Amps & Lamps, our first full length CD, is just a little more than a month away from release. The songs are recorded and mixed. The album artwork is done. The release party is booked. Just the final spit and polish left to do and it’s a done deal. It’s a wonderful time and we couldn’t be more excited.
We’re looking at a June 3rd release on all the online stores and we’ll have the physical CDs shortly thereafter, just in time for our string of summer shows! It sure took a long time to get here. If we’d have had it our way the album would have been done and released much sooner but as everyone knows the last two years have been very consistent in smashing everyone’s plans.
The songs on the CD were recorded at Hillside Audio in Ottawa in the span of just over a year, with the first studio sessions going back to January 2021. We went back in during April 2021 and were finally able to finish up in March of this year. Engineered, mixed, and produced by the most excellent human Cameron Dunn, the album is a victory lap for us. It’s a concrete, tangible sign that we made it through the last two years with something constructive to show for it. Something that will last. Something to be proud of. And boy are we ever!
The songs capture a lot of the frustrations we all experienced over the last 24 months, but yet still have an element of hope, almost like we were craning our necks looking for the light at the end of the tunnel the whole time. We think you can feel it in the music. We hope you’ll agree!
We can’t wait to play these songs live for you. We’ll be back on stage in June, starting on the 18th in Kingston at one of our favourite spots on the planet, Overtime Sports Bar. The following week on June 25th we’re having the release party at Cafe Dekcuf in downtown Ottawa. We’ll be joined by our friends in Hot Jupiter, Trenchfoot, and Black Water Brigade.
We’ll also be playing at the White Water Rocks ‘Summerdaze’festival in Westmeath, Ontario in August and it’s a sure bet we’ll be adding more shows so stay tuned!
As many of you know, last week the Wyntr Facebook page was hacked and we lost all access to it. Even more disturbing is that it happened to a few Ottawa-based bands within a very short period on the same evening. It really felt…targeted. Needless to say we began navigating the process of trying to get it back but, sadly, we were unsuccessful. We do want to send a MASSIVE shoutout to our brothers in Rockin’ Engine (who themselves were one of these scammers’ victims that night) for going out of their way to try and find ways to help us out. We were thrilled when we learned they had regained control of their page with no damage done. They are amazing humans and you should all pause your reading here and go show them some love. It’s OK, we’ll refill our coffees in the meantime…
[…coffee machine gurgling noises over a background of the theme from Jeopardy…]
Cool, thanks for doing that, those guys deserve all the love. So, as we were saying, we ended up having to start over and make a brand new page. We paid WAY more attention to the security aspects this time. Of course it’s 2022 and you might be thinking we should have known better, and you’d be right. But in our defense the idea that a small-ish local rock band’s Facebook page would be considered an enticing target to steal never even crossed our minds. Lesson learned.
We’ll be adding back some of the old content to the page as we dig it up on our hard drives, along with our usual shenanigans just like we used to so be sure to go give it a like and follow!
PRO TIP: if it doesn’t say Wyntr – Hard Rock from Ottawa it isn’t us! If you see anything from a page that looks like ours but doesn’t have the ‘Hard Rock from Ottawa’ in the name, it’s the old page and you should take the opportunity to unlike it and unfollow it as it’s being run by scammers.
Now, in some more music-related news, in just a couple of weeks we’ll be back at Hillside Audio recording the last bits of our first full-length album. The new songs are off the scale good if we do say so ourselves – including another surprise cover. The plan is to release the album sometime during the summer and with a little luck get some shows in to support it. We all understand that’s not a guarantee but we’re staying positive…we’ll see how it goes.
Whatever ends up happening you know we’re going to want to tell you about it and this monthly blog is a great way to stay up to date on a lot of what we’re up to behind the scenes. We hope you come back and visit often so as not to miss anything!
Thanks for your continued support, we truly appreciate it and love you all. We’ll see you again, somewhere near, somewhen soon.
Helloooo all you wacky wonderful Wyntry wazoo-kickers! (and if ‘wazoo-kickers’ wasn’t an alternate expression of ‘ass-kickers’ before, it is now. We needed a ‘w’ word.)
We hope you’re having a safe and happy holiday. We know it sure isn’t easy under the circumstances but we hope you can make the best of it. We’re taking a little holiday time off ourselves, we figure it’s better to play it safe and not risk ruining anyone’s family gatherings. There will be plenty to do when the new year rolls around. And yes, we’re optimistic that it will be a GREAT year!
Looking back on 2021 (pandemic aside, of course) turns up some pretty cool milestones! Despite Covid restrictions and lockdowns, and a near total ban on live music for a good chunk of the year, we still managed to find creative ways to keep busy and productive. We hit the ground running in January with the release of our single Fool on all the platforms, and followed that up in February with Beautiful Disaster before dragging the gear to Hillside Audio to record three new tracks in March for the next batch of releases. (Incidentally, Beautiful Disaster was featured on Live 88.5’s Big Money Shot Spotlight and we got our very first airplay on local radio!)
Come April we had the new songs ready to go and we did something a little unusual by releasing the video for Door before releasing the actual single itself in early May. The month of May also saw another video release – the infamous Suicidal Squirrel video! That one even got an on-air mention at Rebel 101.7! It is rather funny, you really should go watch it you haven’t seen it yet. Or even if you have hehehe…
Jumping ahead to July, we released our cover of the Tragically Hip classic Blow at High Dough on Canada Day. Gord Downie was a passionate advocate for indigenous rights, and given the horrific discoveries of children buried in mass graves at several former residential schools we wanted to call attention to the Every Child Matters movement that was gathering momentum at the time. We have the song available on our Bandcamp and will donate every penny it makes to the Downie & Wenjack Foundation for Indigenous Reconciliation. Find out more about the foundation at downiewenjack.ca
By this time all the songs and videos we were able to release had been released, and live venue restrictions began to ease a little so it was time to go out and play all this material for people! Our first show back from the 2021 edition of the lockdowns was on August 13th at the Brass Monkey with Innerpiece and Black Water Brigade. On October 23rd we headed down to Kingston where we joined God Thorn and Vinyl Hero at Overtime Sports Bar, and we were thrilled to see a few familiar faces that had made the trip to Kingston to see us play. You know who you are and we can’t thank you enough. What a memorable show that was!
All in all it was actually a pretty good year! We got to play a few shows with some amazing bands and released a few songs we’re really happy with. Looking ahead to 2022, we’re going back to the studio in February. We’ll be working with our main dude Cameron Dunn at Hillside Audio again to record some new material and hopefully package it all up in our first full-length album sometime in the summer. Fingers crossed.
We want to thank all of you for your support and encouragement as we navigated the pandemic minefield. Thank you for coming to the shows, thank you for watching the videos, and for adding us to your playlists, thank you for buying the merch. It means the world to us and motivates us to continue bringing you the most kickass – umm, we mean kickwazoo music we know how to make. We wish each of you and your loved ones the best for the holidays and we look forward to seeing your screaming faces from up on a stage sometime in the new year!
Geez it’s been so long since we did one of these we almost forgot the password to the WordPress account! Last time we spoke we were just about to release our cover of The Tragically Hip’s Blow At High Dough, which dropped on Spotify, AppleMusic and all the other platforms including our Bandcamp on the first of July. We’re thrilled with how it came out and we think it was pretty well-received but you can go have a listen for yourself if you haven’t already and let us know!
We want to thank everyone who came out to see us at the Brass Monkey on August 13th when we played with Black Water Brigade and Innerpiece, that was a hella good time! It was awesome to see so many faces we hadn’t seen in so long! We’ll be playing with Innerpiece again along with Enforcer and Inire at Mavericks on November 12th. Come on out and make some noise with us!
Let’s see, what else? More recently we headed down the 401 to the Overtime Sports Bar in Kingston on October 23rd where we joined Montreal’s Vinyl Hero to help celebrate Kingston doom metal band God Thorn’s CD release. It was our first time playing there and we had an absolute blast. What a cool venue, they literally have a UFC octagon flipped over on its side as a drum cage! We hope we can get back there soon. (We have some videos we’ll be posting here so check the Videos page often for updates!)
We also payed a new song in Kingston for the first time called Chaotique. We’re planning to book some time at Hillside Audio soon to record that and a couple of other tracks so be on the lookout for some new Wyntr in the not too distant future.
And that pretty much catches us up! Hope to see you all at Mavericks on November 12th and who knows where else after that – you all know how unpredictable Wyntr can be 😉
Why a cover? Why Blow At High Dough? Fair questions!
As everyone reading this already knows, on October 17th, 2017, we lost Gord Downie. To say that the man was a Canadian icon would be an understatement. Over 11 million of us – nearly a third of the entire population – watched the farewell show at Kingston’s K-Rock Center on August 20, 2016. It was a powerful moment.
So what’s the Wyntr connection? Well, we often bang out little bits of songs we like at our jams, either as warm up or just to goof around. It’s hard to pin down exactly when we started doing this but over time this evolved into us deciding to try doing an actual cover. Just for kicks, we figured it could be fun to do at shows. We established a rule that whatever cover(s) we did would have to be from Canadian bands. Just because.
We had experimented with a Bryan Adams song that turned out pretty cool in the jam room but the hair on the backs of our necks wasn’t exactly standing on end yet. We wanted to try a few more. One day, barely after we’d finished setting up, Lorne just randomly starts tapping on the high-hat and the groove just happened to be right for the bass intro to Blow At High Dough. So I just started playing while Ryan tuned his guitar and by some random fluke of the universe he kicks the tuner off and hits an A chord (to check his tuning) at exactly the point in the intro where the song literally does that…
So we kept going. And going. Ryan making up some of the words he didn’t quite remember, Lorne and I remembering changes literally the measure before they happened. We played the whole song from start to finish without ever having rehearsed it before, just from memory. It was a sign.
We introduced the song into our set to very positive reaction before Covid shut everything down, so we kept the song on the regular set list. There was something about how we played it that we just really, really liked.Some months later we’re at Hillside Audio and we knew we had to record it. It was a (mostly) live take, with Ryan’s insane twist on the guitar solo overdubbed afterwards.We think it came out great. We made it a point to respect the original while still putting a little splash of Wyntr on it. In fact we’d rather call this a tribute to The Tragically Hip than a cover.
Our optimism in March may have been a little misplaced – as you all obviously know we were locked down again, this time tighter than before. But that’s not going to keep us from being busy busy busy! The songs we recorded with Cameron Dunn at Hillside Audio were all mixed and mastered during the past month and guess what…THEY’RE READY!
We’re going to let “DOOR” out the door first because we made a really cool video for it. The single is set for a May 7th release on the major streaming platforms, and normally the video would be released on the same day, but were doing something a little different this time…
See, we get that all this waiting and waiting really sucks.Waiting for an end to lockdown, waiting for a vaccine, waiting for an appointment to get the vaccine. It gets old fast. We feel that, and that’s why we’re going to release the video for “DOOR” right away.
How the heck is everyone? Who’s looking forward to putting the parkas and boots away? Can we get a HELL YEAH!
Looks like we’re in the homestretch with the cold weather and warmer days are finally just around the proverbial corner. But even though spring is in the air, that doesn’t mean Wyntr’s going away anytime soon. With two Covid-safe shows – fingers crossed! – and some time in the studio coming up you might even say it’s a blizzard of activity! (See what we did there? ‘blizzard’ of activity? hehehe…)
So, to kick things off we’ll be recording some new songs – and one surprise – at Hillside Audio this week. It feels like forever since we last recorded and it’s going to be so much fun working with Cam Dunn again in his brand new digs. Did you know he even lets us bring our lamps? Not everyone gets to bring their own lamps, but he makes an exception for us because he just ‘gets’ us like that. If it all goes the way we think it will we should have some new music to show you before summertime hits.
We want to underline that these are Covid-safe shows. Covid safety protocols will be in place, with limited attendance, social distancing, and sanitization norms recommended by Ottawa Public Health in effect. There’s a light at the end of the tunnel but we recognize that we’re not quite there yet and we want everyone to feel safe, healthy and happy. If you can’t make it out, check out the events pages for these shows on our Facebook for live-streaming details.
We really can’t wait to get loud with you all again, and we will. Stay the course. Keep doing the things. Stay safe. Brighter days are coming, and in all the ways that matter.
We had just written this one the last time we were at Hillside Audio. We had plans to release it in conjunction with a gig at some point. When the pandemic made that impossible we just put it aside for what we thought would be a short time until we could get back to playing live gigs. Now that that’s on the horizon, we decided we would just release the song now rather than tie it to a show that may or may not get cancelled due to events out of everyone’s control.
It was inevitable that the events of the past year would play heavily on the themes of the music we were writing, as it was, we think, for most artists. This music is definitely a product of its time. Get it at your favorite platform right now!
It felt great to be back on stage on Saturday, December 5th at The BrassMonkey in Ottawa. We were joined by our buds in Hard Labour and a new band to the scene – jazz-rock fusion band Finely Tuned Elephant who did not disappoint!These kids are GOOD! Covid-19 restrictions were in effect to keep everyone safe and there was a live stream available for those who didn’t feel comfortable going out or who couldn’t get a ticket once we got the maximum capacity for the club. We want to thank Skotti at the Monkey and Brad at Pandamonium Promotions for all their hard work in making this happen.
We can’t describe what it means for us to be able to do this again. It’s great to have music in the Capital again after having lost a few venues to the lockdowns already, and the Brass Monkey is in real trouble so we were ready to do whatever we could to help out. And we’ll do it again. It’s one thing to claim we’re not essential, and to state that we don’t need bars and music venues – as was heard often and loudly during the lockdown – but we saw the faces, these people were thrilled to be doing something other than Netflix for a change. And the staff at the Monkey was happy to earn a little money right before Christmas.
Music and the arts are essential to our mental well-being and to the health and vibrancy of our communities. It doesn’t take a genius to figure that out. We simply need to imagine what the pandemic lockdown would be like without movies and videos and music…it’s scary just thinking about it. The restaurants, gyms, art galleries and music venues we’re trying to help employ real human beings who have as much right to earn a living as anyone else. No one is un-essential.
It’s important to point out that our support for these fine people and places does not in any way put us at odds with the prevailing guidelines issued by Ottawa Public Health. We believe strongly in the protective measures suggested by those who really do know best, just as we have faith in the amazing music fans in the community to understand and respect them. We all know that if we want shows like these to keep happening we each have to do our part.
We’ll be back at the Brass Monkey on January 9th with Waste Deep and Sunday Riot Club and we hope some of you can make it out, and if you can’t make it out or have COVID concerns, this one will also be live-streamed. We’ve also been working on some new music and we plan to have another single released right around the show date so be on the lookout for that on our Facebook and Instagram!
Better days are coming friends, better days are coming.
What a month. Live venues, along with gyms and restaurants, were put through another challenging lockdown and for a few of them it was a challenge they couldn’t meet. We lost the iconic Babylon Nightclub, as well as other long-established businesses. The local music scene could be forgiven for having low hopes for the future of live music in the capital.
But as they say when the going gets tough the tough get going and we want to send out a massive THANK YOU to Scott Ruffo, Michael Wood and their entire team at OpenSafe Ottawa. Not because they took on the mantle of leading the movement to save small business in Ottawa (which they did), not because they actually succeeded in opening a dialog with public health officials to discuss a plan to get business open again, safely and responsibly (which they did). We want to thank them for reminding us that there is always hope when we come together for a common and just cause. That was outstanding and inspiring gentlemen. Thank you.
In other news…new music alert!! Our next single ‘Steeples’ will be available on Spotify and Apple Music/iTunes on November 21st. We think you’re gonna love it! We also have a few more surprises in store so make sure you follow us on the socials and subscribe to our YouTube!
We will be back on stage – at Scotti’s Brass Monkey no less! – on December 5th with our buds in Finely Tuned Elephant and Hard Labour! Details will trickle out on Facebook shortly along with an official event page. We can’t tell you how much we’re looking forward to this one. Hope to see a bunch of you there!
Finally, we couldn’t leave without mentioning that Bleed was #1 this week on the Sweet Sunday Sounds chart on Valley FM 89.5 in Canberra, Australia! Yup, you read that right! We’re freaking international! Goes without saying that we’re giddy like little kids at Christmas!
Until next time, stay safe, be kind, and peace out 🙂