Gig Seeker Pro


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

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada | SELF
Established on Jan, 2012
Band Rock Garage Rock





The Yips are my favourite Ottawa band for good reason. I’m a sucker for grimy, scuzzy garage rock and they take that sound and filter it through an even darker lens. Kerri’s vocals are piercing and unrelenting – there’s no escaping her, especially when she’s belting her lungs out to everyone bold enough to endure the maelstrom of human flesh whirling around the front of the stage. The band brings that aesthetic and distinct sound (which has an eeriness woven into it) that caught the attention of many, including me, on The Yips EP (2013)." - (April 2014) -

"Review – “Air Loom” – The Yips"

"The Yips play startling music. They live in Ottawa, a pattern I’m beginning to notice amongst provocative rock and roll music here in Central Canada. Their intial EP sunk its teeth deep into the back bacon of Canadian music criticism, and this year’s album Air Loom appears likely to storm the hearts and minds of just as many garage rock warrior obsessives." (April 2014) - Grayowl Point

"Ottawa Explosion Day 3: Fresh Snow, The Yips and Del Bel at St. Alban’s Church"

One of Ottawa’s oldest churches, St. Alban’s, played host to the eery and them ambient Friday night June 21.

Titled HOLY SMOKES!, the show was put on in partnership with the Arboretum Arts Festival & Wavelength Toronto.

Ottawa’s The Yips brought their dark and dancey rock to the party Friday night. Their set was jam packed with things to write about, from standing on the amps to a moshing bass player, and that is the mild stuff. During their awesome song, ”PGLM,” two members of New Swears decided to pick up local photographer, Ming Wu, and crowd surfed him (I may have helped). If that was not enough, as they launched into a new song, ”Blood,” the lead singer stabbed plush kittens and spread the bloody felines all over the bass player and the drummer before taking a bite. With the blood all around her mouth the band launched into the gloomy ”Vicinage.” Great songs and a great performance by one of Ottawa’s finest." (June 2013) -

"Ottawa Showbox’s Favourite Canadian Albums of 2013"


(December 2013) -

"Yamantaka//Sonic Titan, The Yips and Blue Angel at Babylon – Ottawa Live Review"

"...Up next on the bill was Ottawa’s own self-described “Ouija-rockers,” The Yips. A five-piece, consisting of two guitarists, a bassist, drummer and vocalist, picked up where Blue Angel left off and notched up the dynamism for a nearly full floor.

Letting out a set containing several tracks from their self-released debut EP, the band seemed to hold nothing back in their performance, each member bouncing off another as they moved around the stage to the beat of their heavy rhythm. Seeming not to pay much mind to the allotted stage space, The Yips stirred about in an amorphous mass while generating and propagating their own dark sonic brew and letting it wash over an ostensibly eager crowd. Blending dusky overtones with powerful vocal melodies and delivery, The Yips put on a tight performance in their style and were well suited for the night." (November 2013) - The Scene Magazine


"by Mark Gillis

Artist: The Yips
Album: YIPS EP
Location: Ottawa, ON

The debut EP from Ottawa band The Yips takes on their described genre of “ouija rock”. When I saw that I immediately wondered what kind of gimmick I was getting into with these six tracks. Much to my delight I found no gimmicks, no tricks, just flat out rock music that’s packed full of gumption and comes comes straight from the gut. I hear two distinct types of songs on this EP. Ones that are swanky, upbeat and walk around like a deservedly cocky motherfucker such as “Sans Nom”. The other type of song on here is meant to curdle your blood while making you feel completely uncomfortable in your surroundings a la “Blood Meridian”. The parallels between these two types of songs are awesomely noisy and memorable guitars along with vocals that seem to channel Karen O at her most powerful and emotive. This a fantastic EP, defintely one of my favourites of the year." (October 2013) - Speakers and Screens

"The Yips - The Yips (Bruised Tongue)"

"Allow me to preface this review by saying that Ottawa is currently on fire. Our sleepy old capital city seems to be blowing up, an epicentre of great, GREAT garage bands and DIY venues rising up with a new generation of kids taking advantage of large basements and the lack of better things to do.

The Yips are among the new crop of fantastic bands popping up, many of these bands seem to be finding a good home on the Bruised Tongue tape label, a fantastically curated cassette only imprint that is pooting forth great releases by the likes of New Swears (review coming soon!), Roberta Bondar and Grime Kings.. couple that with the awesome new Ottawa Xplosion festival and you’ve got all the makings of a super positive scene!

The Yips’ soon to be released EP kicks off with a spooky number called “Blood Meridian”, either a nod to the Cormac Mccarthy novel or the so named Vancouver band. I’m betting the former, as the dark tones really reflect the mood of that incredible book. The song emerges slowly out of a murky soundscape and by the time vocalist Kerri Carisse begins singing you are hooked utterly. Her bassy phrasing is perfect for the languid but ripped and distorted gothy punk, soaring occasionally to some really masterful runs. She’s a very engaging and dramatic singer, bringing to mind Peter Murphy while the music combines some Bauhaus or Sisters of Mercy era goth with elements of surf and garage, a fantastically winning combination that happens to also be very au courant. The pace ramps up with the rocker “Clay” which builds to several toasty peaks and segues neatly into the druggier jam “PGLM”, hard to draw from contemporaries for comparison, but Cali’s The Growlers or Atlanta’s Buffalo Bangers might share a bit in this familiar but still quite unique sound. By the time “Sans Nom” drops it’s so very clear that this band is chock a block with great musicians, all of them at one point or another busily involved with some of the more compelling surf/garage/punk bands emerging from Ottawa in the last couple years.

Even the hardest cynic should be won over by the time “Suss it Out” drops, a fist-pumper if I ever heard one, and anthemically hooky. They save the fastest and surfiest jam for last, the ripped riffs of “Vicinage” just brings everything on home. The Yips’ first EP is already a triumph, managing to infuse older sounds with new attitude and succeeding fiercely while achieving the rare feat of being a party band with depth and complexity." (February 2013) - The Big Takeover (by Matt Lee)

"The Yips "Point Dume" (video) review"

Ottawa outfit the Yips released their Air Loom EP earlier this year via hometown label Bruised Tongue, they've released a video for the song "Point Dume."

The Yips describe themselves as a band that plays "Ouija rock," and while that may be hard to understand at first, it sort of makes sense — here, their garage attack is countered with a spooky, vague creepiness that adds some welcome post-punk elements to the sound.

For the excellent "Point Dume," the group have put together an excellent clip. Directed by Travis Boisvenue, the clip follows a young girl as she examines what looks like a trap made of string in the forest. There are also open flames, and plenty of quick edits. It's abstract, but also feels like it possesses a strange narrative.

Point Dume video link: - Exclaim! (by Josiah Hughes)

"Arboretum Festival 2014 Line-Up Review: The Yips, Arts Court, Ottawa ON, August 22"

It might take a bit of guesswork to determine what the Yips mean when identifying themselves as a "Ouija rock" act, but their gritty, driving sonics were able to shake the spirits of those in attendance right to the core. Vocalist Keri Carisse's soulful vocal tone walked a thin line between smooth and spirited, soaring above the fuzzy twin guitar riffing from Zach Lebert and Jon Schofield. A rhythm section anchored by bassist Kurt Rafuse and drummer Jon Bennett showed incredible poise and stamina, roaring white-knuckled through the group's fast-paced material with impressive control.

Perhaps "Ouija rock" is exactly what it sounds like — a brand of the genre to be used as a spiritual guide in uncovering and exploring the rest of Ottawa's sudden garage rock uprising. For those looking to delve a bit deeper into such a movement, the Yips serve as a worthy place to start. - Exclaim! (by Josiah Hughes)


“Point Dume” is a favourite of mine and this video takes the song to a new level for me. The video, like the song, is as creepy as you want it to be. It can just be a woman on a stroll through the forest who encountered some art display left behind. Or it could be a trap – the scene of a past Wicca gathering, a woman lost in the isolation of her own mind and darkness broadcasted in this form, a trailer for an artsy horror film, or any number of scenarios can creep into your imagination. -




"Pop Montreal Artists: The Yips"

"Opening their album Air Loom with a sinister tremolo guitar line, The Yips announce to the listener that they’re in for a chaotic ride. The Ottawa band is stacked with incredible players, capable of creating a layered sound that sucks in and disorients the listener." - POP Montreal

"Top 14 Albums + Top 5 Songs [Best of 2014]"

YIPS 'AIR LOOM' EP BE ON THE LIST. - (by Matthew Stella)


"It was Halloween in the summer, with rave ghosts out in full force getting some sun. I only got there near the end of their set, which was a bummer because they are still one of my favourite bands all around in town. Their crunchy and unforgiving sound is aggressive to a point, and then pulls back at key points. Zach and Jonny’s guitars thrive off of each other, unfurling a mysterious and piercing equilibrium that many bands can only dream of. Kurt’s ferocious bass works in the same way as Jon Bennett’s drumming – potent, unrelentless, and absorbing. Let’s all have a séance!" -

"Steamwhistle Brewery promo video from show" - Steamwhistle

"The YIPS: House of TARG, Ottawa ON, February 3"

As the Yips continue to lay claim to being one of Ottawa's better live acts, no one has come forward with a solid explanation as to what their self-described "Ouija rock" actually means. Perhaps it shouldn't matter at this point, as the five-piece let their driving, distorted sounds do the talking to a packed crowd at House of TARG. It didn't take much longer than two songs into the set for the small basement venue to reach close to sauna temperatures, brought on by the heavy garage rock riffing taking place on stage.

Vocalist Kerri Carisse led the charge with her powerful vocals, shifting her impressive range around in effortless fashion on cuts such as "Repeater" and "Sadie" from 2014's AIR LOOM. Further bolstered by an incredibly tight rhythm section of Jon Bennett's frenetic drums and Kurt Rafuse's steady bass lines, in addition to the twin guitar attack of Zach Lebert and Jon Schofield, the performance reassured those in attendance that the group is a force be reckoned wit, however you want to classify them. - Exclaim!


Ottawa’s ghostly Ouija rockers The Yips and grungey psych-pop band Organ Eyes have teamed up for a banger of a four-track split on Bruised Tongue.

The first two tracks belong to The Yips. They kick off the album with a long time favourite of mine, “Let Go.” The very dancey track has me constantly thinking of Heath Ledger’s Joker as the chorus repeats “why so serious, so serious?” It has given me thrills every time I listened to it live and it is great to finally get a recorded version. Now I can get chills as I walk to work or cook supper. The second track “Obsession” really puts singer Kerri Carisse‘s vocals on display as the song gradually grows in intensity. The Yips keep impressing as they evolve musically and as a band, but still manage to stay true to that eerie vibe that attracted so many in the nation’s capital to them.

The second half of the split tape is when we hear Organ Eyes‘ contributions. “Expectations” takes a lot of the ethereal, spacey sound we love and applies it to this more upbeat, skippy beat. Organ Eyes aren’t typically a band whose music you’d be able to dance to, but this song is an exception. The back and forth vocals between Sam Pippa and Cam Steacy make for a good balance and discourse in the song. Organ Eyes are one of those bands that makes you wonder how a band from one of the coldest capitals in the world can make listeners feel like they’re lying on a beach. The song “Turtle Speed” is anything but, as it starts off with a feel-good lo-fi guitar riff and then bursts into Cam’s rapid vocals. The song gets increasingly frenetic but never loses its catchy pop underpinnings, even as Steacy’s guitar lets loose as the bass and percussion fill out the rest.

Check out these two great local bands as they take their act on the road to the East Coast of Canada. Thursday, April 16 in Moncton, New Brunswick, Friday, April 17 in Fredericton, New Brunswick and Saturday, April 18 in Halifax, Nova Scotia - Ottawa Showbox








Since forming in 2012, The Yips have become a staple within Ottawa's formidable garage/punk scene. Drawing stylistic comparisons to artists as diverse as Karen O and Jesus and the Mary Chain, their self described "ouija rock" is unmistakably a product of their own sonic creation. Having received as much praise for their visceral live act as they have their recorded catalogue, The Yips' reputation as one of the city's “bands of note” is well deserved. 

The past year has been one of maturation for the Yips. February, 2014 saw the release of their second EP via local label Bruised Tongue Records. The hauntingly titled Air Loom reflects stylistic development from their eponymous 2013 debut, but certainly not a departure. The Yips may have settled on the driving, sometimes psychedelic style evidenced in snippets on their first EP, but not at the expense of the brooding grooves and atmospheric melodies that first brought them regional attention. Appearances at the 2014 instalments of NXNE, Ottawa Explosion, Arboretum Music Festival and Pop Montreal have helped to broaden their audience in tandem with regular summer rotation on CBC Radio 3 and an Exclaim! video premiere for the single “Point Dume”.

The Yips seem poised for a breakout year in 2015, with an Eastern Canada tour already under their belt in the spring, and scheduled festival appearances at Canadian Music Week and NXNE this summer. 

Yips are also in the midst of writing/recording their first full length LP, slated for release on Bruised Tongue Records in fall 2015. Stay tuned now! 


Band Members