The Real

The Real

 Markham, Ontario, CAN

The Real is a Toronto-based alternative rock band, with a diverse range of influences, a dynamic stage show, adaptable repertoire, relentless work ethic and members with unique and versatile skill-sets finely honed for the independent music scene. Take a listen, it won't hurt. I promise.


After more than a year of demos, pre-production, budget tracking sessions, fund raising, and favours
The Real have released their debut album: "Another First Step."

A self produced, independent release the record making process was truly hands-on - "Having invested considerable time, energy and let's face it money in to our post-secondary studies, I think we really wanted to undertake something that would make good use of those skills," says Justin. "Both Chris and I studied audio engineering and production and since we had been collaborating on music on and off for the past 10 years we figured we could try our hand at a completely self-produced project." The pair set out with a plan: write and demo 30 songs in their home studio, before even seeking other musicians to form a band - "We really wanted a planned and systematic approach to this band, we wanted to use the knowledge we'd gained from years playing music, and studying business and technical side to fast track the project, and try to avoid some of the pitfalls we had encountered in other projects." After a few months the initial songwriting period was complete and all that remained was some targeted networking to find the right players and complete the line-up.

"I suggested we try to bring Kendra aboard, we had been co-workers at a local music school," recalls Chris. "I knew that she was an excellent singer and pianist as well she brought another piece to the puzzle in that she was studying music in university." - a fine arts major at York University Ms.Brasz has since completed her degree. "Kendra really rounded out our group, our dynamic, and helped us pull our heads out of engineer/producer mode." - says Justin. When it came to help on the back end Justin reached out to some colleagues from school - "The first guy that came to mind for drums was Fil Smialek, hard-hitting, precise, the guy is a machine, I remember reading an article where Dave Matthews said that he just approached the best musicians in his town and asked if they would join his band, i figured I would do the same thing, who would have guessed they would say yes? When I asked Chris Evans to come aboard on bass we had a band consisting of 4 audio engineers and a music major!"

With songs and a line-up in place the band took to performing regularly - "we wanted to test the songs out on audiences, get a feel for which tracks were strongest, and improve those arrangements live. We narrowed down a track list, emptied our savings, sold some gear and got to work." The band reached out to industry contacts during the process with unexpected results: "We had incredible assistance with this record we worked with Brian Moncarz (Moneen, Pilot Speed), Alf Annibalini (Big Sugar, Danko Jones), Joel Kazmi (JackSoul) and even tracked at Metalworks on the Neve in Studio 1 thanks to help from Gil Moore (MW Studio Owner, Triumph)" all of these people went the extra mile to help us make our record on a razor thin budget."

The result is a 10 song trip through their experience with tracks ranging from seething alternative rock, classic and blues tinged numbers and even the introduction of some electronic production elements - "I reached out to a good friend of mine, electronic producer Quewin, for some programmed elements on one of our tracks, and he did such a good job we gave him a spot for a remix on the record." says Justin - "Overall we are very happy with all of the tracks on the record, we enjoyed the process and learned a lot I hope you enjoy."

Another First Step is now available on iTunes
and CD (available from the band) with artwork by Anthony Ventura (

Contact: Justin Idems - (416) 459-4166


'Another First Step' - 2013

Set List

The Real combine Cover and Original material that is always changing to better suit the crowd we are playing for.

We are able to play anything from a 30 minute set to a full evening of music.

Covers include artists such as:

Pearl Jam
Bob Dylan
The Watchmen
Jimmy Hendrix
The Black
Lynyrd Skynyrd
ZZ Top
Stevie Wonder

and many more....