FIRED UP – Edmonton-based band Rend perform at Red Deer College’s Far Side Lounge on Oct. 18.

Edmonton rockers to play the Far Side

Rend brings fired-up performance to City stage

Described as an electrifying musical powerhouse, Edmonton-based Rend plays the Far Side Lounge at Red Deer College on Oct. 18.

Founded in 2010 by lead singer/songwriter Carol-Lynne Quinn, these past two years have been a whirlwind journey and have allowed Rend to see tremendous success in the Canadian music scene. Rounding out the group are Jeff Quinn (bass), Steve Roe (electric guitar), Nick Lovejoy (drums) and Nate Glubish on piano/synth.

Members joined forces during their studies at Edmonton’s Grant MacEwan University. “Music was our homework,” explains Quinn during an interview from Toronto, where the band was attending Indie Week Canada last week. “But we also wanted to do something on the side that wasn’t judged and wasn’t considered homework.”

After they graduated, they found they had tapped into something unique. Gigs were requested around town and it was clear that Rend was carving out a niche for themselves.

“A couple more members joined us, and just within the last year and a half things really started to blow up.” They recorded their first disc No Lines only a few months after their first gig and immediately started receiving radio play.

They had recorded a project earlier, which Quinn said really opened their eyes to what they could do and the range of sonic possibilities that were there for the exploring.

Meanwhile, No Lines was about six months in the making and builds further on that edgy pop/rock foundation. “The recording experience was an eye-opening experience, and now we’re really excited to record our next album because we are more grounded in our sound.”

Supported by Rawlco Radio through the 10K20 project, the band released No Lines early this year. Their latest single, the soaring Battlecry, was recently released to radio across Canada as well.

The band has been described as having a ‘dash of Metric, a scoop of Coldplay and a layer of Paramore’ all topped off with The Cranberries. ‘Listeners are treated to driving rhythms, Zeppelin-worthy guitar solos, synth-pop hook lines and dynamic, soulful vocals.’

“Something we’ve learned is that it’s important to play your new songs live in concert as much as possible, and gauge the crowd’s reaction before you know which ones you’re actually going to record on an album.”

That said, they already have about half of the next CD’s tunes selected. Quinn said this coming winter will provide some time to really dive in and get the project crafted. She hopes to start recording next spring and perhaps release it later in the year. A few singles will also likely hit the airwaves in the interim to keep fans satisfied while simultaneously building on the band’s momentum and growing popularity.

Quinn’s own passion for music surfaced early on. She didn’t take music lessons during her growing up years, but she had a desire to write her own songs while experimenting with various melodies on the piano. It was also during time at church and taking part in school musicals that she found her voice.

“I always wrote and sang my own songs, but the big change was when I went to Grant MacEwan and studied in the vocal program.” She absorbed everything she could about the science of singing, and clearly, the dedication and commitment of all the band’s members has paid off.

“Tonight is our third show in a row, plus we have some radio programs in the morning,” she said of the Indie event in Toronto, where bands from across the country get to play at a number of the city’s iconic venues.

“It’s a creative experience – we’ve never played in Toronto before. The music scene is very cool.”

Quinn adds that when the band does tunes by other artists, she doesn’t feel especially jittery. But when they do their own material, a bit of nerves can surface. It all works to fuel a powerful show. “When I go up and I’m representing Rend, I’m definitely connect to it because it’s really close to my heart.”

These days, members of the band juggle their time between performing and working part-time jobs, and the dream is to be able, of course, to pursue their passion full-time and be able to make a living doing just that.

“We’re making a plan – step by step – to get there. And we understand it’s going to take months and years of hard work. But it’s funny, because we look back every six months and see how far we’ve come just from putting the effort into it.

“It’s not our desire to get famous – it’s our desire to do this as our career and make really good music. I was always totally passionate about music, and I think that everyone in the band was brought up being passionate about playing it, and understanding that it’s about putting a lot of time and effort into it.”

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