The Royal Streets
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The Royal Streets

Waterloo, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2012 | SELF

Waterloo, Ontario, Canada | SELF
Established on Jan, 2012
Band Folk Rock




"The Royal Streets join The Meds for Album Launch Tour"

Fans will no doubt be pleased to check out the album launch shows in the province by The Meds tonight (Thursday, May 15) and Saturday, but they'll also get a nice introduction to a cool Waterloo, Ontario band, The Royal Streets. The group's debut Kings & Queen refers to the four guys-one woman lineup, with Algeron Friolet and Jillian Dowding sharing the vocals. Its sort of a folksy, happier version of July Talk, acoustic guitar songs with a couple of voices, beefed up with rock guitars and drums, but the campfire or coffee house is still there. Friolet takes the bulk of the vocals, Dowding joining in with responding lines and harmonies, although they do switch it up for couple including Ocean Toes, Dowding getting the quiet lead for the verses, before the guitars and drums get heavy for the chorus and Friolet puts in some muscle. Some Think sees the pair switching off on complete verses, a fine contrast, as Dowding gets the sweet part, Friolet the earthy bit.

Dowding has an interesting voice, suited to both the back-up job and the lead. On Wasting Time, she clips her syllables, slips in some you-oo-oo-oo-oo's, and the Friolet-less track sounds like the pop side of Feist. Friolet can speed things up, which lets the band stretch out and get louder. I'm liking this girl/guy vocal set-up, it's still not a common approach for groups, and never has been, but it does allow for a lot of variety on record and stage.

The Royal Streets and The Meds co-album launch tour hits The Tide and Boar tonight in Moncton, and Saturday May 17 the pair are at the Capital Complex in Fredericton. - Bob Mersereau

"The Royal Streets - Champagne Floats"

Waterloo, ON-based band the Royal Streets know that nothing rings in the new year like some bubbly, and they’re toasting 2016 with a brand new track titled “Champagne Floats.” You can hear the premiere right here at Exclaim!

Following the release of their debut album Kings & Queens and subsequent EP Story Weekend, the band spent most of last year on the road. They still managed to make time to hit the studio with producer Dan Hosh to write and record a sophomore full-length, though. Building on their folk-rock roots and incorporating more atmospheric influences, “Champagne Floats” is the first sampling of the new material.

Opening sparse and folksy, the song starts with melancholic piano lines and acoustic picking, but slowly swells into a showcase of vocal harmonies and lush, full-bodied instrumentation that extends well beyond the realm of a simple folk song.

The Royal Streets’ second album is due out in March, and you can catch them live on tour this winter. Scroll past the upcoming shows for your first listen to “Champagne Floats” below. - Sarah Murphy/Exclaim!

"The Royal Streets Evolving to Rockier Vibe"

It's been a good year for The Royal Streets. They returned from an eastern tour right in time to play to a big hometown crowd at the KOI Music Festival with their good friends July Talk.

Fans love it when The Streets come home.

The Waterloo-based band has toured much of Canada from Halifax and Montreal (Osheaga) to Jasper, Alberta.

After an eastern tour in 2013, they released their critically-acclaimed debut "Kings & Queen," adding keyboard player Julia Bannard for 2014 follow up EP "Story Weekend," both produced by Dan Hosh at Hamilton's Catherine North Studios (City and Colour). Now they are working on a new album to be released in early 2016 that will include special guest musician Tom Moffett (Soul Motivators) on trumpet.

"He is an excellent player and he grew up in Kitchener," says vocalist Jillian Dowding.

"Tom is the older brother of one of our good buddies back in high school days," adds guitarist Eric Stirtzinger.

"It is crazy how many connections you realize you have made by growing up," notes guitarist/vocalist Algernon Friolet. "It is great that we can capitalize on it now. It has really worked out, because Tom is a phenomenal musician," says Friolet, adding Moffett plays and tours with a number of different bands, including CBC's "Q" radio host/hip artist Shad.

Stirtzinger says the band has taken time with the new record to fully realize everything they wanted to do with it, from thinking of ideas to just trying stuff out.

"A lot of great albums have extra additions that really bring them to life," he notes. "We thought a trumpet would be good way to do that for us. And ... I think everything can be a little more horny," he jokes, as the other three burst into laughter.

"Keep that up and you will stay in the car," warns Dowding.

This sort of good-natured teasing is typical of band members Friolet, Stirtzinger, Dowding and guitarist Michael Demsey, who have also known each other for a very long time.

Friolet and Dowding (who write most of the lyrics) have an instinctive back and forth as they sing about the band's individual or collective life experiences. Think Hey Rosetta meets The Wilderness of Manitoba, and Whitehorse seasoned with a dual slow-mo sensual rap/drawl.

The Streets were recently back with Dan Hosh at Catherine North to record new songs, including the hardcore piano-laced heart-play "Vessel," yet-to-be-titled alt-folk/rock love-song "TBA," and dreamy slice-of-life speculation "Champagne Floats."

Friolet and Dowding meld their signature sound with the intuitive guitar finesse of Demsey. And Stirtzinger compliments with keyboardist Dammond and drummer Sam Keating. Like jazz and classical music, Streets songs now evolve through musical movements.

Friolet says their next album is all new material, with no tracks from transitional EP "Story Weekend," as the band continues toward a rockier/shoe-gaze vibe.

Demsey says their Starlight debut Holiday Classic with Ivory Hours and Long Range Hustle, is a benefit (with $2 from each ticket going to Canadian Cancer Society) because of a personal connection in the band.

"We have had some really good shows in Kitchener and Waterloo and the only reason for that is people coming out and continuing to support us," adds Friolet. "We remember playing shows to 15 people at the old Maxwell's. It is really cool to see what the band has become. We are thinking, what is a way that we can give back to our community that has been so supportive? This is one small extra thing, but every little bit helps." - Coral Andrews/The Record

"The Royal Streets at New Moon Folk Club"

I certainly haven’t had the chance to check out many live shows since the twins were born, but I did negotiate an evening out on Friday, and used it to check out the New Moon Folk Club offering of Royal Streets over on the south side.

I’ve never actually been to St. Basil’s before, which is what New Moon is using as a venue for their inaugural season. And I have to tell you, I was pretty impressed. These venues aren’t necessarily made for great acoustics, but the sound guy did a amazing job, and obviously the equipment they rented was pretty top-notch too – there was no horrendous echo, the sound was sweet and pure. And they had a hell of a turnout too, about 275 or so, with all of the tables pretty much full-up by the time I got there.

Now, I didn’t know a lot about Royal Streets heading into the night, heard a couple tracks online and that’s about it, but they definitely blew past my expectations for the night. I love it when a band has a male and female vocalist, the interchange and sweep between the two voices makes for some amazing dynamics, and that’s exactly what the band had in store for us. Add in some killer lead guitar, some sweet acoustic guitar from Algernon (one of the vocalists), some killer songwriting, and you’ve got what turned out to be a pretty magical night for everyone in the room. - New Music Michael


Champagne Floats (single) - Released January 7th 2016

Kings & Queen - Released March 6th 2014

Story Weekend - Released November 7th 2014



Based out of  Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, The Royal Streets have spent the last few years touring the Canadian folk-rock music scene. Following the release of their debut studio effort Kings & Queen, the band toured nationally including performance slots at Osheaga in Montreal and the Jasper Folk Festival. The Royal Streets concluded 2014 with the release of a 3-song EP titled Story Weekend, and spent the majority of last year at Catherine North Studios in Hamilton. On January 7th 2016, The Royal Streets released Champagne Floats, the first single from their second full length album, Steady Hands.

Band Members