Raleigh exists as key elements in the current fabric of Calgary’s music community.
I was first introduced to the musical stylings of Raleigh in spring 2010, at the time they were known as simply Clea Anaïs & Brock Geiger. The duo were looking to collaborate with a drummer and eventually found the skilled Matt Doherty.
Since 2010 Raleigh have individually racked up a long resume of touring as well as working on a variety of projects. Anaïs, Geiger and Doherty each play with Dojo Workhorse, while Geiger and Doherty also play for the Dudes, as well. Geiger also has his solo work and Doherty also plays drums for the HighKicks, as well as dabbling in various jazz projects. Together, as Raleigh, they form a quirky, experimental folk collaboration (some have even called them a folk “super group”).
In 2011, they released their debut album, New Times in Black and White, with significant buzz and high praise from media. This fall, they will be releasing their follow-up, Sun Grenades and Grenadine Skies, almost a year after recording.
“We recorded at hotel2tango with Howard Bilerman and Greg Smith in October 2012,” says Anaïs. “It was an awesome experience. We were able to remain authentic to our live sound but also embellish the songs with guest players and interesting orchestrated parts. We have been working towards a carefully planned release because we want to make sure the album has support to make it as successful as possible.”
The music video for their first single off Sun Grenades, “Carebear,” produced by Ramin Eshraghi Yazdi, features an eccentric group of party-goers attending a flash mob-esque event in a washroom, complete with odd costumes, balloons and lots of escalators. It is has an off-kilter feel to it, similar to their perfected, complex, pretty, yet quirky sound.
“This new album has a grand quality to it with expansive sounds and warmer colours and that is represented in the title while leaving a lot up to the listener’s imagination.” Anaïs paints a vivid picture of what we can expect.
Those in tune with Canadian folk music have been expectantly awaiting new music from the trio as they have evolved over the past years.
“Our sound since the release of New Times in Black and White has definitely become more cohesive,” says Geiger. “We sound more like a band, as opposed to a brand new project. I really enjoy the process of experimenting lots with songs as they are being written, trying new tricks out live and seeing how that fits the song and translates to an audience. Nothing felt rushed and it was nice to take the time to work out supplemental parts for the recording. We’ve come along way since New Times, settling into working as a three-piece and figuring out new directions to push our ideas.”
Doherty looks forward to returning to Calgary triumphant with a show on May 23 at the Ironwood: “Nothing brings a group of people closer then sharing an experience across the continent, playing for new people every night. I have a feeling that coming home we are gonna be the best trio we have ever been.”
By Andrea LlewellynAB, Alberta