The Balconies
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The Balconies

Toronto, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2009

Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Established on Jan, 2009
Band Rock Rock


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"The Balconies - Testing the Waters"

Local indie pop trio take control of their resonance by hazing the line between classical and indie

Hailing from nearly every corner of the Ottawa indie rock kingdom, it appeared power pop band The Balconies had conquered hearts and minds when their earliest chords rang out here in 2008. Not to be put off by their subsequent move to Toronto, local support has been eagerly awaiting a follow-up to the 2009 self-titled LP that placed The Balconies on numerous "bands to watch" year-end lists. Well, the hour of that follow-up is nigh...

With a 7-inch record about to drop this week, the band is testing the proverbial waters for interest in the new album, set to hit record stores in the next couple of months. It's worth noting that the trio of Stephen Neville (vocals, bass), Liam Jaeger (drums) and Jacquie Neville (vocals, guitar) has not exactly been in hibernation between releases. Touring their debut to within an inch of its life over the past two years, the band also found time to compete in Live 88.5's 2010 Big Money Shot. Though they didn't walk away with the big prize, the little money shot representing second place was enough to get The Balconies a van, pay for the logistics of recording the anticipated sophomore effort and leaven the disappointment of narrowly missing the $150,000 first prize.

"Yeah, we had our hopes high, for sure," says Stephen Neville, reached over the phone from Toronto. "But it still ended up being a fruitful endeavour. We got a helpful prize and it should help us in the long run being affiliated with the station. Hopefully it will help get some of our new stuff on
the radio too."

Much has been said about the band's inception, a process simultaneous with their studies in music at University of Ottawa. But the transition from being classical music and theory students to working musicians wasn't seamless, with adjectives like "painstaking" and "laborious" peppering Neville's recall of the first writing and recording sessions. But the band's move to Toronto (a competitive hotbed of emerging bands), several years of hardscrabble touring and pressured experience of tightening up a set for the Big Money Shot have all contributed to an inchoate confidence - a belief in ability that should be adeptly communicated by the skills of well-known producer Jon Drew (Fucked Up, Tokyo Police Club), recruited to man the controls during the recent recording.

"It was awesome working with Carlin Nicholson from Zeus on our first album," says Neville. "But they're pretty busy with their own thing right now. It's definitely a nice change working with Jon Drew this time, because he has a very different musical background, a different technical approach. Drew comes, musically, from a punk or hard rock background, which is good because one issue we had with the last album was that it didn't capture the live energy that we have. We really wanted to get those hard-hitting drums and loud rock. It's all good to get the pop hooks and catchy riffs, but we also kind of like that done with a certain heaviness, a bit bigger."

Oddly enough - or not, perhaps, for a trio of classically trained musicians - The Balconies favour the intricacies of theory and composition just as much as they enjoy thrashing out on a beer-soaked stage somewhere. A side project for the group is an unusual intersection of the two, with semi-classical performances of their self-titled debut representing an intriguing side project.

"We're kind of in the works with this classical Balconies project," reveals Neville, "which is basically classical arrangements of songs from the last record. We're on different instruments, obviously, as I'm playing double bass, Jacquie is playing viola and violin and Liam is playing classical guitar. We've played a few shows in Toronto with that arrangement, and foresee doing some in Ottawa, maybe in the winter. It's funny, it puts a different perspective on things as people come to the concerts wanting to listen quietly. There are big differences between the two audiences: less dancing and more staring. It's cool."

"And it's kind of funny too, because it doesn't really seem like classical came before the rock concerts for us," explains Neville, "since, for all three of us, rock music and classical music has always been part of our lives and the two have never been two distinct things to me. I've always wanted to play music, whether it be in an orchestra or with friends in a band. Having had theory classes certainly helps for structuring song ideas, and gives us a common language to communicate with, but I think we always try and keep it feeling natural, leaving the energy there for songwriting."

The Balconies

w/ Sandman Viper Command, The Dirty Mags

At Mavericks (221 Rideau)

May 13

8 p.m., $10 - Ottawa XPress

"Album Review - Chromewaves Blog"

I’m not sure why it’s taking me so long to try and come up with words to describe The Balconies and their debut album – also called The Balconies and out September 15. It could be this epic nap that I woke up from a few hours ago but still haven’t shaken loose, or maybe it’s because whenever I start playing the record, that’s 37 minutes that I’d rather just sit and listen instead of write.

The Balconies stick to the tried-and-true power-trio format and on top of that, favour of a dry, in-your-face approach that eschews any sort of studio hijinks. They’re a confident crew, these Balconies, and why not? All three are superb musicians and guitarist Jacqui Neville has got a most impressive set of pipes, with power and expressiveness to spare but thankfully uninterested in showy over-singing. Sibling and bassist Steve Neville is an effective vocal foil, though I find myself wishing I wasn’t reminded so much of the B-52s’ Fred Schneider at points. Their songwriting is also at its sharpest when they plough straight ahead with the power-pop, all punch and vigor and demonstrating a knack for the not-so-obvious-but-indelibly-catchy hook. But even the lesser tracks have at least one riff, melody or moment to justify its place amongst the stronger numbers and oft times, they’re the ones that stick in the head the most. In fact, on the first few listens, I thought I was able to easily distinguish the standouts from the filler, but subsequent listens have blurred those distinctions significantly. What hasn’t changed, however, is the first impression – that The Balconies have turned out a cracking debut record and more than merit my – and your – attention.

Seeing as how they hail from Ottawa, it’s only natural that I Heart Music was first up with effusive praise for the outfit, which has been echoed by both Herohill and Dave Allen of Gang Of Four at Pampelmoose. There’s also an interview from earlier this Summer at BlogTO and a more recent one at Soundproof, both addressing the band’s upcoming move from Ottawa to Toronto.

I’m not sure if that’s already happened, but their live itinerary has them in town quite a bit in the next while regardless. They’re at the Horseshoe this Wednesday night with Everything All The Time and The Magic, then are doing a free show as part of the TARA Secret Sessions the evening of August 29 with The Books Elusive and Modernboys Moderngirls. Then they’re back on September 25 at Lee’s Palace for a release party throwdown with Oh No Forest Fires, Fox Jaws and Whale Tooth. Good times guaranteed. -

"Stepping Out with The Balconies"

Stepping Out
With The Balconies
By: Fateema Sayani, Citizen Special
Published: Thursday, February 28, 2008

Liam Jaeger (For the Mathematics) and Jacquie Neville (Jetplanes of Abraham) are suffering from a bit of big-band-itis.

The musicians, also a couple, have formed a side project called The Balconies with Neville's brother Steve, who played with his sis in Jacquie in the Kitchen.

The Balconies played their first show Feb. 2 and will return to Zaphod Beeblebrox on Saturday.

"We formed out of a desire to focus on our own songwriting, and for the refreshing feeling of being in a small band," Jaeger says.

Both of their larger bands are working on upcoming full-length albums.

Away from the studio, Jaeger and the Nevilles are hashing out grinding girl-guy tradeoff tunes that are a punky bag of sonics with bursts of sappiness. The melancholy mix will be the mark of The Balconies.

Consisting of University of Ottawa music students, the band is full of multi-instrumentalists. Jaeger is wrapping up his Master of Music degree and studies classical guitar performance. In The Balconies, he plays drums and sings. Jacquie Neville studies viola through the Bachelor of Music program -- when not singing and slinging her electric guitar. Steve Neville started the same program, studying double bass. He plays bass and sings in the trio. - The Ottawa Citizen

"Show Review - Feb. 7/09 Sneaky Dee's (Toronto)"

I had checked out the Balconies stuff before and thought it was pretty
cool, definitely requiring a couple of listens to get into completely
but, absolutely worthy of a look. After I interviewed the mighty Zeus
on Wednesday and heard Carlin Nicholson of that band rave about them, I
was certainly more curious to give them a closer listen and very stoked
to see what they were like on stage. The Balconies are indeed a very
cool outfit; the three-piece Ottawa group has a fairly distinct
post-punk aesthtic that calls to mind such disparate influences as Joy
Division, Portishead, Sleater-Kinney and the Smiths. Guitarist/Vocalist
Jacquie Neville has a powerful, deeply ethereal voice that is matched
every step by her precise, angular guitar work. Her clearly formidible
talent was also matched by Bassist/Vocalist Steve Neville who obviously
worships at the altar of Joy Division with obscene fervor in regards to
both of his musical duties and Drummer Liam Jaegar who plays with a
disjointed, complex style reminiscent of the Dismemberment Plan. With a
debut LP due at some point in the summer, the Balconies haunting,
lumbering brand of post-punk is a very impressive concoction ideal for
anyone with a taste for the best in 80s/90s indie-rock.

Posted by Curran on Monday, February 09, 2009 - Insectivora.Blogspot.Com

"New Discoveries: The Balconies"

bridging the atlantic
by: Bob Kimberley

Since moving to Toronto from Ottawa in February of last year, it's become apparent that few people outside of the Nation's Capital really give its music scene any credit. Apart from local heroes the Acorn, who have made some ground after signing to Paper Bag Records in 2006, there hasn't been much splash made since the days of Alanis Morissette despite having a handful (albeit a small hand) of very impressive and respectable bands.

Enter the Balconies, a young band comprised of three exceptionally talented and professionally trained musicians. The band is Liam Jaeger (drums), Jacquie Neville (guitar), and Steve Neville (bass), and they just this week played their first Toronto show, completely catching everyone off-guard with their refined product, especially those unfamiliar with their already impressive rock resumes.

It's been less than four months since Jaeger's former project, prized math rockers For the Mathematics called it quits, and already he's found an absolute keeper alongside girlfriend Jacquie, who also plays strings and sings back-up for the Ottawa-acclaimed zillion-piece orchestral rock band Jetplanes of Abraham. With her comes younger brother Steve who, like his bandmates, is studying music at nearby University of Ottawa, where Jaeger has just begun his MA in Classical Guitar while Jacquie finishes up her BA in Music Education.

The three split songwriting and vocal duty, each bringing to the table diverse and eclectic styles, influences, and impressive vocal range (particularly on the part of the female Neville). The result is a blossoming blend of classic and garage rock, catchy pop hooks, and bass lines which twist and groove through an unquantifiable list of influences and genres. While brother Steve holds that down, Jacquie manhandles the stratocaster like she was born to do so, and Jaeger is so natural behind the kit that you'd never guess that it's only one of an entire gamut of instruments that he's trained to totally own, as he's demonstrated both in his educational option and his bass-destroying history in FTM. The fact that they each play a host of different instruments (extremely well, I must add) helps to account for their ability to impress immediately, while still the baby stages of their development as a band.

To date, the band has only recorded three songs, each one of them has quality stamped all over them, though none come close to capturing their impact in a live environment. In the not-so-distance future, according to the male Neville, are plans to continue writing for a full-length record. In the meantime, I'll be bookmarking their myspace page with my eyes and ears on guard for any new material. - Bridging The Atlantic

"Album Review - Bridging The Atlantic Blog"

Long has it been since I've been so excited for an album release. Ever since I was introduced to the musical magic of The Balconies by BTA's own bbbykmbrly a year ago, I 've been waiting to get my hands on this.
For those who are new to this trio, The Balconies are comprised of Stephen and Jacquie Neville, and Liam Jaeger, who also happen to be brother/sister/boyfriend, respectively. Each being classically trained results in a truly fresh approach to indie rock; a genre who's development has become stagnant of late. The Balconies prove that the simplest sounding tracks are truly the most difficult to write. I'm glad to say that uOttawa, my Alma mater, has contributed in some way to improving the face of music, literally, this band is hot!
Take it, or leave it, but my prediction is that we will hear much more from The Balconies in the coming months. With tracks like "Lulu" and "Serious Bedtime", The Balconies will keep any party dancing; with bass lines that lead, guitar licks to compliment and irregular beats that keep dancers on their toes. Tracks like "Hollow Bones", "The Slo", and "300 Pages" showcase the bands ability to create paced tracks while keeping the listener engaged with Jacquie's dynamic voice. This album simple, yet complex, dynamic, yet accessible; a real formula for success.
I can truly say that The Balconies' eponymous album has been on repeat for the last month and that they are the most exciting band to come out of Ottawa in a long time.
The Balconies are set to officially release their first full-length September 15th and have planned a release party at Wakefield's Blacksheep Inn for September 12th. For those in Ottawa tomorrow (August 21st), check out The Balconies headlining day 2 of i(heart)music festival at Cafe Dekcuf. -

"Album Review -"

Ottawa's Balconies could easily fall between the cracks of Canada's teeming hordes of indie groups. With new groups churning out serviceable records at a breakneck pace, it's often hard to standout from the pack. Thankfully for them, and us, the buoyant enthusiasm of their live show bubbles over on their debut record.

The band are a brother-sister-boyfriend trio who aren't about to break any molds, but there's a forward propulsion to their music that never lets up. And it's the energy and passion that ultimately wins you over. All three members contribute vocals, but it's when Jacquie Neville takes those high parts, as on album highlight "300 Pages," that Balconies music really soars. - Chart

"Album Review -"


Ottawa's (by way of Toronto) best power-pop trio.


The Balconies (Self-released, 2009)


The Balconies' self-titled debut is, quite simply, one of the best albums of the year.


Of all the reviews of The Balconies' self-titled debut that I've read, there are two that really capture exactly how I feel about the album.

The first comes courtesy of Chromewaves, who said that the more you listen to it, the more it all seems to blur together into a giant ball of awesomeness (I'm probably paraphrasing here). It's not often that songs blurring together can be seen as a good thing, but a couple of listens to The Balconies shows that it can be. After all, on first listen, I had basically the same reaction -- that there were a couple of really amazing tracks, quite a few good ones, and one or two nondescript songs.

The more I've listened, though, the more I can't remember or figure out what songs I possibly would've slotted into the latter two categories. The whole album does seem to flow together, but in a way that's entirely positive. At some point, you just reach a stage where "Elephant Lamp" has to lead into "Ghost Fever", which in turn needs to be followed by "Hollow Bones", and you just can't imagine the songs going any other way. Basically, what I'm trying to say is that The Balconies have put together an album that defies any conventional wisdom that says the album as an artform is least for me, since I really can't imagine listening to the thing in any way other than front-to-back, beginning-to-end.

Of course, I feel that way because it's such an incredible collection of songs. To quote the other review that captures how I feel, "it's incredibly good". I don't know how kosher it is for me to be quoting myself, but, quite frankly, I don't care -- I felt that way when I first heard the full album, and I still feel that way. I still think that Steve Neville has a great, '80s-influenced voice that makes him sound a whole lot more mature and polished than he has any right to be at his young age. I still think that Jacquie Neville knows how to imbue her songs with a certain sultriness that makes songs like "Ghost Fever" and "300 Pages" slink along with an incredible combination of sexiness, catchiness and passion. I still think that Liam Jaeger holds it all together as drummer with a sense of rhythm that most other drummers would kill for. I still think that the production on this album is incredible -- the fellows in Zeus figured out how to record the band in a way that makes everything sound just right, without polishing them so much that it sounds too shiny. And, perhaps most importantly, I'm still blown away by how amazing the whole thing is; even weeks after I first heard the album, I have trouble getting it out of my head once one of the songs pops in (I mean, "Serious Bedtime" is, and it never loses that quality even after more listens than I can even count).

Honestly, I've listened to The Balconies' self-titled debut a good twenty times by now, and I still haven't noticed any flaws. About the only thing wrong with the whole thing is that the band recently relocated from Ottawa to Toronto...but it's hard to fault them for that. After all, when you're a band as talented as The Balconies are, you deserve to have your music heard by as many people as possible, and a city with approximately five million people (with easy access to millions more nearby) offers that a lot better than Canada's capital ever could. But this is definitely a case where one city's loss is the whole country's gain, and it won't be long until the rest of Canada realizes that.
- I Heart

"Audio Blood Press Samples"

Click link for samples of most recent press - Audio Blood


Still working on that hot first release.



The Balconies stand before you teeth bared, eyelashes batting, clothing and hair drenched in sweat. In the blink of an eye, the group has grown from a humble indie pop band to a leather-clad three-headed rock and roll monster, punctuated by 80s hair metal flair.

With Jacquie at the helm, backed by the rippling rhythms of Liam and Stephen, The Balconies continue to steamroll unsuspecting crowds throughout Europe and continental North America doing it heavier and sweatier each and every night (go ahead, try to outdo Jacquies deep rock lunges and swirling hair). Theyve shared the stage with Cold War Kids, Mother Mother, Devo, Sloan, Stars, Wide Mouth Mason, Big Sugar, Tokyo Police Club, Bad Religion, Rival Sons, and the Sam Roberts Band.

But The Balconies arent satisfied.

Theyre out for blood and hungry for fresh ears as indicated by the video for new single "The Slo, a cut from the upcoming album that premiered via ION Magazine (Canada) and AltSounds (UK) this fall. So far in 2013, The Balconies have taken Europe by storm; touring with Rival Sons, playing packed showcases at MIDEM in Cannes, Liverpool Sound City (UK), and Brightons The Great Escape in addition to North American dates at South By Southwest, Canadian Music Week, and North By Northeast. With a new full-length album recorded with legendary producer Arnold Lanni (Finger Eleven, Simple Plan, Our Lady Peace) on the horizon, and a fall full of relentless touring, the future looks bright.

So, if you fancy a riot of gargantuan rhythmic proportions, swing by. Oh, and be prepared this will get loud.