Sunlit Ambush
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Sunlit Ambush

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"Invention Of Water CD Review"

Sunlit Ambush - Invention of Water
Review by Alex Young

Invention of Water may not reinvent the wheel, but the album definitely derives the depth of Sunlit Ambush’s range before the listeners’ ears and imagination. The band breaks through in shades of light and darkness on a variety of tracks that recollect experiences of both triumph and tragedy. When lead vocalist AJ Perry cries out “Don’t talk/don’t look at me/I am the boy/that will destroy/your life” he sounds like someone crying out for redemption rather than recognition. The song “Diesel Breath” creates a dense atmosphere of anarchy and self-analysis while the lyrics simultaneously speak of a monster attempting to mutate into a person they can at least try to respect. Sunlit Ambush has an alternative rock element that reveals the bands ability to derive sensitivity from its harsh sounds by harnessing emotion with an equally compelling audio assault. The songs “Co2” and “100 Plans” brand Sunlit Ambush as a band that isn’t afraid to be emotional and edgy at the same time to the point it hurts. However, no band is perfect, especially in their infancy. The alternative edge provided by Sunlit Ambush’s debut may light the way for deeper artistic ambitions, but let’s remember this stone is just starting to rock and roll. Although Inventions of Water can hold a listener’s interest, observing the bands progression from now on should prove to be the real point of intrigue in their career. With a solid rhythm section as well as the occasional adventure on lead guitar, the album also provides the soundtrack to a band building their own identity. The band effortlessly establishes their hard-edge on their debut album, but they may leave some listeners striving for a greater balance between the contrasts inside some of their songs. Inventions of Water does serve as a potent intervention to everyone that thought the alternative sounds of the nineties had segregated itself from today’s rock audience. The self-released record has all of the aggression of an authentic attempt at avoiding old cliché’s and creating an identity Sunlit Ambush can completely call their own. -

"Chartattack Q & A"

It's Wednesday, and that means another installment of Who The Hell Are You? where we profile indie bands, labels and organizations. This week, we're talking to Sunlit Ambush. If you'd like to see your musical entity featured in future weeks, write to with the subject heading "Who The Hell Are You?" or something to that effect.

Who are you?
Sunlit Ambush.

Where are you from?
We're currently based in Toronto, Ontario.

How did your group start?
The group was formed in 2003, sort of, in the rural wasteland of Lindsay, Ontario by Colin Crowley and Aj Perry, who both share guitar, vocal and songwriting duties. After a few shows and appearances on local indie Dogbus, Colin and Aj moved to Toronto and reinvented the group with drummer Jeremy Drury and bassist Drew Adams.

Describe your music in 100 words or less.
Guitar-based indie rock. Infectious outsider/loner music with heavy guitars and good songs.

How was your recent release recorded?
For our first record, called Invention Of Water, we hooked up with producer/engineer Mike "Dull" Langford (Evans Blue), who spent a year helping us record and mix the record to get it sounding like nothing a band as broke as ours has ever created. It was tracked in Mike's bedroom and at Mike Turner's studio, The Pocket, and then mastered by Joao Carvalho (Sam Roberts, Alexisonfire, Death From Above 1979) at Carvalho Mastering.

How committed are you to making music a full-time career?
Twice as committed as Zit Remedy, one and three-quarters as committed as Joe Dick in Hard Core Logo, and about on par with the awesome level of self-sacrifice that is Mark Wahlberg portraying Chris "Izzy" Stole in Rock Star.

What are your day jobs?
One of us is a tradesman, somebody does closed captioning, this one guy works at a beer store and another does post-production. We're only moonlighting as employable citizens, though.

Where can people find your music, either on the web or in stores?
Visit us at our website for all the goods. There's a MySpace page, too. You can waltz right into Criminal Records on Queen Street West in Toronto and pick up the album, or check any of the fine independent record stores in the GTA that sell unsigned product. Not in Toronto? We'll play your town this summer and you can always get the record at shows.

What's something we haven't asked that you'd like our readers to know about your band?
Nothing that unusual about us, as far as parrots and space aliens and STDs and stuff, but the album's called Invention Of Water. We're really proud of it, and you'll probably love it.

"Toronto's Sunlit Ambush Plans A Summer Charge"

Amidst the legions of young Toronto bands trying to scale the fray in an age where money and independent music are almost mutually exclusive, there exists an all too common style-over-substance approach.

Sunlit Ambush has a different strategy.

Heavy licks, stage presence and a work ethic many artists would do well to observe, the four-piece - founded by singers/guitarists Colin Crowley and A.J. Perry - is snowballing accolades and moving deliberately toward its second disc as the summer of 2009 approaches.

Sunlit released its first album, Invention Of Water, in 2007 and by the band's own admission perhaps a little earlier than it should have.

Not that the record's moody, driving guitars (reminiscent of say, At The Drive-In or Placebo) weren't promising, but in that case, perhaps the timing simply wasn't right.

Friends since 13, Crowley (pictured below, centre) and Perry (left) have been shaping the project through a series of lineup changes that only settled into place in 2008 with the addition of Andrew McMullen on drums and Aussie import Benji Axwel on the bass.

Add to that a frantic rehearsal schedule that a March set inside the 102.1 The Edge studio was more than testament to the effectiveness of and one has little trouble seeing this as a pivotal and possibly fruitful summer for these guys.

Certainly it will be one that includes the recording of a new record, which will feature superior production and presentation and Crowley says, "a more atmospheric sound.

"And we're just more focused right now," he adds confidently.

"So more focused and atmospheric," Perry jokingly tosses in.

But it makes sense in a way.

Asked if they practice a lot these days, Perry and Crowley merely exhale and nod simultaneously.

At the same time a listen to their record and attendance at a recent show is more than appropriate proof of the group's growth and the impressive, if gradual expansion of its sound.

And if you don't pay attention when the time is right, they might just blindside you with it.

- Aaron Miller (


Invention Of Water (2007)
TBA (Summer 2009)



Sunlit Ambush is Aj Perry, Colin Crowley, Andrew McMullen and Benj
Axwel. Based out of Toronto, Ontario, they've been building a dedicated
population of fans for their heavy and intense brand of indie rock, often
compared with acts as diverse as Biffy Clyro, Fleetwood Mac and
Smashing Pumpkins. With cathartic choruses and hard hitting rhythms
mixed with the astute and often heartbreaking observations of lyricists
Colin and Aj, the music is layered for an instant gratification followed
by sensations of introspection and longing. With sold out shows,
a sold out first pressing of their debut and a fast-growing body of followers,
the band is gunning to be a buzzed about live act for summer '09.

Colin and Aj started making music together almost as soon as they met
at age 13, and through half a lifetime of trading cassettes, driving around
aimlessly in their empty hometown and the odd appearance from out of
town bands, the two songwriters formed a plan. They relocated to Toronto
and started formulating their sound and aesthetic. Working with producer
Michael 'Dull' Langford, they created 'Invention Of Water' through months
of intense studio work. After several line-up changes, Aj and Colin met
with drummer Andrew McMullen (Leviride) and bassist / vocalist Benj
Axwel (Australia's Sleight Of Hand) and immediately focused the energy
and tension of the material into a powerful live show.

Kicking off 2009 with an over-capacity post new-years gig, Sunlit
Ambush is moving quick on their momentum. The re-release of their debut
"Invention Of Water" is in anticipation for their upcoming sophomore
release, with a satellite single arriving in summer. Whether appearing on
stage or off, they bring a refreshing attitude of unadulterated joy and
belief in their convictions, quick wit and loyalty to their mission.

April 2009