SHOUT OUT OUT OUT OUT: Legends never die

Wednesday 31st, May 2017 / 18:25

By Glen Erickson

EDMONTON – Besides owning arguably one of the best band names Edmonton has ever produced, Shout Out Out Out Out (SO4) potentially has the title for one of the city’s most successful acts of this young century.

Edmonton isn’t often flashy, so the emergence of a six-piece band doing electronic music was somewhat explosive when they formed back in 2004. A live show featuring two drummers and a wall of vintage synths only increased the buzz. Following their first release, Not Saying/Just Saying in 2006, SO4 received a JUNO nomination, catching the attention of the global music community.

Fast forward to 2017: visit the official website for SO4 and you will be greeted with tour updates from 2014, which begs the question: what has the band been up to for the past three years? BeatRoute sat down with founding member of the band, Nik Kozub to discuss that and the band’s back-to-back gigs at 9910 this weekend.

“The band has always existed. We’ve played shows now and then.  Every time we get together to rehearse a new show, we all have a great time, we all talk about writing again, then it always ends up like ‘see you next year.’”

What led to the band slowing down? Lack of aspired success? Getting older? Multiple extra-curricular projects? Kozub finds truth in each suggestion.

“We really needed the last record, by far the record I am most proud of, to carry us to the next level, to be a slam dunk. Despite better press the sales went down. We were worn out by slogging it out on the road for a long time with no money. It’s an expensive band to tour. We have been able to go to some great places, play some great shows and have tremendous experiences but still, I think we were ready to take a little break.”

Sometimes a band succumbs to the problem of aspirations.

“I admittedly built it up in my own head that since the last record people stopped caring about our band and there wasn’t a point in pushing hard,” Kozub continues. “But whenever we do something, people seem to really care. We play a show at The Needle and it sells out.”

It’s refreshing to hear an icon of the local music scene speak soberly about the easily tarnished perception of success.

“The first song on the last album is called “Now That I’ve Given Up Hope, I Feel Much Better” –  that sounds kind of dire but its a little bit true. Not having the pressure of trying to make it has made all of us happier and I think we still want to do the band, but on our own terms. I’m not really willing to close the door, and I don’t think anyone is.  It’s entirely possible there will be another album, but we’re in no rush to do that. I’d rather write and release when it feels right, and if people like it, then great.”

Shout Out Out Out Out brings their electronic flash and sage experience to 9910 in Edmonton for a 13th Anniversary series of shows – June 2 and 3 – featuring opening act Melted Mirror from Calgary.