The Toronto trio is composed of Peroff's electronically wired back beats, the keyboard play of Liam O'Neil and singer-guitarist Dave Hamelin, both of whom were members in defunct Montreal group the Stills. After a year of planning and relocating, the new band has become a Canadian surprise, and anticipation is building for this budding collective of indie-rock veterans. "It feels like we are hitting the refresh button," Peroff recently told Spinner RPM.
Eight and a Half's first single, 'Scissors,' has all the pain and heartache of a scorned band member, lover or friend. Its universal appeal isn't just in the chorus lyrics ("Hold me like an old friend/Hold me like an omen"), it's in the stark swishes of digital drums and raincloud synths that grab hold of your mind's darkest regions.
The track's accompanying video is a perfect illustration of these themes. Impish figures haunt an ancient forest with ironic mustaches, hot pastel hoodies and spontaneous make-out sessions. And just as the final chorus kicks in, you realize that not all is well in the old wood, as lovers and friends attempt to destroy each other through violent fits of attempted murder.
"We're honored to have been able to work with French video artist Gaëlle Jaunay on our (and her) début video for 'Scissors' featuring a group of French actors, directors and singers, shot in the Parc d'Aubervilliers," O'Neill tells Spinner.
Eight and a Half's self-titled debut will hit record stores Feb. 7 via Arts and Crafts.