Frank Yang, Chromewaves It may not be the cultural mecca that is SXSW, but…
- Posted on May 11th 2011 4:00PM by Anne T Donahue
"I can't be specific about it, but I feel that in a lot of ways, trends start in Europe and end up here about a year later," lead singer Ben Shemie tells Spinner.
"And I think if we're talking North America, in general, I would say that Canada would be behind [America] as far as picking up bands. And in Europe, for example, our band will get more attention there and then it'll go to the States and then Canada."
So is Canada stuck in a musical rut?
"I think that Canada plays the same stuff over and over until someone else picks up on something, you know?" guitarist Joseph Yarmush posits. "There's just less people, so maybe it takes a little longer or something. It's probably just a size thing and a space thing, but that's just speculation."
"That's the other thing -- it's all speculation," asserts keyboardist and bassist Max Henry. "Like, I don't know if our trajectory has been long enough to have any kind of context."
That said, the art-rockers -- who are about to make their second trek across Europe later this month in support of 2010's haunting 'Zeroes QC' -- have been around long enough to get a sense of how their nationality factors into people's perceptions.
"I feel like [the concept of] Canadian music can be a little bit groan-worthy sometimes," says Henry, who notes the notion of the "self-loathing Canadian" is very real. "It shouldn't be, but it is a little bit. I don't know if there necessarily is 'Canadian' music that isn't kind of a put down. There's music and then there's 'poser indie' Canadian, so I don't feel a particular aesthetic affinity to other Canadian bands, and I don't know if they would to us."
"It's like saying 'world music' -- what does that actually mean?" gripes Yarmush. "'Canadian music' -- that shouldn't even be a term; it doesn't make sense."
So perhaps it's their rejection of the "Canadian" scene that sets Suuns apart from the pack, earning them such attention abroad. Either way, it doesn't sound like the guys are looking to devote much more time to sorting out why their countrymen have been slow to come around. Just as long as folks are finally flocking to their shows, Suuns are content.