By Christine Leonard
CALGARY – A blast of pure elemental energy out of Squamish, B.C., Hoopsnake is primed to sweep across the prairies like a heatwave of primordial fury this summer. It’s been almost a decade since the threesome pooled their collective talents (along with their beer and weed budgets) in the name of metallic mayhem. But the skate-or-die ethos that brought them together in 2009, has continued to generate ripples that have been felt across the country.
“Back then Dave [Hardy, guitarist] and Shane [Carmichael, bassist] we’re playing in a different doom band called COBRA,” recalls drummer Oli Gagnon.
“At that time, I was playing in a punk band called The Death Rays and I was sorta over it. At one point, the two bands played a gig at the Squamish skate park; that’s where we met and decided to try jamming together as a three-piece. Being all into the same style of music, it clicked right away and we knew it would work out.”
After coming up dry in the search for a vocalist hardcore enough to front their radical new endeavour, Carmichael and Hardy opted to split the difference and share the mic. As a result, Hoopsnake has access to a twinned-array of “heinous deep grunts and high-pitched screeches” to get the job done. This resourcefulness has served the trio well as evidenced by their body of work including their 2012 self-titled/self-released debut (also known as Knucklehead), as well as 2014’s Curse of the White Widow.
“Releasing your own records and booking full DIY tour packages for ourselves and international touring acts is not a small feat and it keeps us beyond busy,” Gagnon confirms.
“I feel like we have never rested, since …the White Widow album came out, we have released a music video and a split tape with IRN from Toronto, we have toured Canada three more times, toured Japan, played at Heavy Days In Doomtown festival in Copenhagen, Denmark, done… fly out shows to California, and played countless local shows.”
Yet somehow the sidewinding three-piece has managed to eke out enough time to record an album of fresh tales inspired by “Weedcraftian” adventures and abominable hedonism. The July 2018 arrival of the band’s latest LP, Snowmammoth, further cements Hoopsnake’s claim to stoner rock fame.
And, the vein of gold they’re mining is proving to be as rich as it is deep.
“We have also written a brand new full-length album that we recorded with Jesse Gander at Rain City Records. I guess we don’t take writing new material lightly, it took around three years to get the entire record written and practiced well enough to take on the road touring.”
But, when they’re not touring Hoopsnake knows exactly where to park their bicycles…. And it’s right outside the nearest karaoke bar.
Hoopsnake performs with GUEVNNA and HAAZE on September 8 at the Palomino (Calgary) and on September 9 at Bohemia (Edmonton)Bohemia, Guevnna, Haaze, Hoopsnake, Palomino, Palomino Smokehouse & Social Club