Indigo Joseph rocks the Gateway
Four-piece Regina-based Indigo Joseph has the spirit with them. Opening for Vancouver-based Rococode on Oct. 4 at the Gateway, these indie rockers thrive on sharing a good time with the audience.
Their latest work is a ticklish affair called Lilith, an album featuring the gruffness of 60s garage rock, Rolling Stones’ licks and everything in between.
The Weal interviewed lead singer Eric Tessier to find out what the band has in store for SAIT.
The Weal: How long have you been a band?
Tessier: Indigo Joseph has been a band for about two years now. I personally joined the band as the drummer about nine months ago. They lost their original drummer to a Chemistry program at U of T, so he moved out there fairly permanently. We met at a party once and talked about jamming and ended up jamming and it, just, was a really good fit. So long story to a short answer: two years.
The Weal: You pull a lot of stylistic ideas from other genres besides rock into your music, but what would you play if somebody told you to do a Saskatchewan-style song?
Tessier: I grew up listening to my uncles and they played in a kind of a blues band, and they played just a lot of covers— stuff like Eric Clapton. That, I very much identify as, because growing up that was first sort of music I heard—that’s the kind of band that plays in Saskatchewan.
The Weal: Since you have such a wide variety of influences, what are some that people might not guess just from listening to your music?
Tessier: One interesting thing is that one of our guitar players, Sean McCannell, is very heavily influenced by metal riffs so a lot of what he’s playing comes stylistically from that palm-muted kind of metal.
The other thing is that we’ve released music only in English up to this point although both of our songwriters speak French as a first language, so that’s something upcoming for Indigo.
The Weal: It said in your online bio that the live environment comes naturally to you. Why do you think that is?
Tessier: We very much have fun playing music together and when it’s fun, it’s easy. Before I joined the band it seemed to come naturally too, I remember walking into one of the venues in Regina one evening and seeing these guys playing and as a musician in the city, it really knocked my socks off, like, “Holy, this is what’s coming up, eh? Holy crap.”
It wasn’t polished, it was very raw. Byrun was playing guitar on the song that I walked in on and he was doing this heavy syncopated strumming pattern and he was practically levitating jumping up and down playing it.
Maybe it’s going to come down to how we start recording music in the future, but I think our live music is our bread-and-butter and if we can get someone who’s a music lover to come out, I think they can connect with that.
The Weal: You have this track, “Indigo”, with the chorus “We’re the Indigo Band”, with the same phrasing as the Sgt. Pepper’s line – is that your anthem?
Tessier: You know what, again, before I joined the band I totally thought it was the anthem. It’s a song that, at shows, people would be singing along and it was this crazy thing, but then I joined the band and the guys were, like, “Yeah we’re kind of tired of that song, I don’t really want to play it anymore, it’s like two chords we can do better.” And I was like, “Guys I just joined the band! I’m all excited to play this song called Indigo because I’m in the Indigo Joseph band!”
So that’s been an on-running joke because we haven’t played it a lot. Personally I think it is an anthem, pretty clever way to get people to remember your name is to put it in the song and repeat it.
It’s been the encore, recently.
The Weal: What’s the highlight of a typical Indigo Joseph show?
Tessier: Personally, for me, we play this one song called “Others.” It’s a little bit more down tempo but it’s got a really wicked build to it. If you think like a Weezer drum-build—very mathematical, little components added gradually. We get a very good response. There are a lot of different moments. We’re getting better at reading the crowd and seeing, based on their energy level, what they’d be into.
Indigo Joseph opens for Rococode at the Gateway on Oct. 4. The show begins at 8 p.m. Tickets $12, visit www.ticketmaster.ca for more information.