Sparrows
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Sparrows

Toronto, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2011 | INDIE | AFM

Toronto, Ontario, Canada | INDIE | AFM
Established on Jan, 2011
Band Alternative Punk

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The best kept secret in music

Press


Toronto, Ontario's Sparrows may be on their third incarnation, but you wouldn't know it to hear the band's music. Despite all the turnover, the group have maintained their core sound, which melds the aggression of post-hardcore with dream pop. That consistency comes from the sold original member, frontman Dan Thomson. "My favorite bands marry the dynamics of quiet and loud." he says. "Any band that does that can effectively have a huge impact." Even with the revolving-door lineup, Thomson is hopefulSParrows can take incremental steps towards international renown. "The point is to never get way ahead of yourself." he says. "We never think 'We're going to be the foo fighters!' We just want to be the best we can" - Alternative Press


While more people argue over what is or isn’t “punk” or “emo,” the definition of post-hardcore has morphed throughout the 10 to 15 years nearly just as much as those musical trigger words. Fugazi was post-hardcore in the ’80s; Quicksand and Hot Water Music were post-hardcore in the ’90s; Thursday and Silverstein were post-hardcore in the ’00s, and now, bands like Pierce The Veil and Dance Gavin Dance get the label. There’s a throughline there if you really study it, but the nice thing about a band like Sparrows is they don’t lock themselves into just one decade’s worth of evolution. On their new EP, Dragging Hell, the songs bounce between soaring instrumentals that could’ve been from Moneen’s The Red Tree to howling vocals that are a cross between Geoff Rickly and Davey Havok. The band doesn’t limit themselves to the self-imposed restrictions of a pop song, either, with three of the EP’s four tracks stretching past five minutes, and one cracking six. it’s post-hardcore without pretense or apologies, and it’s definitely worth a listen. Frontman Dan Thomson comments:

“I’d be lying to say I wasn’t nervous to finally have people’s ears on ‘Dragging Hell,’ but I’m also really excited to see how these new songs hit people. It’s almost like being able to rid myself of the demons that were a part of making this record, and move on to the excitement of playing them live.”

Sparrows’ Dragging Hell EP will be released August 28 on New Damage Records and can be pre-ordered here. - Substream Magazine


We’re pleased to bring you the premiere of Sparrows‘ new track “References To The Dead.” The song is taken from the band’s upcoming EP, Dragging Hell, out August 28th through New Damage Records.

Band member Dan Thomson comments on the EP:

“‘Dragging Hell’ has been a long time coming for us. And it’s almost a relief to have these songs coming out, in the best way possible. The time that surrounded the writing of these songs was one of the darkest times in my life, and it definitely comes out in the songs, both lyrically and musically.”

Tour Dates:
Aug 6 – London, ON – Call The Office
Aug 7 – Indianapolis, IN – The Hoosier Dome
Aug 8 – Bloomington, IN – Meat Lodge
Aug 9 – Louisville, KY – Spinelli’s
Aug 10 – Knoxville, TN – Longbranch Saloon
Aug 11 – Atlanta, GA – Masquerade
Aug 12 – Columbia, SC – Conundrum Music Hall
Aug 13 – Apex, NC – Masonic Lodge
Aug 14 – Beckley, WV – Wildfire Saloon
Aug 15 – Baltimore, MD – CCAS
Aug 16 – Philadelphia, PA – Kung Fu Necktie
Aug 17 – New York, NY – Kings County Saloon

Sparrows is a post hardcore band currently residing in Toronto, Canada. Their sound has just as much to do with sheer volume as is does with delay and dynamics. Consistently obsessed with outdoing themselves, Sparrows have continued to push the boundaries of their sound and their pedal boards.

Since their inception, Sparrows’ focus has always been on the live show. Getting out on the road was a top priority, and it shows with how relentless their touring schedule has been. Through four years, and two vans, Sparrows has been able to criss-cross North America, destroying any stage that was allowed to them. They’ve also grabbed coveted spots on many festivals, including SXSW, NXNE, CMW and Ottawa Bluesfest. It was through all that touring, that Sparrows was noticed by Alternative Press, who named them one of the “100 bands you need to know” for this year. The band’s third time in the print giant, Alternative Press also coined Sparrows as “If Moneen sounded evil”. - New Noise Magazine


Ottawa quartet Sparrows are no doubt influenced by some of their Canadian emo forefathers—it’s quite easy to pick out elements of Grade, Moneen and Choke on their eight-song debut LP, Cold Ground. But this isn’t mere mimicry; the band hack and slash their way through Daniel Thomson’s ominous lyrics, adding an intensity and ferocity reminiscent of fellow Canadians Sights & Sounds (coincidentally also the name of a song on Cold Ground), latter day Planes Mistaken For Stars (“Belly Full Of Hell,” coincidentally also a PMFS song title) or their massively underappreciated countrymen in the Stickup, who we once described as “if Moneen sounded evil.” That adage fits Sparrows perfectly, too. Here’s to hoping they can keep things together and deliver more heart-pounding records like this in the future. - Alternative Press


“This band would’ve been huge in 2003,” says AbsolutePunk’s own Ryan Gardner on Sparrows’ debut full-length Cold Ground, and I doubt he’s incorrect. The album would certainly fit better in the year of War All the Time, The Artist in the Ambulance, and The Used than today’s breakdown-happy scene.

The opening riff of “Coffin Fever” grabs you by the throat, an explosion of noise. The song’s chorus slows down, and in less than a minute you’ve seen two sides of Sparrows: they can be loud, but they also know how to pull back. This is demonstrated again in “Apostasy,” as the song builds, only to trick the listener with a quiet verse. But when the song finally begins to lull, you’re jarred by vocalist Dan Thompson’s startling screams. “Sever Your Roots” again shows off the band’s soft-to-loud style and features a memorable chorus and pseudo-breakdown two minutes in. “Belly Full of Hell” (intentional Planes Mistaken for Stars reference?) is probably the band’s most accessible track, and its outro shows some discernible Moving Mountains influence. Following a gritty instrumental interlude anchored by Rem McLeod’s drumming is “Sleepwalker,” a definite standout on the album that finds Thompson shouting, “I will fight for breath!” in my favorite moment of the record. Closer “Static Prevails” (I like that album, too!) begins predictably, being the slowest song on the record. It gets slightly louder about a minute in, only to explode into a screamed climax at 2:40. As good as they are in the more serene and ambient sections, it’s in moments like this that Sparrows shine as a band, when the music is loud and heavy and Thompson is screaming his throat raw.

Cold Ground is a welcome release in my post-hardcore collection. For a new band, Sparrows know what they’re doing. They get it. Cold Ground is really good - I think they can release something great next. - Absolutepunk.net


Sparrows' debut release is a five-song EP produced by Moneen's Kenny Bridges. The Ottawa, ON threesome use their 24-minute introduction to showcase myriad late' 90s/early '00s influences, with moments sounding reminiscent of Small Brown Bike, Sparta and, of course, Moneen. But it's not a game of copycat they're playing. They use the foundation of the bands before them to begin building something new. "Shook Them Bones" is the EP's high point, with aggressive vocals, chunky guitars and a very sweet, melodic bridge. The screaming sections are a bit shaky, but they're heading in the right direction when it comes to blending melody with aggression. "Salesman at the Pulpit, Congregation of Sheep" is their most forceful track, a pointed attack against the Church, which comes across strong and with conviction. While they're a few steps away from building something their own, Sparrows have positioned themselves to do just that. - Exclaim!


Okay, I definitely stole that title off of Sparrows facebook page somewhere in the past, but it's fucking awesome so of course you can understand why I'm Robin Hood'ing it.
Also, they actually are 'back in town' in a they-have-a-new-5-song-EP sort of way. It's called Goliath, which is funny because I've been watching a lot of Gargoyles (TV show) lately and could totally see Goliath gettin' down to some of these tunes, like especially when he's up against Demona when she turns into a huge bitch nshitt.

They have an angst'y post hardcore rock sound to them with few enough break downs for me to enjoy it, love it even... sort of Moneen-like, and with many reminders of bands like Boys Night Out, Thrice, and From Autumn To Ashes ... if those 3 could ever be allowed in the same comparison. Really though, without any of the bullshit growling superbreakdowns in From Autumn To Ashes, and without all the clappy-breakdowns of BNO, and with the intent of the more recent but not latest Thrice...
uhhh... still there?
Let's just focus on the fact that I actually love them.
There's something in the singers voice, something that makes the music feel like a rather large penis inserting itself into my earlobe and screwing me slowly for the span of the 3 songs, approximately 13 minutes. EARGASM!
His voice is all too familiar, I almost feel as if I've been listening to it for years. Maybe I'm just reminiscing about the days when I listened to this type of music a lot more frequently and had a lot more passion for it. I realize now that I've drifted away from that style a bit lately... maybe these guys will help bring me back...
I'm already craving some Moneen timez.

bring back my bonnie to me, to me! wah!
- Music She Blogged


Goliath is the debut EP of the admittedly “delay obsessed” rockers from Canada known as Sparrows. The 5 song EP was produced by Kenny Bridges of Moneen, who is cited on Sparrows Facebook as being one of their influences. Sparrows are probably a band you haven’t heard of before, but if you’re into bands like Moneen, Therefore I Am, and Moving Mountains I’m sure you’ll enjoy this EP. The sound of Sparrows is also extremely reminiscent of the 90’s and early 2000’s indie/emo/rock scene – which is something I loved.

Stand-out tracks on this EP are the emotion filled and hard-hitting Shook Them Bones with the repeated “So long, I’m gone, goodbye”, definitely a great song to sing along to, and also the powerful Salesman at the Pulpit, Congregation of Sheep (which reminds me the most of this early 90’s 2000’s sound) which yells resonance at the end of the song with the lyrics “If there is a God, he gave up on me”.

Goliath is 5 tracks full of heavy, distorted, pedal driven guitars accompanied by some solid bass-work, talented drumming, aggressive and emotion filled vocals and some angsty lyrics to go along. Whilst listening to this EP the first time through I was actually reminded of Taking Back Sunday’s early 2002 and 2004 albums Tell All Your Friends and Where You Want To Be – some people may not make this connection, but the EP makes me think back to my early teens when I was just discovering all of this new music that changed my life – so props to Sparrows for reminding me of that. - Cool Try


I was first introduced to Canadian rock outfit Sparrows when I reviewed their debut EP Goliath and now I’m listening to them again to review their latest 3 song EP titled Ghosts From Our Past. Ghosts From Our Past still features a very familiar sound which I associate with the 90’s and early 2000’s indie/emo/rock scene and it still does them justice.



This release is only 3 songs long but each song is able to offer something a bit different. The first track, It’s Always Sunny in Bramalea, is a whopping 5:40 in length (it would very much suit fans of bands like Thrice and Thursday) and features guest vocals from Chris Hughes of Moneen. The middle child of the EP, Hit The Kill Switch, is my personal favourite of the 3 songs. Hit The Kill Switch features vocals that are much more consistent, clear and easier to understand which are accompanied by some beautiful clean, heavy and melodic guitar work. With a bridge section that screams, “Don’t tell me how to stand, don’t tell me how to fight. Don’t tell me where to stand, don’t say that it’s all right. Don’t tell me how to stand, don’t say it. Goodbye.” I wouldn’t be surprised if this particular song becomes a highlight for their fans to get involved with at shows. Sparrows’ first release Goliath also portrayed some very strong and hard-hitting rhythmic work coming from the drums and this time around this talent is most noticed in the final track Hop the Gates to the Cemetary. This final track starts hard with the drums and continues with this theme throughout the song; they’re hard not to notice but it does work well for the track.



Overall I think this release is a good follow up to their debut release. Ghosts From Our Past is still just as aggressive, emotion filled and hard-hitting as what was offered in Goliath but you can notice a bit more maturity already in their sound and direction. I still stand by my first review in which I compared their sound to that of early releases from Taking Back Sunday and I’m looking forward to hearing more releases from Sparrows in the future. - Cool Try


Sparrows is a band that you’ve most likely haven’t heard of before. Even though they’ve toured quite a lot in support of their debut release a five-song EP produced by Moneen’s Kenny Bridges titled Goliath. This is a shame on many levels, especially when doing a Google search for these guys they’re basically non-existent in the search results, this is most likely due to the fact they share a very similar name to a Canadian blues-rock band from the 60's called The Sparrows.

The Ottawa, Ontario trio spare no time showcasing 24 minutes of pure 90s/early 2000s influenced goodness. With material that sounds very reminiscent of circa 2002 Moneen with some Sparta influence thrown in here and there for good measure, don’t be fooled though Goliath takes those influences and creates something that is entirely their own. In the sea of heavily generic music, Goliath is a breath of fresh air.

Intro track Teething starts off dark and slow, with guitar feedback and bass guitar before the punkesque vocals come roaring in like a soothing car crash. This is a really great start to the EP. I especially love the ending of this track, it’s so fucking chaotic with random noise and other chaotic elements thrown in.

Listening to Sparrows immediately takes me back to my angsty teenage days filled with copious amounts of punk and metal music. This is one hell of an eclectic release, even the production quality and mixing job on this album makes it sound like it was recorded in the early 2000's. The track Shook Them Bones was probably one of my favourites on the EP. The guitars are loud and big, the vocals are aggressive and straight to the point with a nice soft bridge included.

The lyrics are well thought out and feel almost personal, with lyrical gems such as “If there is a god, he gave up on me” in hard-hitting track Salesman at the Pulpit, Congregation of Sheep and the repeated line “So long, I’m gone, goodbye” being almost screamed in Shook them bones which is repetitive but feels personal and not at all tedious.

Another aspect of this album that many people will probably overlook is the amazing drum work of Marco Cellucci drummer and lead beard of the band. The drum delivery in Sleeping in the Seconds Between Breaths is flawless, and the final track on the album Get Miserable with drum work that sounds like something Riley Breckenridge of Thrice would be most likely write (that’s a huge compliment).

It wouldn’t be fair to mention the amazing drum work without mentioning the equally as great guitar work on this album (bass included). The riffs are mostly simple, but what makes them stand out is the fact that they legitimately sound like their were written in the late 90's / early 2000's when punk was still slightly alive and kicking.

This band is going to be big, hopefully big enough to the point where one day you do a Google search for Sparrows and their Facebook and Bandcamp profile come up in the results. Who says punk is dead? - Kill Hipsters


Discography

Goliath EP (2011 - Finish What You Started Records)
1.Teething
2. Shook Them Bones
3. Sleeping In The Seconds Between Breaths
4. Salesman At The Pulpit, Congregation Of Sheep
5. Get Miserable

Cold Ground (2013 - Broken Heart Records) 
1. Coffin Fever
2. Belly Full Of Hell
3. Apostacy
4. Sever Your Roots
5. Sights & Sounds
6. Sleepwalker
7. White Flag
8. Static Prevails

Dragging Hell (2015 - New Damage Records)
1. References To The Dead
2. Our Father, The Failure
3. Hit The Kill Switch & Silence The Storm
4. It's Always Sunny In Bramalea


Photos

Bio

Sparrows is a post hardcore band currently residing in Toronto, Canada. Their sound has just as much to do with sheer volume as is does with delay and dynamics. Consistently obsessed with outdoing themselves, Sparrows have continued to push the boundaries of their sound and their pedal boards. 

Since their inception, Sparrows' focus has always been on the live show. Getting out on the road was a top priority, and it shows with how relentless their touring schedule has been. Through four years, and two vans, Sparrows has been able to criss-cross North America, destroying any stage that was allowed to them. They've also grabbed coveted spots on many festivals, including SXSW, NXNE, CMW and Ottawa Bluesfest. It was through all that touring, that Sparrows was noticed by Alternative Press, who named them one of the "100 bands you need to know" for 2015. The band's third time in the print giant, Alternative Press also coined Sparrows as "If Moneen sounded evil".

On Dragging Hell, the Moneen comparisons are sure to continue. Kenny Bridges (of Moneen, and Sparrows' 5th member) was behind the board for this session, bringing Sparrows to their most epic sounding record yet. The long history between Bridges and Sparrows is at top form, with vocal cord destroying heaviness to lush, beautifully delicate whispers, mixing flawlessly.
With Dragging Hell's release on New Damage Records, Sparrows will be back doing what they do best, touring.

Band Members