|Kenn Coutu, Adam Sutherland, Ryan Rae
Katrina: What have you learned while touring?
Kenn: We learned that when you go to each town, things that you joke about within the vehicle you’re driving around in are not the same
things you see as banter on the stage. You don’t make fun of the fields that you’re driving through in Saskatchewan. But what you do
when you enter a town is find something beautiful about it like the women in Saskatoon, or a wonderful statue I saw down by the river.
That was beautiful.
Adam: Trees, there’s trees.
Kenn: But don’t make fun of the people you’re playing for
Katrina: How did you come up with the name for your band?
Adam: Kenn was the original founder of the band.
Kenn: It’s all based simply. There’s a term called ‘armchair quarterback’ that’s used in reference of guys who sit around home and they
judge football games. It’s very difficult to play a game of football but very easy to sit back on a lazy-boy and judge it so it’s Armchair
Cynics. A cynical person thinks that everyone is looking out for themselves so it’s a combination of those two words. We ourselves are
very positive guys and we have hope in us but because of the oxymoron maybe perhaps, that’s what the term comes from. It’s inspired
by my father.
Katrina: Who were your musical influences growing up?
Adam: I think we’re all over the map.
Kenn: Who are yours Adam?
Adam: Generally I kind of grew up with the grunge scene and then Tool and then I sort of got into more like some British stuff like
Radiohead, and Coldplay and stuff like that.
Kenn: What about you Ryan?
Ryan: I wouldn’t say that at all actually. I would listen to Pantera one minute and then I’d listen to Jewel the next. And Sarah McLachlan
the next and all the way back to Led Zepplin. She has a amazing voice, very seductive. I enjoy it.
Adam: Ford at the moment couldn’t be here.
Kenn: Ended up breaking the law. He likes Judas Priest, and Judas Priest.
Adam: We won’t talk about him anymore. And he really loves Coldplay. He despises Coldplay.
Kenn: He calls his ear plugs anti-Coldplay devices. We listen to it in the van. It’s so beautiful to listen to the 1st Coldplay album when you
go through Saskatchewan and Manitoba because it’s so calm and big skies. Beautiful things, and that guy hates it.
Katrina: What’s your most embarrassing moment?
Ryan: I was actually caught naked in a canoe running illegal herbs and spices across the border of Uganda when I was 12 years old. I
was really embarrassed, they put me on international television and I can’t believe I did that. I managed to get away from it with some
smooth talking and quick licks from the tongue. Not sexual.
Kenn: Most embarrassing moment. For me is we had another bass player that played with us but he had to leave the band and he was
one of the original guys and he’d always kick when he was playing and one time I was rocking out and he decided at that moment to do a
kick. And he kicks me in the back of the head and I was playing. Very embarrassing because it’s very hard to look cool when you’re
kicked in the head.
Katrina: What’s your most memorable moment?
Adam: Our cd release show the other week, it was awesome playing in our home town again over 500 people out.
Kenn: That’s cool.
Adam: It was pretty sweet.
Kenn: You know what I’d like to say though? About a year and half or two years before the cd came out, I watched Nickelback and I
watched Matthew Good come to Victoria and play. No affiliation to either of them. Victoria doesn’t get a lot of bands playing so we’ll go
watch whatever we can. So we watched Nickelback whatever, we watched Matthew Good play whatever. Within about a year later we
have two sides of the camps working with us. Which is Dave Gandy who plays guitar with them and he was recording with them and we
have Chad Kroeger from Nickelback and I think that’s really memorable because they’re Canadian icons and then now we have the
recognition of those people in the industry. That I mean, Chad especially being world re-known they recognize the talent they believe we
have and we like to believe we have and to me that’s one of the most coolest things.
Ryan: You know what I think is really memorable. Not to sound cheesy now is memorable, is driving across to see Canada. I’ve always
lived on the coast.
Adam: Me too.
Ryan: I mean don’t get me wrong it’s beautiful out there but I’ve never had the chance to drive across Canada. So I get to go home and tell
my friends I saw the prairies which is fantastic. That’s memorable.
Katrina: What’s your favorite song to perform?
Adam: It kind of changes night to night, I mean sometimes it’s fun playing the single “Bang” because it’s got really good audience energy
and everything. The new songs are always fun.
Ryan: I get a kick out of the new songs. I mean love the old songs s and people seem to be receiving them really well but the new songs,
we haven't played 500 times. It’s new, there’s that fresh energy there. It’s also we progressed as musicians. So we think it gets better,
whatever anyone else thinks we don’t know but we think it gets better. I think it’s playing the new stuff.
Kenn: Getting a great reaction from the old stuff.
Katrina: What advice can you give to people who are wanting to create a band?
Kenn: I’m going to have to say really really work hard. I mean this is obvious and everybody knows this but you got to work really hard
and believe in what you do and just do what feels right.
Adam: I think you want to stay away from Newfies and red-heads, generally.
Kenn: Adam’s kidding.
Ryan: Newfies and red-heads are fantastic. I’m a red-headed Newfie and I’m happy to be one. But yeah just work hard and write good
Adam: It’s all about writing good songs.
Ryan: So yeah advice for new bands, what you feel you want to write. Try to do something new.
Adam: That’s the ongoing question, what is new? Because it’s hard to do something that hasn’t been done before because music works
in spirals and keeps bringing back old stuff. I don’t know where to go.
Kenn: Bottom line I think is perseverance and believing in yourself. Because if you don’t believe in yourself nobody else will. If you’re on
stage playing and you don’t believe what you’re doing is right and doesn’t feel good then it’s going to come off that way and the audience
is going to notice it. Believe in yourself.
Katrina: Who causes the most trouble in the group?
Ryan: That’s definitely me.
Adam: Definitely Ryan.
Ryan: We won’t get into detail. I’m more trouble than I cause.
Adam: We noticed in Manitoba you can buy fireworks year round so of course Ryan loaded up, stocked up pretty good. We’ll see over the
course of the tour what kind of stuff gets blown up and make sure we have all our fingers at the end of the tour and shit.
Katrina: What do you think about how Canadian music is being shown around the world right now?
Adam: I don’t know, how is it being shown around the world right now? Actually it’s really competitive because radio stations play a
certain amount of Canadian content and being a new band and trying to get on the radio is really hard because your competing against
bands that are established. Like our single came out the same time as The Trews, Our Lady Peace, Default, Hot Hot Heat, Nickelback
came out with a single right after that so we were looking at six or seven Canadian bands that were established and just no brainers for
radio stations to add. And you got to compete against that and the thing that’s going to make that happen is just having a good song that
stands out. And a radio station is going to say hey we want to add this because this is a good song, and then if you start getting requests
and stuff then it starts showing people are actually liking it and stuff.
Ryan: As far as Canadian music outside Canadian borders I think any band that’s able to cross a border and go into the U.S. or overseas
, I really don’t have a grasp on how well it’s being pushed and marketed and how well bands are doing but for the bands that have done
that and are doing that, kudos to them. It’s great because they’re doing a great job if you’re getting to that state where you can do that. It’s
excellent. I don’t know if it’s in a good state or a bad state or an in between state or up or down or sideways but for the people that are
able to do it that’s great. We hope to do it.
Katrina: What’s your favorite venue to play? (Outdoor, Club ...)
Ryan: I really like the ones where we’re received best.
Adam: Local shows are fun. People know us there. We’d like to get that same kind of vibe out of other cities, it’s just a matter of building
up the following for it.
Kenn: It doesn;t matter if it’s 10 people or 5000 people wherever people are receiving us the best. It’s got a good sound when people are
there to watch us.
Adam: It was cool the other night actually in Winnipeg because it was 200 people that didn’t know whe the hell we were and a couple
people just singing along to every lyric. That’s kind of worth while to drive out to the middle of Canada and play for people that don’t
really care about who you are so you just got to put on a really good show and impress those people.
Katrina: What’s the nicest or craziest thing a fan has done for you?
Ryan: An excellent story is, we were playing at a place in Victoria and brought a tear to my eye. A young guy that’s probably 15 and he
waited outside this bar with a poster he made of the band because he heard on the radio we were playing. And he waited outside with his
mother and got his mother to go in because he was too young to go in the bar and find every member of the band and bring them outside
to sign this poster that he got on his computer and made with a picture of us and put our names across it and stuff like that. And that was
cool just to know that we touched someone’s life that it was great.
Katrina: Anything else you want to add?
Ryan: Our cd “Killing The Romance” just came out August 23rd and that’s in stores now across Canada so if anybody’s interested in
picking it up. It’s a fantastic EP with seven songs that we’d like to get in everybody’s hands so they can check out the band. We’ll be
touring Canada through September in Ontario and B.C. and we’d just gone through Manitoba and Saskatchewan. So check out our web
site at www.armchaircynics.com for cool dates.