The June Gloom
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The June Gloom

Calgary, Alberta, Canada | SELF

Calgary, Alberta, Canada | SELF
Band Rock Pop


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This band has not uploaded any videos





The June Gloom are an indie-pop group formed by Cameron Purvis and PD Bennett (co-founders of the Calgary rock collective Wax Poets and prog-pop band The Spartans). Wonderland is a rock album with a touches of blues and country, similar to Old 97's (it's no wonder they toured together at one point). "Believe" is a pop-rock mid tempo number lead by a sharp guitar riff. "Cabrini-Green" is a blues influenced rocker with a Pink Floyd "Money" baseline that has a snarling power between verses. My favorites here are the catchy "Omaha" with it's sing along rhythm (supply your own hand-claps) and the poignant piano lead "Everything Is Grey" draws you into Purvis' narrative. The bouncy alt-country "County Song" and "Famous" has Purvis at his most Wilco-like, with full twang and a strong beat. Showcasing both styles perfectly I haven't found a bad track here, and it will encourage me to investigate The June Gloom's previous releases. - (UK)


This Calgary band has come out of left field to become of the more pleasant surprises I've run across lately. They rock - and pop - with a swagger that reminds me of big-name bands like Oasis and Jet. They start auspiciously with opener "Junkstar", complete with fake crowd noise (a la countrymen Sloan) and the rocker "Can't Slow Down", and pull off a couple of fine Beatlesque numbers in "Sgt. Strange" and "Sometimes". Other standouts include the driving (and clever) "Making Conversation" and the melodic midtempo "Vicki". These guys come as a breath of fresh air through your speakers, so make sure to check them out. - Absolute Powerpop, Florida, USA


On the phone from a bar in Moncton, N. B., where his band Wax Poets are in the middle of an afternoon sound check, Conrad Walz seems rather bagged.

The hard-working Calgary rockers haven't even released their self-titled debut CD yet -- that order of business will be taken care of Saturday night at the band's Marquee Room gig -- but the Wax Poets have already been on the road for three weeks. They travelled to St. John's, N. L., and now they're making their way back, playing every rock bar that would have them along the way.

"It's gruelling, for sure," says a sleepy sounding Walz as his fellow Wax Poets loudly tune up in the background. "We don't have those rock star luxuries as of yet."

One gets the impression that this group doesn't exactly behave like choir boys on the road either, which might be contributing to Walz's glaze.

In the liner notes for their debut self-titled CD they dedicate the disc to, among others, a "psycho stripper at The Roadhouse in Golden, B. C." and "the (expletive) in Canmore who stole and burned Conrad's truck."

The Canmore incident went down following a post-gig bash at which Walz's vehicle disappeared, the singer's truck found down the road the following morning, torched. Walz firmly believes the culprit was at the party that evening, which leads us to believe the Wax Poets may have partying with a solid lot.

As for the misadventure in Golden, the band had been sharing a stage with a stripper that night who later joined them back at the hotel only to lose her mind when she got there. "I don't remember what was said or done, but it ended with her pelting us with various food items and spraying our hotel room down with a fire extinguisher," Walz says. "The night didn't end well. . . . The RCMP were called and the festivities came to an end."

But for whatever shenanigans the Wax Poets get up to, this is a band that's seriously dedicated to its music.

The Wax Poets' debut disc is an energetic, infectious collection of roots rock and power pop tunes which perfectly reflect the band's shared influences.

"It all comes back to The Beatles and the Stones and then branches out from there," says Walz. "Cheap Trick and Kiss. XTC. We're like The Cars meets AC/DC."

A big part of Wax Poets' pop-rock precision comes from the fact all four members of the band are singers and songwriters, adds singer-guitarist Randy Hutchings, who get on the phone after Walz.

"The unifying thing is, we're all admirers of a great pop song," Hutchings says. "It doesn't matter who records it. . . . Conrad's more of a Stonesy rootsy player, but he shocked me on the road when he said that as a kid his favourite band was ABBA. . . . I'm into a sort of Jayhawks meets Elliott Smith thing. . . . And Cam (Purvis, guitarist, bassist and pianist), his favourite group of all time is the Bee Gees. He really likes The Cars as well, and Pink Floyd. Our drummer (Paul Bennett), he's a writer, too."

When the Wax Poets aren't working together, all four members of the band are dedicated to various side projects, most notably Hutchings' solo gig and Walz with his other band, Conrad Walz and The Wrecking Ball.

Hutchings stresses that the members' other gigs won't distract them from their work with Wax Poets. This is a band, he believes, that has major potential.

"Moe Berg from The Pursuit of Happiness has already said he wants to produce our next record," Hutchings says. "I actually became friends with him on Facebook. . . and when we played in Toronto I gave him a CD. Two days later, he Facebooked me again and just raved about it. . . . I think that's a pretty good sign. . . .

"I believe there's no reason why this band shouldn't be playing much bigger venues and hopefully, in the next year, we'll be on the same level as a Matt Mays or a Sam Roberts.

"I think we're making the right connections and we're on the right path." - Calgary Herald, Calgary AB, Canada


"Well-written and extremely tight. They seem to love what they do and it oozes confidence." - CBC Radio 3, Toronto, ON, Canada


Calgary's Cameron Purvis has been consistently putting out one power pop/rock release after another, be it under his own name or as Wax Poets, featured here early last year. Purvis's latest project is The June Gloom and their debut Wonderland is one of 2010's best. For the unfamiliar, the most straight-up comparison is a slightly mellower Oasis or Jet, and here "Believe" is the equal or the better of those band's midtempo tracks, "Everything is Grey" stands up to "Don't Look Back in Anger" or "Look What You've Done", and "Lover" rocks with swagger. But what sets this apart as an advance on Purvis's previous releases are tracks like "Cabrini-Green", a song about the infamous Chicago housing projects, the wonderfully nostalgic "Swimming Song", and the catchy could-be-a-hit "If I Had a Bike". With this kind of track record, whatever Purvis wants to call his next project is fine with me - as long as he lets us know the name so we can find it. - Absolute Powerpop, Florida, USA


Local band the Wax Poets chat about The Beatles, their hometown and the long road to musical renown
By Richard Saad

Randy Hutchings and Conrad Walz, two members of the band the Wax Poets, sit around Walz’s living room waiting for drummer Paul Bennett to show up. The fourth member, Cameron Purvis, phones from Winnipeg and waits patiently on speakerphone. Bennett, they say, is usually late. “What do you know, our drummer can’t keep time,” says Hutchings, as he and Walz share a laugh.
To break the silence, Walz looks over to Hutchings and says that he heard their song, “Can’t Slow Down,” on the radio this morning. Hutchings doesn’t seem all that surprised. “Every time I turn on the radio, I hear one of my songs,” says Hutchings, the band’s guitarist, as he turns back to his laptop resting on the side table.
“I still turn it up when I hear it, though,” Walz says, laughing. Purvis, the bass player, on speaker phone, jokes that every time he hears their songs on the radio, “it’s like a gentle massage.”

Since forming in January of 2007, the indie rock band from Calgary has been getting an increasing amount of radio play on college stations and the CBC. They just recently finished up their Canadian tour and released their self-titled debut album. The band has played consistently in bars and clubs across the city and even opened for the Violent Femmes at Flames Central.

The album has been generating positive reviews from both mainstream and underground sources. It was hailed by the Calgary Herald’s music critic, Heath McCoy, as, “an energetic, infectious collection of roots rock and power pop tunes,” and FFWD Weekly proclaimed their harmonies as “Beatles-esque.”
“We’re proud that we’d be compared to anyone like that,” says Purvis. “I don’t know if we live up to it, but it’s a compliment.” The quartet combines infectious melodies and four-part harmonies over energetic guitars and pulsing drums. “We have a distinct pop sound, which we like,” Walz says.

This past November and December they set out on their first cross-Canada tour and drove from Calgary to Newfoundland in 30 days. It’s something they are proud of. “This was the first serious tour for all of us,” Bennett says. “Next time we’ll know a little more and it’ll be even better and smoother the second time around.” Purvis adds, “Touring was a lot of work.”

The hard work is paying off. The constant touring has resulted in more interviews, more radio play and more fans at their gigs. “We got more hits on our MySpace page after we came back from touring than Sloan had,” Hutchings said, with just a touch of pride at beating the long-established Canadian rock group.
Currently, the band is not signed to any record label. They produced and financed their debut album independently and have already sold out their first batch of pressed CDs. When asked how many CDs they’ve sold, Hutchings replies with a smirk: “Well under a million.” They don’t see that as a bad thing, though. In fact, Walz sees it as an opportunity to keep getting better.

Purvis agrees: “Bands who are signed to a record deal don’t magically spring out of nowhere. They work hard to get noticed and that’s what we’re hoping to do.”
Being an unsigned rock band in Calgary has its benefits, the band says. Purvis explains that the Wax Poets had the good fortune of starting up during a time when the city was willing to embrace independent music. “It’s a great advantage to play here because there’s a good mixture of music fans that like to take risks and come out to see bands they’ve never heard before,” Purvis says. “With less diverse cities, it’s usually the opposite.”

This diversity is best illustrated with the band’s two favourite venues: Flames Central and The Gateway. Walz says that while the crowd at Flames Central is more diverse, with young and old music fans alike, The Gateway at SAIT is smaller and attracts more of a college contingent. For the next couple of weeks, the band will try and find quiet time to write songs for their second album. They plan on touring again this year—in the summer. - Where Magazine, Calgary AB, Canada


"Hints of yearing rock acts like Big Star and The Replacements and the driving power-pop of NRBQ and Rockpile" - The Chronicle-Herald, Halifax NS, Canada


An upfront and upbeat blend of melodies, harmoies, guitars and drums from The June Gloom, creating your standard indie-pop record: Wonderland. Try track 3, with a creative, beat-driven bass line, guitar flourishes and some chorally-sung verses. - WLUR 91.5FM, Lexington VA, USA


A band photo shoot last year ended with one member of The Wax Poets fracturing his ribs, one puking over a balcony and another spraining his ankle chasing rabbits. Alcohol was obviously not involved. Reclining on a futon in a Calgary apartment, the gang of four power-poppers is drinking tea and chomping Halloween candy.

“What kind of band is this?” asks guitarist and bassist Conrad Walz, when he notices how mild-mannered his fellow musicians are acting. “I must have the wrong band here.”

The Wax Poets are a meat-and-potatoes rock ’n’ roll band. At their tour kickoff show on Thursday, November 13 at Broken City, expect asses on the dance floor. Despite housing four songwriters, there are no mopey, sharing-too-many-feelings moments in their music — The Wax Poets are about crunchy, three-minute songs that make you shake it.

“We put buzzers on the seats,” says band multi-instrumentalist Cam Purvis. “We got songs that people remember…. A lot of our songs sound like songs you’ve heard before. Probably because we ripped them off. People are desperately trying to remember the words to the song that they know they’ve never heard before.”

While their self-titled debut, due out December 13, features Beatles-esque harmonies and guitars, it isn’t stuck in one era or sound. These melody makers also switch up vocals between three members, making the record a mix of styles and personalities.

“Everybody wants a front man,” says Walz.

“These are the days of the American Idol,” echoes Purvis. “People want a ‘singer,’ but I always found that a bit boring. I like bands that have shades of other people.”

A fall 2006 gig at the now-defunct Tio’s on 14th St. launched the band on the path to madness. A few drinks inspired the band to go outside, playing to passersby. Cue a complaining old lady, and you end up with Purvis barricading a phone booth to avoid a call to the police.

“These guys had a plan that the way to get noticed in Calgary is to get arrested,” Walz says of his bandmates. “It’s kind of an old theory, but it’s worked in the past. I didn’t know it was gonna start that night.”

Sadly, the band avoided having their mug shots taken that night.

“It’s hard getting arrested on [14th St.] as a band, when that whole area is covered in crack whores,” says Hutchings.

Competition aside, it was only a few months later (and after a trip to rehab for one member) that the group found itself onstage at Flames Central. There, The Wax Poets opened for The Violent Femmes and The Old 97’s. These were the band’s third and fourth shows.

“It made us feel real good for two shows,” laughs Purvis. “It gave us some credibility, and we’ve tried to destroy that ever since.”

“I think it gives you the gumption to keep moving forward,” says Hutchings. “If you keep playing shitty bar gigs all the time and nobody shows up, you probably might go ‘Fuck it, I don’t wanna do this anymore.’ But when you do something like this, it makes you think, maybe we got something here.”

They’ll find out if they have what it takes when they hit the road. A rental van full of gear, CDs and little sleep between gigs awaits them. Having escaped other cities without their truck (it was torched) while being pelted by bananas, hot dogs and a jar of salsa, the band is always ready for mayhem.

“It’s because we’re always drunk,” Hutchings says. “What’s a rock ’n’ roll band without a bit of mayhem here and there? Once it’s full-time tea, I think I’m out.” - FFWD Weekly, Calgary AB, Canada


Cameron Purvis' (Wax Poets) latest project is The June Gloom and this, their debut is a jangle-fest of the highest order! "This is so full of good songs that somehow manage to be both fun and sweet. Great pop songs perfect for either air-guitar posturing or merely to sing along with make this album instantly memorable! Great tunes written to make you smile and tap your feet!""Kool Kat Musik, Sewell, New Jersey, USA - Kool Kat Musik, Sewell NJ, USA





THE BEST PLACE TO BEGIN IS AT THE ROADHOUSE IN GOLDEN, BC. FOR THIS IS WHERE THE BAND WAS ATTACKED BY A PSYCHO STRIPPER FROM HELL. After being pelted violently with bananas, hot dogs and a large jar of salsa, they were finally choked out of their hotel room when the culprit unloaded a fire extinguisher on them. The local RCMP were of little help but the band still made it out of town alive. Cameron Purvis and PD Bennett have never been back to Golden but they've been everywhere else.

They formed The Wax Poets in Calgary in 2007 and immediately began playing shows with big name bands such as The Violent Femmes, The Old 97's and Spirit Of The West. Their first studio album was released in late 2008 and the tour that ensued took them across the continent in the dead of winter. A tour which resulted in a string of successful gigs in some of Canada's best rooms including The Horseshoe Tavern in Toronto (a gig for which Bennett arrived on-time after a harrowing 210km/h drive from Montreal). Their heater died in Fargo, North Dakota on a bitter cold December night and, after one member narrowly escaped arrest at the border, their vehicle finally quit in Winnipeg.

Born in Calgary, it was a musical family from Winnipeg that Bennett grew up in. He began playing in bars with his dad and brother at a young age and quickly became a professional, proficient rock drummer. Songwriter Cameron Purvis was born in Cranbrook, BC (just down the road from Golden) and began playing guitar and singing in bands at 13. He spent several years in Guatemala playing in cafes and bars before ending up in Calgary where he met and began working with Bennett.

Both as The Wax Poets and The June Gloom, they have received great press across Canada, even scoring the Track of The Day spot on CBC Radio 3's New Music. The Halifax Chronicle-Herald described them as having "hints of yearning rock acts like Big Star and The Replacements and the driving power pop of NRBQ and Rockpile." A power-pop act indeed they are and their music can be described as Cake meets Fountains Of Wayne meets Pink Floyd. Two of their discs, "Foolsgold" and "WaxPoets" made the Best of 2009 list on, the latter edging out even Bruce Springsteen!

Their newest release, Wonderland, was recorded and co-produced by Craig Newnes, Calgary's most talented sound engineer and finished up by mastermind Richard Barron at Sonora Recorders in Los Angeles. Since its release in September, 2010, it has received a pile of positive reviews and has made its way to audiences throughout the U.S. over the airwaves. The album's lead song, "Cabrini-Green" has recently become a favourite on indie radio landing The June Gloom in the local college charts. With a tour planned for early 2011,The June Gloom show no signs of stopping here - nor in Golden, BC for that matter.