The Harder They Fall – Doghouse Rose (Interview + New Debut Album)
Toronto punk rock band Doghouse Rose has just released their debut full length album “The Harder They Fall” and if you’re looking to add some excitement to your weekend, I definitely recommend giving it a spin! The music is rooted in melodic punk with a hint of new wave and good old fashioned rock n roll, and the lyrics tell stories of chasing dreams, hard luck times and not taking life too seriously. The music is right in your face from the albums first song “Run 666” and keeps a great energy flowing for 10 more songs, it’s worth a listen all the way through. Listening to this album really makes me miss live music, as I can only imagine how much fun these songs would be to see in a concert setting! With how great of a listen The Harder They Fall is sitting down in my office, I’ll certainly be seeing Doghouse Rose live as soon as that’s safe to do again. The album is filled with fast guitars, a thunderously driving rythm section, candy sweet vocals and vibrant melodies, it’s really punk but in the funnest of ways. The kind of punk that makes want to rebel and throw your fist in the air, but dance your ass off and have a blast at the same time. If that sounds like something you’re into, click below to listen to The Harder They Fall, and keep scrolling for an interview with Doghouse Rose! If you’re a fan of the album, you can also attend the virtual Album Release party to watch some of these songs performed live as part of Stomp Records 25th anniversary concert series! Tickets can be found here https://thepointofsale.com/tickets/stp201205001
The Harder They Fall, your first album with Stomp Records just dropped today, what can you tell us about the album?
Sarah : Leading up to writing this album we’d been touring like crazy and having a bit of a rough go at it. We came to a point where we realized we had to just do it because we love what we do and anything that happened on top of that was an added bonus. A lot of the songs were written about experiences we’ve had as a band. Sort of a note-to-self and an open letter to anyone going through something similar to keep at it, and not take life too seriously.
Jefferson : This record is the culmination of the lesson we’ve learned of what to do and what not to do when it comes to being a DIY band. The messages are from very personal experiences and though the life of a touring musician is down and dirty it’s good fun too.
You just released a new music video for The Last Time, filled with beautiful pastels, strong emotions and a drive in. What was the thought behind the storyline for the video, and are there any behind the scenes stories you can share?
Sarah : We wanted to capture the feeling of a loss you can’t seem to get past. The storyline was inspired by the way nostalgic memory can be distorted and certain moments get replayed in your mind over and over. We thought “there’s nothing more nostalgic than a drive in”. We’re all creative weirdos so we do a lot of the stuff ourselves. The bedroom set was almost an exact recreation of the sketch I did when we were thinking up the concept. Its really cool to see things from your imagination actually come to life. It was an awesome team effort. Jefferson & Jordan did the lighting, we all put the sets together, I even sewed that outfit from the bedroom scene. Even though its a sad song, we had a blast putting it all together.
Jordan – Although the beach scenes turned out beautiful, there were several tires and a dead raccoon we had to make sure were not in frame.
On Saturday Nov 21st, you’ll be hosting an online album release show as part of Stomp Records 25th anniversary concert series, what can fans expect from the online release show?
Jefferson : Fans can expect a balls to the wall, ovs to the stove thrash fest. Most of the new album will be smashing through your living room screens and we feel that folks at home will be compelled to circle pit.
Sarah : At our shows, you’re guaranteed a ton of energy from the band, a lot of head banging and a few dad jokes
Stomp Records is celebrating “Killing It” for the last 25 years, which they certainly have been! You signed with them in September, how does it feel being a new addition to the Stomp Records family?
Jordan – It is an absolute thrill to be part of the Stomp family! The label has such a rich history in the Canadian punk scene and the roster, both past and present, is incredible. It includes some of my favourite bands so I feel very honoured to now be a part of said roster.
You’ve performed everywhere from maximum capacity festivals to maximum security prisons, can you tell us the story behind, and contrast between playing your biggest festival and a prison?
Jefferson : The two are practically the same. People are totally excited to get out and participate. There is obscene yelling and screaming and a complete disregard for safety. The only difference is the intoxicants in the prison are contraband.
Jordan – The big festivals are surreal everytime as there is what looks like a sea of people out there and you often get a really cool view of the city while on stage. It’s also just as fun playing in strange places,
such as a prison, though. It’s that variety that I love so much in the shows we play. Keeps things interesting! We had an old booking agent in Belgium who was friends with the wardens at a couple of maximum
security prisons, so he would book us there to play an acoustic set for the “good behaviour” inmates on some tours. The shows were in small rooms and quite up close and personal. These inmates are serving some pretty hardtime, so we saw many familiar faces. We have many weird/hilarious stories from those shows! I guess the biggest difference between the prisons and big festivals is acoustic vs. electric and the amount of dangerous criminals really.
Pre-covid Doghouse Rose toured internationally, playing up to 200 shows a year, can you tell us about how you feel the Canadian music scene compares to some of the scenes abroad?
Jefferson : Canadian fans are definitely hard core warriors and hold their own when it comes to supporting the bands they love but in Europe every night of the week is Saturday with no regard for what you have to get up and do tomorrow. Also there’s a 5-8 hour drive between cities in Canada. If you go that long in Europe you might have driven through a few countries. It’s much easier to cover a lot of ground and realistically the beer is way better.
Sarah : A lot of the Euro shows start earlier. It seems like its just part of their everyday life. Like go to work, have dinner, go see a show, drink a lot of beer, then bike home. Its pretty rad. The common ground between the scenes is that people who love live music and support it always will and we really appreciate that. There’s nothing we love more than a big loud sweaty punk rock show no matter where it is.
Last year you toured Europe, what would you say is one of your favourite memories from the tour?
Sarah : The first show we played when we landed was at this place called the Melkbus. We hadn’t slept in two days because we we’d been traveling and had to pickup the gear in a different city. We were so exhausted but the welcome we got at Melkbus gave us a blast of energy and it was an amazing night!
Jordan – It was our first time back to Europe in a couple of years so it was very exciting stepping foot on European soil again. It was also one of the most fun shows we’ve ever played overseas! It’s a really cool venue with a really cool owner (his name is Mark and we love him!) The crowd was nuts and we had the sweatiest, drunkest time.
The four of you come from all different walks of life and musical backgrounds. How did you come together to form Doghouse Rose, and how has the band evolved since then?
Jordan : – Almost 7 years ago I looked at Kijiji on a whim at “drummer wanted” ads and now, here we are! The sound has changed a lot over the years but I think it was a natural progression. Since day one we have been
trying to really find “our” sound so we’ve always been very collaborative and open to trying new things. I think with this record, we definitely bring to light just what that sound is.
You’ve built your reputation and fanbase through genuine connection and a DIY spirit. How important are those two factors for bands in 2020?
Jordan – – I think both could not be more important right now! There’s no need for any barriers between us and fans. We are thankful for everyone who takes the time to come to a show and/or check out our music, so we try
to be as open, honest and approachable as possible. A bit of craftiness to navigate this ever-changing music-world and world-world goes a long way too.
You’re based in Toronto, which has lost a lot of great venues already due to Covid. What do you think the future of Toronto’s music scene will look like when this pandemic is all said and done?
Jefferson : Toronto has always had a strong survival instinct. The music scene rises and falls in waves. There has always been challenges to overcome such as when smoking was banned from bars or the great garbage strike of 2009. People are drawn to see live entertainment and one way or another they will seek it out.
Jordan – I think everyone is hungrier than ever to get out there and support live music in any way possible. I sure am! The time away definitely made it quite apparent just how much people truly love live music,
both performers and spectators alike. I really think the whole music scene is going to come back stronger than ever.
Do you have any last words for our readers during these crazy times?
Jefferson : Make sure you change your oil every 5000 km
To learn more about Doghouse Rose visit http://www.doghouserose.com/
And for tickets to Stomp Records 25th Year Anniversary Concert Series visit thepointofsale.com/tickets/d7p201121002