of Halifax and summering in Toronto, this band has been rather difficult to catch live unless you’re lucky enough to live in one of those city centers. While nothing can really compare to their live show as they spice it up with constant improvisation and random tidbits (i.e. nursery rhymes and Super Mario Bros. music), a recent twelve-song demo can wet the appetites of those who have yet to see them. Look out for these kids ‘cause they’re about bust your shit!

Contact PDQ at contact_us@pdqmusic.ca and check out the site at www.pdqmusic.ca
- J Bizness


Every New Place - 2004


Feeling a bit camera shy


pdq is redefining rhythm and blues.

Four talented musicians, songwriters, and distinct voices combine, contrast and compliment each other to create one unique sound. Be it rock, jazz, blues or funk, pdq doesn't hesitate to draw from a wide range of musical influences.

Known for their strong live performances, the band's shows are driven by heavy grooves, positive energy and a relaxed atmosphere. Through interacting with each other and the crowd, pdq pulls the audience into every performance.

pdq successfully completed its first month-long tour in September 2003 and looks forward to a second tour in 2004. pdq's upcoming tour will promote their new album due for release in early 2004.

pdq has been playing the Halifax club scene for the past three years and is now based in Toronto. With two independent releases, they use their live shows to showcase an always-growing repertoire of original material to a constantly expanding fan base.

Over the last three years, pdq has had the opportunity to collaborate with some talented artists. pdq's song, "Long Grass," appears in the soundtrack to Canadian filmmaker Scott Simpson's feature film, "Touch and Go." As well, 2002 found pdq recording material at SoundMarket Studio (Halifax) with assistance from producer Terry Pulliam (produced Sloan's "Smeared").

pdq draws the listener in and leaves them wanting more. Eagerly writing, recording and touring, pdq always looks forward to new sounds, fans and places.