The Skeletones Four
“…a vague classic rock-inspired psychedelia infiltrates both their soul-inspired pop ballads and their full-on guitar freak-outs, making the Skeletones Four the most fascinating young band in southern Ontario.” - Exclaim! Magazine
When the Skeletones Four play a show, somebody in the audience proclaims them to be their new favourite rock ‘n’ roll band. Over the last two years, this scenario has played itself out time and again, from the proggy post-punk outift’s home base in Toronto, ON to music festivals like Hillside in their native Guelph, ON and Sappyfest in Sackville, NB. They’ve also caught unsuspecting audiences by surprise, stealing a bit of thunder opening for Julie Doiron and By Divine Right, and Toronto’s Zeus tapped them to support a southern Ontario tour in late 2010. Throughout it all, people wondered how to get their hands on a new record and, after all that clamouring, fans can finally feast their senses upon the Skeletones Four’s proper, full-band debut, Gravestone Rock, which Label Fantastic! is releasing on Tuesday August 23, 2011.
Led by Andrew Collins (vocals/guitar/keyboards/horns), the Skeletones Four are rooted in classic pop sensibilities, which turn out sounding rather weird in translation; at the end of some through line between the Beach Boys, Booker T. and the MGs, the Gories, and Giorgio Moroder, you’ll find the S4, quietly tuning up. When Collins brings his song ideas to band mates Evan Gordon (bass/vocals), Jordan Howard (guitar/vocals), and John Merritt (drums), things get fuzzy and explosive, with unusual time signatures, ping ponging guitars, and ghostly vocal harmonies bubbling together to form their idiosyncratic, startlingly super-charged sound.
The results of this unique chemical reaction are all over Gravestone Rock, the follow-up to AAAAAHHH!!!, a 2009 collection spanning a decade’s worth of Collins’ songs, in which he played and recorded every instrument himself. He’s a very talented man but he values the camaraderie of his band of brothers, all lifelong friends who were raised in Guelph. Collins gathered them together, mostly at his grandparents’ farm in the picturesque country side within Caledon, ON, and then he set up some mics and pushed some buttons to capture the Skeletones Four’s latest songs for Gravestone Rock. Mastered by Harris Newman and available on 180 gram vinyl, the record’s a beaut—a raw but pristine document of a challenging pop band, making timeless rock songs with unassuming confidence.
In conjunction with the release of Gravestone Rock, the Skeletones Four have videos and tour dates in the offing (including stops at Pop Montreal and the Halifax Pop Explosion this fall) and buzz about them is building. And once people bring Gravestone Rock home with them, they’ll be signed on to the Skeletones Four for life.