1. Introduce us to your project!
Now then, we’re Toronto Blessings. We’re made up of Rik on Vocals and Bass, Dale on Guitar and Murray on Drums. A very, very loud noisy three piece.
2. How did you guys start out?
The three of us used to play in the Band Cavorts before this one. Our singer Matthew moved to Berlin to follow his heart and move in with his girlfriend. We were still practising and writing and kind of out of the blue Rik just picked up a mic and started singing along. It was a real moment and we all looked at each other like, “We could totally do this!”. So, Toronto Blessings was born. I got the name from a feature in a newspaper about Sleaford Mods where it said that the lead singer looked like he was receiving the Toronto Blessing. I thought, that’s a fucking cool name for a band, Rik and Murray agreed and it came to pass that it was to be.
3. Describe your band’s sound.
Angular, catchy, noisy. We are like the bastard children of Gary Numan, Pissed Jeans and Mogwai, conceived in the tempestuous heat of a coked up 3 way. It’s punk rock but not as straightforward, we’re trying to include lots of different influences but make it a cohesive package. We try and trim the fat, keep them lean and keen and mean.
4. What influences your craft?
Picking up my guitar and searching out something that sounds cool. It’s like a living puzzle, but with no real solution. Trying to write that perfect riff or perfect chord progression is like trying to pluck gold out of the ether. Like trying to do a Sudoku with no pen and no numbers. I also write when I’m really fucking angry too. I’m not sure what this says about me or my writing style but I’m never as productive or creative when I’m happy. I need a bit of anger or something to spark off the tasty ideas.
5. What makes your band different? Why should people listen to you?
We make a noise that we love first and foremost. So that comes through in our music. We don’t write or second guess to see if we fit a current trend or idea. We want to blast your head clean off while the rest of your body dances along.
6. When introducing people to your music, what song should I show them first? What is your quintessential track?
100 percent our new single ‘Give Nothing’ This song came out of nowhere one band practice. It pretty much wrote itself, to be honest. It also made us ditch a full set of songs that we had because it made us realise that was exactly the sound we wanted to make. It was the first time we used a Synth in the writing process and it worked so well. Off the back of it, we had our most creative peak so far and wrote another 6 or so songs in next to no time.
7. What has been the biggest struggle in your career so far?
This band is pretty new so no struggles there. We’ve all been in touring, recording bands all our adult lives. So, the real struggle through that has been to make a living and spend time with loved ones and friends along the way. It can really grind you down and eat you up if you let it. We make music now for the enjoyment and creativity it brings.
8. What has been the biggest highlight of your career so far?
This band is so fresh and new, so we are yet to reach the highs! So far, it’s finding our sound and getting it in every lug hole that will listen. In our previous bands, we have been lucky enough to play with some of the UK’s largest bands and on some pretty big stages. We’ve toured and toured in previous bands and met some of our best mates along the way.
9. How bright is the future of your project – what are the plan
Well, we’ve just released a brand-new single ‘Give Nothing’ that’s available on all digital formats and Bandcamp to download. It’s also got a crazy mind-melter of a video to go along with it which was created by our good friend Giannis @ GSK Videography. He really went to town on it. Someone described it as what a migraine looks like! Here’s the link: https://youtu.be/bGjMCHfVSoo
Also, we have another single coming out in a month or so, which is called Bad Decision, which we hope to shoot a video for this song too. It’s probably the most straight-up sounding song we have in our set. It’s to the point and the hooks should claw into your mind pretty well!
We’ve been working away on songs for an album or an extended EP. We’re beyond excited about these tunes, we’ve worked hard on them in one sense, but they also came to us pretty easy! We’ve hit on our sound now and are just going with it. We ditched an album worth of songs as they were too similar to our previous band. We want Toronto Blessings to be a totally different trip.
10. When all is said and done, how would you like to be remembered?
Like 3 dudes who stuck to their guns, did what they loved and did it well. Exceptional lovers and visionary entrepreneurs.