Halifax noise pop power trio Kestrels return with their new self-titled LP. Their third in total and second for Sonic Unyon, the record sees the band combining a frenzied union of striking melody and sonic bliss.
Two years in the making, the full length was teased with 2014’s The Moon is Shining Our Way EP, a collection of four songs from the album sessions. Having toured the EP internationally and shared stages with the likes of Speedy Ortiz, Ringo Deathstarr, Beliefs, Greys, and Ash, the EP's title track was mainstay on college radio and CBC Radio 3, laying the groundwork for their defining third record.
Recording the rhythm tracks in downtown Toronto’s Dream House Studio by Alex Bonenfant (METZ, Crystal Castles), with vocal sessions and guitar tracking taking place in vocalist/guitarist Chad Peck’s gear sanctuary/home studio in rural Nova Scotia, the band tapped lauded producer Brad Wood (Smashing Pumpkins, Sunny Day Real Estate) to mix the record in his LA based Seagrass Studio in the spring of 2015. Ringo Deathstarr's Elliott Frazier and Alex Gehring also make cameo guitar and vocal appearances, solidifying a friendship that began with a Canadian tour in 2012.
The end result is by far their most accomplished recording to date. Drummer Paul Brown provides rhythm dynamics that can turn from tightly wound to borderline unhinged on a dime, Devin Peck covers unprecedented sonic ground with his bass, and Peck provides soft focus vocals backed by alternately tuned Fender Jazzmasters pushed through all manner of obscure Japanese fuzz pedals and coveted 80s rackmount processors.
The sum total is a nod to the past, a response to the present, and a warm invitation into tomorrow.
Praise for Kestrels:
"Whereas many nu-gazers sound like they want to pretend that it's still 1991, Kestrels don't try to rewrite history. Their songs sound like shoegaze should in 2016: huge, anthemic choruses and sticky pop melodies surfing tidal waves of pedal-driven noise and crashing rhythms." – Noisey
“Now a mainstay in Halifax, Kestrels have developed quite a following with their instantly recognizable brand of intelligently crafted, hazily psychedelic melodies and sweeping drones.” – Beatrroute
“Generous brush stroke chords of glorious, melodic dissonance. Kestrels take on the code of the solar spheres, invoking the valor and wonder of space's orbiting environments that exist and spin according to each's path and planetary position.” – Impose
1. No Alternative
2. Descent of Their Last End
3. Are You Alone?
4. Lying Down
6. Wide Eyes