Quaker Parents, consisting of the brothers Grundy (Mark and Scott), is the musical culmination of every fleeting feeling you’ve had ever, reflected when their twangy melodies and addictive hooks dissipate as soon as they’re realized. All of this results in a Quaker-fix that can only be satisfied after about a dozen listenings. In the spirit of their upcoming Sled Island appearance, vocalist Mark Grundy let me in on what it’s like way yonder, on the east coast.
Grundy explains that though tiny in size, Halifax makes up for it by brimming with versatile musicians whose tendencies many times bleed together. “We’re really fortunate to have some pretty sweet bands, I guess the main thing is – and I’ve heard a lot of people say this before — there’s this feeling that, because it is a little bit more of a smaller town, we tend to influence each other,” says Grundy. “It has generated a lot of cross-pollination from other bands. I found, with my stuff anyway, that I took a lot of influence from bands I would see on the weekend, like local Halifax bands.”
He goes on, “I mean, even though now the Internet is a pretty dominating sphere where everyone sort of draws influence from, I still think that there’s still some sort of pretty strong tapestry effect or something at work here where we all feed off each other. Local bands were always and will always be a pretty big part of my music taste.”
But Grundy has not only one, but two whole bands making their way westward for the festival. Heaven For Real recently released Wanton, a cassette that dabbles in narratives with gaiety.
“It’s real different playing with Heaven For Real. It’s more of a collaborative songwriting experience, whereas, with Quaker, I’m the primary songwriter and we will arrange as a band. But. I don’t know, maybe we’ll be so similar that we’ll melt into each other — become Real Quaker Heaven For Parents,” he laughs.
Regarding where he draws source material? “It’s a pretty wide envelope to be honest. Usually its sort of more direct impressions I have from experiences in my immediate world, which I basically just convolute them into songs and dissect them into song.
I finally tell him that I’ve never been to Halifax: “You should visit, it’s good! There’s water, you can go near it.”
Catch Quaker Parents at Tubby Dog on June 22.
By Nivedita IyerAB, Alberta