Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Review -- SYLVIE -- Trees and Shade Are Our Only Fences

Smallman Records
Sylvie is yet another one of the surprising number of truly solid rock bands emerging from Saskatchewan. Sylvie is a five-piece outfit with all but drummer Jeff Romanyk adding vocals on the CD. The rest of the band are; Riva Farrell Racette on bass, Chris Notenboom and Joel Passmore on guitars, while Erin Passmore plays keyboards.Erin is the latest addition to the band line-up and having a female vocal presence certainly adds something to Sylvie's sound.Formed in Regina in 1999, Sylvie debuted with their first full-length album I Wish I Was Driving in 2003, garnering the band a nomination for outstanding independent album of the year at the Western Canadian Music Association awards. An Electric Trace was released in 2005 through Smallman Records. In 2006, Sylvie won the CBC Galaxie Rising Star Award.So this is a band that is on the rise. It's easy enough to see why.'Fences' is an album which shows some definite maturity for Sylvie. There is a fair amount of depth and structure to arrangements which they themselves suggest "have a more finely tuned sense of precision." Musically there is a sort of punk underpinning at work here, with the lyrics being drawn more from the pop genre, which creates a fairly interesting completed sound, one that has some sweet beats, and just a little taste of underlying rawness that adds to the sound.In the end Sylvie has a sound that comes across as very current, sort of a perfect fit for the year 2008, and beyond.Certainly this CD should keep Sylvie moving forward in terms of recognition for their efforts. One to check out if you like modern rock.Find them on the Internet at

-- Review first appeared in Yorkton This Week newspaper Oct. 22, 2008 - Yorkton, SK. Canada

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