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We’ve been following Toronto’s Soft Wounds since their first demo EP release, and were lined up in anticipation of the first proper long-player. It’s no cookie-cutter shoegaze or dream pop release, as it features some solid songwriting, using genre identifiers only to draw curious listeners into their sonic world. The reverb is warm and generous, the feels are real.

“Baby Blue”, the teaser single released last week, gives a pretty good idea where this project is headed, with a respectful nod to forbears like Ride, and the soft/loud dynamics of Teenage Fanclub. It’s an anthem for the cool kids, who wouldn’t be caught dead listening to generic indie dreck at frat parties.

The real highlight of Soft Wounds is the churning storm of “You Can’t Stay Here”. The hook is undeniable. It feels both familiar and classic, but without being a rehash/recycle, and jangles to a full stop after a rollicking ride. Probably a lock for regular airplay rotation in no time.

It’s not a perfectly-formed album, by any means. Not all the choices make immediate sense, but the songs grow on you. There are ebbs and flows to Soft Wounds, as hard-charging tunes give way to slow-burn torch songs, but the imprint here is strong, the identity fixed. Soft Wounds does what they do, and are fully comfortable expressing themselves within the parameters they’ve set. They’re not looking to reinvent the sound, but they will draw you in to their version of it.

So has Toronto become Canada’s shoegaze capital? Hard to argue, with a list of luminaries like Indoor Voices, Beliefs, Iris (R.I.P.), Rituals, Elsa, RLMDL and Lust. Whatever’s got into the water in Toronto, we’ll have some of that.

Available now. Buy Soft Wounds debut S/T LP on Bandcamp, and follow their exploits on Facebook.

Not a lot you can learn from the Facebook page of Lust, save that they’re “A band from Toronto”, and their preferred genre is “Fuzz”. Peel back a layer or two, and you’ll find that one of the prime movers behind Lust is Scott Downes, one of the primary members of Iris, who blew the doors off last year with “Fix Me” and “Ragdoll”. But this isn’t that. What is this, then? Equal parts Nothing and Pity Sex, this is slightly sludgy, ragged but not sloppy, and wholly epic. We bugged Scott to spill the beans on the new band, and the new self-titled LP due today. Press play, and read why we’re pretty excited about this release.

So, is this a breakaway project to explore your sonic boundaries? Or are you done with Iris? Long question short, what motivated you to start up Lust?

I started this band with Trevor a few months back, because I really wanted to sing in a band. Coincidentally, Brad quit Iris and now I sing in both bands. I’ll never be done with Iris though. I love both bands the same.

This seems a different musical approach than Iris. What kinds of sounds and themes are you exploring here? 

We’re exploring sonic walls of perversion. Low and slow, baby. Low and slow. The lyrical themes have a lot to do with getting a meaningless nut in, and thinking of your ex girlfriend, or boyfriend, whichever you prefer.

Greater soft/loud dynamics here. Any bands or inspirations that helped shape the sonic landscape you built?

We all listen to the same kind of music, and all have our different tastes. So, it’s kind of like we’re playing what we love and bringing in all the other shit we love. Is that basic? buy non prescription flagyl Probably. I think we emulate it well, though. Trevor wishes we were a black metal band.

How did you find your bandmates for this project? And what did they bring to the table, in the songwriting or recording process?

Trevor is one of my best friends, so I asked if he wanted to start this band with me. Trevor and Bostin play Magic together, and Trevor mentioned that Bostin wanted to be in a band like Lust, so I hit him up. Then, Leigh came over with my friend Jacob one day. I didn’t really know him at the time, but Trevor asked if he played any instruments. You get the picture. I had a lot of the songs written before we even started! Bostin and wrote Alone and Day Dream together, Trevor helped structure one of the songs, and Leigh, well he plays drums so he does whatever the hell he wants.

Not to state the perfectly obvious, but this album rocks. Hard. Any plans to take this show on the road now the LP’s out?

We’re hitting up Montreal and Ottawa in a couple weeks. As for the states, i really don’t know. Leigh starts school in september. I think Bostin does too, I reall have no clue. Maybe we’ll do a little something in the winter for the states.

What comes next for Lust? 

The LP, shirts, maybe another EP later this year. We have a couple new songs we’re working on. Shouts out to Matty from Wheeler, KettleMain, Mr. Soft Treats, Na$ty Norm, and Acid?Priest in general. Total Love is sick too, check them out. Fuck the rest.

Grab a copy of Lust’s self-titled debut at Bandcamp, and follow them on Facebook. They’re busting out all over. Photo used with the kind permission of and © Justin Friske.

We first played Toronto’s Iris late last year with the instrumental grinder “Antoinette”. We caught up with them when the single “Ragdoll” premiered via Sounds Better With Reverb, and it was a breath of fresh air. We then heard the single “Fix Me” and fell over. Like the debut from Whirl (now Whirr) and Pity Sex before them, it was less of a band, or a sound, and more of a sheer force of nature. They practically dare you to get in, or get run over. Since then, Iris has generated a huge amount of buzz on our airwaves, recently opened for Whirr, done an impressive cover of The Killers’ “When You Were Young”, and they await their debut 10″ vinyl release on Middleman Records soon. We bugged for an interview before they got too big and too cool to talk to us.

Iris is:
Danielle – Vocals / Bass
Scott – Guitar
Matt – Drums
Brad – Guitar / Vocals
Also, they’re a force of nature. But we said that already.

DKFM: How did Iris get started? It seems like it started as two musicians and a session drummer, but now is a fully-formed band, kicking ass and taking names. How did it start, and how did we get here?

Scott: It started with Danielle and I! Danielle had the idea of starting a band while her and I were doing acoustic songs and I was skeptical at first, but did it anyway. We wrote Blossom, our first EP in the span of a month and recorded it with our friend Matt, who is now our drummer. A month after the release, Brad hit me up on Facebook and told me he wanted to jam with us. Before our first show in October, Matt and Brad were just suppose to fill in for us, but when we jammed it just felt so right to have them join.

Matt: I originally asked Danielle if she wanted to record her acoustic stuff in my studio and they had been working on the EP and decided to give me a shot. It was my first real project and helped me start up my studio as well as helped us get the band together, so it was a win-win situation.

DKFM: Inspirations? What bands do you look up to, and have helped form your own unique sound?

Scott: I look up to My Bloody Valentine a lot when it comes to shoegaze, Recently I’ve been fucking with Pygmalion by Slowdive as well. Something about that record messes with my emotions a lot. I love it. I really metronidazole buy online like Whirr a lot too; their music influenced me a lot. I really, really, really, love hair metal though, nothing gets me going more than Ratt or Van Halen.

DKFM: The rest of the EP is coming? Two tracks so far via Bandcamp, but more is promised. How is that taking shape, and how soon do we get our hands on it?

Scott: It’s coming. There are 5 tracks on the EP. Fix Me, Ragdoll, Numb, a re-recorded version of Downfall, and a full band version of This Isn’t Goodbye, from our acoustic EP. As soon as record pre-orders go up we’ll drop the rest of the EP, it was suppose to come out in November, but pressing plants are always backed up, so we’ll probably have it early 2015. We have the EP coming out on cassette for our online store in November though.

DKFM: The indie press and fans are FINALLY starting to catch up to your sound. What’s that been like for you?

Danielle: I didn’t really expect for people to notice us so it’s pretty shocking, to be honest! It’s really nice though, people are really supportive of us and we appreciate it a lot. It’s always cool to see people write about us on tumblr, and blogs scattered around the internet.

DKFM: How about touring? With the vinyl release of “Haunt Me” expected soon, and with new tracks imminent, any plans to take a victory lap?

Scott: We’re planning a tour for April, unfortunately I don’t think we’ll be able to reach California, but we’ll be there eventually for sure. We’re planning on going down the mid-west, through Texas, down to Tampa, and back up the East Coast. So if you have hook ups send them my way: scottdownes_07@hotmail.com

DKFM: What comes next for Iris?

Scott: Hopefully a full length in September 2015. We’ll see though. I don’t really want to rush anything. I’d rather work really hard on one record than half-ass a ton of bad ones. We’re planning on doing another 2 track EP before the full length though.

DKFM: Finally, what would you like all your new friends and fans to know about you?

Scott: Thanks for giving us a shot. I hope you all enjoy the new EP when it’s out, and hopefully we’ll have more stuff for you soon!


Follow the exploits of Iris on Facebook, Bandcamp, but not on Twitter. @iris_toronto will get you speed reading classes.
Photos courtesy of and copyright Cordell Shanahan, 2014, and used by permission.

Three new Decades tracks in rotation, this is surely one of our favorites. We expect it to get all sorts of crossover love, as it has that kind of appeal. Catchy hooks laid over droning guitar, topped with breathy vox. Catch them on DKFM, with full LP release on April 30th from White Girl Records.

Catch up with Toronto’s Decades on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/decadesWGR

Twitter: https://twitter.com/decadesdecades

At their website: http://decadesdecades.com

And visit their Soundcloud for free downloads! http://soundcloud.com/decadesband